Edison’s Electric System
Many people think that Edison invented the first light bulb. However, this is not true. For many years before Edison, inventors had tried to use electricity as a source of light.
In 1879, Edison invented a long-lasting electric light bulb that could be used in homes. This light bulb was different because it could burn for several hours. Edison’s light bulb had a special thread called a filament. When heated, the thread would glow and give off light. However, not many people could use his new invention. Very few homes or businesses had electricity.
Edison invented the electric power system to bring electricity into homes and businesses. By the 1890s, hundreds of towns around the world had Edison power stations.
Courtesy of U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Edison National Historic Site