Thomas Edison, fully Thomas Alva Edison

Edison, fully Thomas Alva Edison

American Scientist, Inventor and Businessman

Author Quotes

When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this - you haven't.

X-rays ... I am afraid of them. I stopped experimenting with them two years ago, when I came near to losing my eyesight and Dally, my assistant practically lost the use of both of his arms.

Your worth consists in what you are and not in what you have.

What we call man is a mechanism made up of ? uncrystallized matter ? all the colloid matter of his mechanism is concentrated in a countless number of small cells. ? These cells [are] dwelling places, communes, a walled town within which are many citizens. ... These are the units of life and when they pass out into space man as we think we know him is dead, a mere machine from which the crew have left, so to speak. ... These units are endowed with great intelligence. They have memories, they must be divided into countless thousands of groups, most are workers, there are directing groups. Some are chemists, they manufacture the most complicated chemicals that are secreted by the glands.

What you are will show in what you do.

Whatever the mind of man creates, should be controlled by man's character.

When I have finally decided that a result is worth getting, I go ahead on it and make trial after trial until it comes.

When Theodore Roosevelt termed Tom Paine a "dirty little atheist" he surely spoke from lack of understanding. It was a stricture, an inaccurate charge of the sort that has dimmed the greatness of this eminent American. But the true measure of his stature will yet be appreciated. The torch which he handed on will not be extinguished.

When you exhaust all possibilities, remember this: you haven't.

We tried some experiments in mind reading which were not very successful. Think mind reading contrary to common sense, wise provision of the Bon Dieu that we cannot read each others? minds, would stop civilization and everybody would take to the woods. In fifty or hundred thousand centuries when mankind have become perfect by evolution then perhaps this sense could be developed with safety to the state.

What a wonderfully small idea mankind has of the Almighty. My impression is that he has made unchangeable laws to govern this and billions of other worlds and that he has forgotten even the existence of this little mote of ours ages ago.

What I have denied and what my reason compels me to deny, is the existence of a Being throned above us as a god, directing our mundane affairs in detail, regarding us as individuals, punishing us, rewarding us as human judges might. When the churches learn to take this rational view of things, when they become true schools of ethics and stop teaching fables, they will be more effective than they are to-day... If they would turn all that ability to teaching this one thing ? the fact that honesty is best, that selfishness and lies of any sort must surely fail to produce happiness ? they would accomplish actual things. Religious faiths and creeds have greatly hampered our development. They have absorbed and wasted some fine intellects. That creeds are getting to be less and less important to the average mind with every passing year is a good sign, I think, although I do not wish to talk about what is commonly called theology.

What man's mind can create, man's character can control.

We shall have no better conditions in the future if we are satisfied with all those which we have at present.

We are striking it big in the electric light, better than my vivid imagination first conceived. Where this thing is going to stop Lord only knows.

We don`t know a millionth of one percent about anything.

We have laid good foundations for industrial prosperity, now we want to assure the happiness and growth of the workers through vocational education, vocational guidance, and wisely managed employment departments. A great field for industrial experimentation and statesmanship is opening up.

We have merely scratched the surface of the store of knowledge which will come to us. I believe that we are now, a-tremble on the verge of vast discoveries - discoveries so wondrously important they will upset the present trend of human thought and start it along completely new lines.

We never had a sounder intelligence in this Republic. He was the equal of Washington in making American liberty possible. Where Washington performed Paine devised and wrote. The deeds of one in the Weld were matched by the deeds of the other with his pen. Washington himself appreciated Paine at his true worth. Franklin knew him for a great patriot and clear thinker. He was a friend and confidant of Jefferson and the two must often have debated the academic and practical phases of liberty.

We often miss opportunity because it's dressed in overalls and looks like work

We really haven't got any great amount of data on the subject, and without data how can we reach any definite conclusions? All we have ? everything ? favors the idea of what religionists call the "Hereafter." Science, if it ever learns the facts, probably will find another more definitely descriptive term.

Waste is worse than loss. The time is coming when every person who lays claim to ability will keep the question of waste before him constantly. The scope of thrift is limitless.

We are going out with the ladies in yacht to sail, perchance to fish. The lines will be baited at both ends.

We are like tenant farmers chopping down the fence around our house for fuel when we should be using Natures inexhaustible sources of energy - sun, wind and tide. ... I'd put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don't have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.

Tom Paine has almost no influence on present-day thinking in the United States because he is unknown to the average citizen. Perhaps I might say right here that this is a national loss and a deplorable lack of understanding concerning the man who first proposed and first wrote those impressive words, 'the United States of America.' But it is hardly strange. Paine's teachings have been debarred from schools everywhere and his views of life misrepresented until his memory is hidden in shadows, or he is looked upon as of unsound mind. We never had a sounder intelligence in this Republic. He was the equal of Washington in making American liberty possible. Where Washington performed Paine devised and wrote. The deeds of one in the Weld were matched by the deeds of the other with his pen.

Author Picture
First Name
Last Name
Edison, fully Thomas Alva Edison
Birth Date
Death Date

American Scientist, Inventor and Businessman