Group of Edison Portland Cement Co. Stubs - Stock CertificateInv# AG2213 Stock
Group of 5 Stock Stubs for the Edison Portland Cement Co. 2 of the 5 related to Thos. A. Edison.
Thomas A. Edison (1847-1931) Edison had a late start in his schooling due to childhood illness. His mind often wandered and his teacher Alexander Crawford was overheard calling him "addled". This ended Edison's three months of formal schooling. His mother had been a school teacher in Canada and happily took over the job of schooling her son. She encouraged and taught him to read and experiment. He recalled later, "My mother was the making of me. She was so true, so sure of me; and I felt I had something to live for, someone I must not disappoint."
Partially deaf since adolescence, he became a telegraph operator after he saved Jimmie Mackenzie from being struck by a runaway train. Jimmie's father, station agent J.U. Mackenzie of Mount Clemens, MI, was so grateful that he took Edison under his wing and trained him as a telegraph operator. Edison's deafness aided him as it blocked out noises and prevented Edison from hearing the telegrapher sitting next to him. One of his mentors during those early years was a fellow telegrapher and inventor named Franklin Leonard Pope, who allowed the then impoverished youth to live and work in the basement of his Elizabeth, NJ home.
Some of his earliest inventions related to electrical telegraphy, including a stock ticker. Edison applied for his first patent, the electric vote recorder, on October 28, 1868.
Thomas Edison began his career as an inventor in Newark, NJ with the automatic repeater and other improved telegraphic devices, but the invention which first gained Edison fame was the phonograph in 1877. While non-reproducible sound recording was first achieved by Leon Scott de Martinville (France, 1857), and scientists at the time (notably Charles Cros) were contemplating the notion that sound waves might be recorded and reproduced, Edison was the first to publicly demonstrate a device to do so. This accomplishment was so unexpected by the public at large as to appear almost magical. Edison became known as "The Wizard of Menlo Park" after the site of an unsuccessful real estate development in Raritan Township, New Jersey called Menlo Park where he resided. His first phonograph recorded onto tinfoil cylinders that had low sound quality and destroyed the track during replay so that one could listen only once. In the 1880s, a redesigned model using wax-coated cardboard cylinders was produced at the Bell Laboratory by Chichester Bell and Charles Tainter; this was one factor which prompted Edison to resume work on his own "Perfected Phonograph". Both were marketed by the North American Phonograph Co, mainly for office dictation. The "gramophone", playing gramophone records, was invented by Emile Berliner in 1887, but in the early years, the audio fidelity was worse than the phonograph cylinders marketed by Edison Records.
Edison's major innovation was the Menlo Park research lab, which was built in New Jersey. It was the first institution set up with the specific purpose of producing constant technological innovation and improvement. Edison invented most of the inventions produced there, though he primarily supervised the operation and work of his employees.
William Joseph Hammer was an assistant to Edison and a consulting electrical engineer. In December 1879 he began his duties as laboratory assistant to Thomas Edison at Menlo Park. He assisted in experiments on the telephone, phonograph, electric railway, ore separator, electric lighting, and other developing inventions. However, he worked primarily on the incandescent electric lamp and was put in charge of tests and records on that device. In 1880 he was appointed Chief Engineer of the Edison Lamp Works. In this first year, the plant under general manager Francis Upton, turned out 50,000 lamps. According to Edison, Hammer was "a pioneer of Incandescent Electric Lighting"!
The Edison Portland Cement Company was a venture by Thomas Edison that helped to improve the Portland cement industry. Edison was developing an iron ore milling process and discovered a market in the sale of waste sand to cement manufacturers. He decided to set up his own cement company, founding it in New Village, New Jersey in 1899, and went on to supply the concrete for the construction of Yankee Stadium in 1922.
In 1881 Edison formed the Edison Ore-Milling Company and tried for many years to make that business a success. The demand was not existent, though new technological innovations that Edison brought to the industry the company could not compete with operations in the Midwest. Despite continual investment, with Edison selling shares in General Electric, the company suffered huge losses. Eventually, the ore-crushing technology was sold to other mine owners.
The manufacturing process used by the Edison Ore-Milling Company produced a large quantity of waste sand which he would sell to cement manufacturers. The properties of the fine sand were particularly suitable for concrete, leading to a harder, more durable product. In 1899, Edison decided to join the cement business, reusing some of the technology he had developed for ore-milling.
Edison made significant improvements to the production process of cement. His mill in the valley of the Delaware River in New Jersey featured the first long, rotating kilns in the world. While the standard length was between 60 and 80 feet, Edison's kilns were up to 150 feet. To improve his financial stability he licensed the kilns to other manufacturers, but this helped his competitors to improve their production. Eventually, the industry became saturated and Edison's business was not particularly profitable.
Somewhat ahead of his time Edison believed that concrete would have a wide range of applications, but in the early 20th century its production was not sufficiently economical. He envisioned a future with concrete houses filled with concrete furniture, refrigerators, and pianos. While none of these items were made Edison did create concrete phonograph cabinets. Edison investigated the use of formwork molds that could repeatedly be used to create concrete houses, experimenting in 1910 by casting a garage and a gardener's cottage at his mansion in New Jersey. He decided to donate the patented information to qualified builders rather than charge for it, generating significant publicity in the process.
Philanthropist Henry Phipps Jr. saw the potential of these affordable houses and considered them to be the solution to New York's housing shortage. He had already invested $1 million into affordable housing projects by setting up Phipps Houses, an organization that continues to this day. Phipps declared his intention to build an entire city for working-class families using the concrete casting technique but Edison was never able to provide the plans.
One of the main difficulties facing the project was its complexity. Each house would be constructed using a mold that comprised 2,300 pieces, and the cost to a builder purchasing the molds was excessive. Nonetheless, some houses were built when investor Charles Ingersoll financed Frank Lambie's plans. Lambie constructed several concrete houses in Union, New Jersey, where they are currently still in use.
The Edison Portland Cement Company was barely surviving financially until a new contract was won in 1922. Production began on the original Yankee Stadium on May 5, 1922, and was completed in just 284 working days. Built in The Bronx, New York City, New York, the stadium was home to the New York Yankees until 2008. During the course of the construction 45,000 barrels of cement, 30,000 cubic yards of gravel, and 15,000 cubic yards of sand were mixed by 500 men who produced 35,000 cubic yards of concrete. When the building underwent renovations from 1973 the walls were left untouched because Edison's concrete mix was seen to be hard and durable enough to remain intact.
The stadium was closed for several years of renovations from 1973, reopening in 1976. From then it remained in use until 2008; the new Yankee Stadium opened the following April. The original was demolished in 2010.
The company only lasted a few years after the construction of the Yankee Stadium, falling victim to the Great Depression.
A stock certificate is issued by businesses, usually companies. A stock is part of the permanent finance of a business. Normally, they are never repaid, and the investor can recover his/her money only by selling to another investor. Most stocks, or also called shares, earn dividends, at the business's discretion, depending on how well it has traded. A stockholder or shareholder is a part-owner of the business that issued the stock certificates.