Antiques, History

New Edison Finds

I have some new items to add to my collection of Edison memorabilia. Last year I acquired an old, glass bottle that once held  battery oil made by Thomas A. Edison Industries. A friend and I went out on the public trail where I found the bottle to search again. He has a metal detector, so we made a day of it to see if we could find more treasure. We did find that casing of what used to be a battery also made by that company. It is in rough shape, but I brought the pieces back with me.

I have not been able to find any useful information pertaining to this battery. One source explains that railroads started using these batteries in signal boxes in 1953. I think I may have also located the patent with drawings of this same battery box. But that is about all I have been able to come up with. I think I will try to trim the front part of the battery out and mend the pieces together to put it in some sort of shadow box. I think it would make for great conversation piece on my wall.

The second piece I managed to add to my collection was found by a co-worker, who then gave it to me. It is a case for a wax cylinder used with the Ediphone (aka Dictaphone). The Ediphone’s were early recording machines. You slid a wax cylinder on the machine, turned it on, and began speaking into a horn. The voice vibrations made an etching needle move up and down and recorded the sound. Pretty amazing technology in its day! When cylinder was filled up, it could be slid back into the protected tube or played back. It’s just another neat piece of history to add to my collection. It will either go up on the shelf, or it might make a nice pencil cup.



9 thoughts on “New Edison Finds”

  1. batteries about that size were used for radios. I have one marked “Tiger” and “Radio Battery” that looks like it may be similar to yours. Also when you talk about the signal boxes. I have some that are rounded at the ends that I believe used the round dry cells.

    1. Thank you, Tom. We will have to head out on the trails again this summer! I can bring my metal detector so we can cover more ground. I will have to see if I can find a railroad map that shows detail of where signals and other structures were.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s