Thomas was born February 11, 1847 in Milan Ohio. He was the seventh and
last child of Nancy and Samuel Edison. As a child he was very quiet, thoughtful
and inquisitive. Because he was not a hardy child he did not attend school until he
was 7. His teacher thought he was incapable of learning, so his mother who was a
teacher took him out of school and started teaching him herself. Thomas Edison had
Thomas' mother taught him how to think problems out in his mind for
himself and he also became an avid reader. hefirst read about chemistry and
experiments from an encyclopedia. His great passion for conducting experiments
taught him much scientific knowledge. Because of his knowledge other kids teased
and started fights with him. Thomas Edison set up hisfirst laboratory in his
basement of his home in Port Huron, Michigan
At age twelve Thomas became a newsboy on a train that ran from Port Huron
to Detroit. He was givena place in the corner of a baggage cart where he could sell
his newspapers, magazines and candy. The railroad company also allowed him to
have a small laboratory set up in one of the box cars. in all his spare time he would
work in his laboratory or study chemistry and physics at the Detroit library. He also
printed newspaper in the box car laboratory. He was a good newsboy and had a
good business until one day when a bottle of phosphorus fell off one of the shelves
breaking as it hit the floor starting a fire. The conductor was so angry at Thomas he
boxed his ears and put him off the train. As a result of the boxing Thomas gradually
lost his hearing and was almost totally deaf in later years.
While working as a newsboy in a railroad station in Mt. Clemens, Michigan,
Thomas saved the stationmaster's son by getting him out of the way of a moving
train. The farther was so grateful that he taught Thomas telegraphy. Thomas worked