Edison Memorial Tower.

World's Largest Light Bulb

Field review by the editors.

Edison, New Jersey

The Thomas Edison Memorial Tower and Menlo Park Museum were built in 1938, in the Menlo Park section of what is now the town of Edison. They mark the site of Edison's greatest triumphs, particularly the invention of recorded sound and the light bulb, which he unveiled to the public on December 31, 1879. The spot is marked by a 118-foot-tall tower topped with the World's Largest Light Bulb, which is 14 feet tall, weighs eight tons, and is illuminated at night (Henry Ford stole the actual workshop and bottled Edison's Last Breath). The museum curator, Jack Stanley, entertained us with amazing tales of Edison and his competitors, but said the Last Breath thing was a bunch of hooey.

The museum was closed in 2010, given a makeover, then reopened in June 2012. At that time the light bulb was switched off and the tower surrounded by scaffolding for a complete renovation.

Update: The museum announced in January 2014 that the tower will reopen later in the year, at which point the big bulb will be switched back on -- lit by LEDs, not Edison's incandescent light bulbs.

Also see: Light Bulb Methuselahs

World's Largest Light Bulb

Edison Museum and Memorial Tower

Address:
37 Christie St., Edison, NJ
Directions:
Edison Museum and Memorial Tower. Garden State Pkwy Exit 130 toward Edison-Metuchin. Drive west on Hwy 27, watch for right at big rock onto Christie St. Up a few blocks on the left.
Phone:
732-549-3299
Admission:
Free, donation.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
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September 17, 2014

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