Thomas A. Edison's Patent Application For an incandescent light bulb, 1879

"Genius is hard work, stick-to-it-iveness, and common sense."

Thomas A. Edison

Thomas Edison propelled the United States out of the gaslight era and into the electric age. Out of his New Jersey laboratories came 1,093 patented inventions and innovations that made Edison one of the most prolific inventors of all time.

In 1878, the creation of a practical long-burning electric light had eluded scientists for decades. With dreams of lighting up entire cities, Edison lined up financial backing, assembled a group of brilliant scientists and technicians, and applied his genius to the challenge of creating an effective and affordable electric lamp. With unflagging determination, Edison and his team tried out thousands of theories, convinced that every failure brought them one step closer to success. On January 27, 1880, Edison received the historic patent embodying the principles of his incandescent lamp that paved the way for the universal domestic use of electric light.

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