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The Edison

I'd like you to meet the Edison - that's what we call it.  I can't remember how old I was when we got the Edison from my father's cousin Jamie, but it has been in the family all along.  Its technical name is a cylinder phonograph.  It plays wax cylinder "records" specially made for it by Edison's Blue Amberol Record company.  

The Edison lives at my mother's condo now.  On our recent trip to Chicago, I showed my kids how it works.  Yes, it still works very well.  It is operated by a hand crank on the right side of the cabinet.  It uses no electricity.

My mother had the cabinet for the cylinders specially made.  My favorites are "Waiting on the Robert E. Lee" and "Harmony Bay".

Antiques are a great way to share family history, and ignite kids' interests in a subject.  Jor Man got very excited when I pointed out that Thomas Edison's company made it.  Campster wanted to know if Thomas Edison's germs were on it?  (LOL!)  Sher Bear just danced around to the music.

Being as old as I am (chuckle) I remember old 78 LPs.  Then 45s and 33 1/3s.  It must have been quite a leap to go from cylinders to disks.

When we were dating, Big Dad still had his 8-track player.  I used to record my favorite songs off of WLS radio onto cassette tapes.  And then CDs came along, and now mp3 players.  That's a lot of change in just my lifetime.  Imagine before Edison, people could only listen to music if it was live.

That's real history - how it affects people in their every day lives.  Share with your kids the changes that have happened in technology since you were young.  What was it like for your parents growing up?  Can your kids think of questions to ask their grandparents about how things have changed since they were young?

And what can your kids invent to change the future?

Wish you were here!

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