[Z003-F] Records of the Supreme Court of Judicature and Related Courts (J 17/319)
This testimony was given by Thomas A. Edison in May 1895, in the patent infringement case of Edison-Bell Phonograph Corp. v. James E. Hough, heard in the British High Court of Justice, Chancery Division. Hough was an official in the London Phonograph Co. Edison was one of several Americans called as defense witnesses whose depositions were taken in New York by special examiner Herbert H. Wilson, the British vice-consul. Richard N. Dyer, Edison's patent attorney and a phonograph specialist, was also present. Subjects covered in Edison's statement include the relationship between various British and U.S. phonograph patents; the relative merits of Edison's phonograph and the competing graphophone; and business transactions involving the Edison Phonograph Works, the North American Phonograph Co., and the Edison United Phonograph Co. Edison also mentions the importance of having a very hard surface on phonograph cylinders in order to ensure that sounds are recorded and reproduced accurately.
Unselected testimony for the defense includes that of several other witnesses connected with the phonograph business in the United States: Victor H. Emerson, George E. Tewksbury, and Cleveland Walcutt. Also unselected is testimony for the plaintiff by prominent figures in the graphophone industry, including Edward D. Easton, Andrew Devine, and Charles S. Tainter. Several items related to this case also appear in D-95-23 (Phonograph -- Edison United Phonograph Co.) in the Document File Series.