Tuesday, August 21, 2007
21 August 2007
The birth place of Thomas Edison is located in Milan, Ohio. Since the weather was moderating a bit today and there were no reports of flooded roads between the motorhome and Milan, we headed in that direction.
Milan turned out to be one of those small towns that had a maritime history. Much to my surprise, it was a major port in the mid 1800’s. This was more surprising since it was not located close to Lake Erie. They built a canal and soon had dozens of barges and small ships calling for crop cargoes.
They were doing so well with this water born transportation that when the railroad approached the town about running the rail line through Milan, they decided to stick with the port alone. This, of course, proved to be a major mistake and they soon lost the transportation business to the railroad in Norwalk, Ohio, who had welcomed the railroad with open arms. Today, Norwalk is about ten times the size of Milan. That may be good or bad depending on your point of view.
Today, Milan appears to be a very well kept mid-west town of around 1400 people. We enjoyed lunch at one of the main street eateries, and a stroll around the square. Then we proceeded to the Edison Museum.
The museum is located in the house that Edison was born in and spent his early years. The staff provided a very good description of his family history and how the museum was set up by one of his sisters who had remained in the area and purchased the building to preserve it as a part of Edison’s history. It contains a number of examples of his many inventions and some of the products that he manufactured. A visit here and to the Greenfield Village in Detroit, Michigan will give you a good understanding of the life and times of this truly remarkable man.
On our way back, we stopped in Monroeville to see how the Huron River was doing after all the rain. It was still in its banks, but certainly running fast.