Alva Edison is the world's greatest inventor. Doing most of
his work in his laboratories in Newark, Menlo Park, and West
Orange, he earned 1,093 patents, a world record.
was born in Milan, Ohio, in 1847 and moved with his family
to Port Huron, Michigan, when he was seven. Known as Al in
his younger days, Edison struggled with his schoolwork. He
left school after only three months, and his mother home-schooled
his poor grades, he had a great interest in learning. In his
free time, he enjoyed reading his father's extensive book
collection, working with mechanical items, and conducting
his own chemical experiments.
a teen, Edison honed his mechanical skills in various jobs
at railroad yards, newspapers, and telegraph offices. On his
breaks at his job selling newspapers on a train, he would
conduct science experiments in the baggage car.
his early twenties, he was creating inventions in his spare
time. In 1869, he received his first patent for an electric
vote recorder. Although politicians rejected the machine,
he learned a valuable lesson. Edison focused his efforts on
inventions that would be widely used by the public.
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