This week’s Houdini and Doyle episode included murder, a haunted house, and Mr. Thomas Edison. I thought with the appearance of Edison that I would take a bit of time to talk about the inventor and some of his inventions.
Edison was born in my home state Ohio, in the town of Milan. I’ve personally never been there, but there is a museum devoted to his birthplace that I’m thinking I should visit. I know the necrophone won’t be there, but I’m a sucker for a museum. He moved to Michigan later in his life and wound up going down a path of self education after an event at his one room school house. Edison became involved with the telegraph and moved to Massachusetts, where he became exposed to further scientific knowledge. He began working as a repairman within telegraph and other offices, then began spending his free time working on his own inventions. When he moved to Menlo Park Edison invented a device, which is most connected to this episode, the phonograph.
Yes, Edison invented a number of other devices, many of which were tremendously important. He created a power station and was able to light portions of New Jersey with his incandescent bulbs. His inventive skills really are impressive, though I am fond of Mr. Tesla myself. I mean he went a bit crazy and invented a death ray, but that’s pretty impressive. Anyway, this is about Edison, I’ll restrain myself from falling into a Tesla discussion. I’m sure Houdini would be proud though.
The necrophone in this episode was similar in design to Edison’s phonograph. Using wax cylinders Edison was able to record what people said and play them back later. Between 1888 and 1890 Edison began working on talking dolls, which utilized his phonograph technology for private use. The dolls were sold for a very brief period of time and actually cost a lot of money for the investors. While the dolls are collector’s items, they are actually kind of spooky. They give me the willies just listening to them. You can actually check them out right here. Seriously, they are very creepy. If I owned one of them I would have thought it was haunted.
Share your Houdini and Doyle thoughts with us in the comments or on Twitter, @thenerdygirlexp. You can find me on Twitter, @kleffnotes, on my blog, kleffnotes.wordpress.com, on my kleffnotes YouTube channel, I run The Nerdy Girl Express Snapchat, thenerdygirlexp, and I post recipes on the iZombie Support Group site.