1929 2¢ Edison’s First Lamp
Flat Plate Printing
Issue Date: June 5, 1929
First City: Menlo Park, NJ
Quantity Issued: 31,679,200
This stamp was issued to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first incandescent electric light, invented by Thomas Edison. Because of the Post Office policy never to portray a living person on a United States stamp, Edison's picture could not be shown on the stamp that honored him.
The Wizard of Menlo Park – Thomas Alva Edison
Inventor Thomas A. Edison’s first patents were for improvements in telegraph technology. After selling these patents for a substantial amount of money, a 23-year-old Edison bought his first workshop in Newark, New Jersey. He made improvements to the design of the typewriter there in 1874. Before Edison’s improvements, people had been able to write faster by hand than by typing.
From 1876 to 1887, Edison worked in a workshop in Menlo Park, New Jersey. It was there on October 19, 1879, that Edison created the first practical electric light. People all over the world quickly learned of this astounding accomplishment and the “Wizard of Menlo Park.”
Edison also invented the phonograph, which he considered his favorite invention, at Menlo Park. In 1887, Edison moved to a more modern laboratory in West Orange, New Jersey. There he perfected many of his inventions from the 1870s and organized companies to sell his inventions. He also made improvements to the motion picture camera and created “talking pictures” by linking the phonograph and the motion picture camera.
Edison’s later inventions include the storage battery, a cement mixer, the dictaphone, and a duplicating machine.