Thomas A. Edison Home
Fort Myers, Florida
Tucked away in this resort area are nineteen acres on the Calooshatchee
River where Thomas Edison and Henry Ford were neighbors and friends.
Back in 1885 Edison and a business partner visited Fort Myers and within
24 hours purchased the riverfront property and began construction of two
identical homes. Two years after a visit to Fort Myers, Henry Ford purchased
an adjacent estate in 1916.
We all know many of Edisonís inventions, but I was amazed to learn
he held over 1,000 patents, and is the only person to date who filed
a patent for sixty-five consecutive years. He was still inventing
when he died in his mid-80's in 1931. Henry Ford worked on his automobiles
at his estate until they went in to mass production in Dearborn.
Edisonís laboratory was moved to Michigan in 1925, but in 1927 another
laboratory for rubber experiments is begun.
In addition to all this information and history, there is a huge
botanical garden of rare and sometimes weird plants. Edison used
many of them in experiments, but mostly he was just interested in the variety.
The second largest Banyon tree in the world is on Edisonís estateĖthe first
largest is in India and the third largest we saw several years ago on Maui.
It was an interesting and informative day in April 2000.