A scientific journal that detailed the last experiment of Thomas Edison has sold with superb results in a September 20 auction in Philadelphia.
The experiment that Edison was undertaking before his death in 1931 was carried out as a request from Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone. The motor industry giants wanted the great inventor to find an alternative to rubber, as rubber trees did not grow naturally in the US and the import and manufacture costs for tyres were becoming too expensive.
Edison rose to the challenge, testing thousands of natural materials during the course of the project. He eventually discovered a type of Goldenrod weed that would produce enough rubber to be feasible, but died before the study was completed.
The journal at auction recorded his experiments between October 24, 1927 and January 9, 1928. As one of a just a few of Edison's journals available to private collectors - the being majority held by the Thomas Edison National Historic Park - it was an incredibly desirable item that is rarely seen at auction.
As predicted by Paul Fraser Collectibles, the journal soared past its $25,000 high estimate, achieving a 100% increase at $50,000. Included within its 117 pages were Edison's handwritten notes and some fantastic scientific drawings.
Paul Fraser Collectibles is currently offering two fantastic Thomas Edison items for collectors. We have an incredibly rare example of Edison's original stock ticker tape machine, which was one of his earliest experiments. We also have a signed copy of the Edison Spanish Colonial Light Company's annual report.