Edison and the Electric Chair: A Story of Light and Death

Edison and the Electric Chair: A Story of Light and Death


A Discover journal best technological know-how Book

Thomas Edison surprised the United States in 1879 via unveiling a world-changing invention--the mild bulb--and then launching the electrification of America's towns. A decade later, regardless of having been an avowed opponent of the dying penalty, Edison threw his laboratory assets and popularity in the back of the construction of a really diversified type of device--the electrical chair. Deftly exploring this startling bankruptcy in American background, Edison & the electrical Chair gives you either a brilliant portrait of a country at the cusp of modernity and a provocative new exam of Edison himself.

Edison championed the electrical chair for purposes that stay debatable to at the present time. used to be Edison certainly fascinated with the anguish of the condemned? used to be he waging a crusade to smear his rival George Westinghouse's alternating present and enhance his personal approach? Or was once he caution the general public of actual hazards posed through the high-voltage alternating wires that looped above 1000s of America's streets? Plumbing the interesting historical past of electrical energy, Mark Essig explores America's love of know-how and its fascination with violent loss of life, taking pictures an period whilst the general public used to be mesmerized and terrified via an invisible strength that produced blazing mild, powered streetcars, carried mobilephone conversations--and killed.

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