Contributions to the Knowledge of Electricity - Recording

Date of Recording: 1908
Duration: 2:18
Call Number: VVL00915

In this speech, given in 1908 at an electrical exhibition, Edison reflects upon the rapid progress made in technological development in the late turn of the century. The Atlantic Cable, according to Edison, signals the beginninng of the "incredible rapidity of development of electrical arts," for it allowed us to "extend our control over the forces of nature," to keep the "old world moored alongside the new." The cables of copper and steel are thus "the family ties of the civilized world,"symbols of an enhanced and integrated society. At the close of this speech, Edison calls upon the younger generation of scientists and electrical innovators to follow in the footsteps of 19th century innovators and to rise up to the height of their responsibilities in this day of electricity.

Early Recording of Animal Sounds - Recording

Date of Recording: 1878
Duration: 1:16
Call Number: VVL00577

This is Edison's first recording, which is also considered to be one ofthe first recordings ever made. Recorded a full ten years beofre Edison's gramophone, this German language cylinder documents the sounds of lambs, cows, cuckoos and other fauna.


  • Introduction to Early Voices

  • America and Its Early Voices

  • Introduction to Early Recording
  • William Jennings Bryan
  • Eugene Debs
  • Thomas Edison
  • Samuel Gompers
  • William McKinley
  • William Taft
  • Booker T. Washington