Getting away from the many achievements of Thomas Edison we now take a look at his own reminiscence, exploits, and experiences which is quite funny and sometimes dangerous. Contents are expressed in his own words.. Thomas Edison recalls being at Menlo Park one cold winter night when out of blue there came into the laboratory a strange man in a most contemptible condition. The stranger look quite frozen. When the stranger spoke, he asked if he might sit by the stove. Within a few moments of sitting by the stove, he asked to see the head man, and I was brought forward
The stranger's head was of an abnormal size, with highly intellectual features and a very small emaciated body. The stranger said he was suffering very much, while enquiring if I had any morphine. As I had about everything in chemistry that could be bought, I told him I had. He requested that I give him some, so I got the morphine sulphate and hand it to him. The stranger poured out enough to kill two men, I told him that we didn't keep a hotel for suicidal guests and he had better cut down the quantity.
Education and Intelligence!
This strange man then bared his legs and arms, and they were literally pitted all over with scars, due to the use of hypodermic syringes. He said he had been taking it for years, and a big dose of morphine required to have any effect. I let him go ahead. In a short while the stranger seemed like another man and began to tell stories. There were about fifty of us who sat around listening to this strange man until the early hours of the morning. He was a man of immense intelligence and education. The stranger told us that he was a Jew, but there was no distinctive attributes to verify this very assertion of his. He continued to stay around until he finished every combination of morphine there was with an acid that I had, probably ten ounces all told. Then he asked if he could have strychnine. I had an ounce of the sulphate. He took enough to kill a horse, and asserted it had as good an effect as morphine. When this was gone, the only thing I had left was a chunk of crude opium, perhaps two or three pounds!
Bottle of Bromine!
He chewed up the opium and then disappeared. I was greatly disappointed that he had gone, because I would have laid in another stock of morphine to keep him at the laboratory. Unfortunately about a week afterward the said man was found dead in a barn at Perth Amboy. One day while I was carrying
on my work at the Newark laboratory, a Wall Street Broker came from the city and said he was tired of the `Street,' and wanted to go into something real for a change. The broker said he had plenty of money and he wanted some kind of job to keep his mind off Wall Street so we gave him a job as a mucker in chemical testing. The second night he was there he could not stand the long hours and fell asleep on a sofa. One of the boys took a bottle of bromine and opened it under the sofa. It floated up and created a violent effect on the mucous membrane. The broker was taken with such a fit of coughing he broke a blood vessel, the man who let the bromine out, took flight and he has not been heard of, or seen since!