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Age of Great Inventions Video & Audio

Edison Films

The early films by the Edison Manufacturing Co. represent one of the great historical collections from the period. You can view lots of them, sorted chronologically, here:

Time & Motion Studies

The Prelinger ephemeral film archive, hosted at archive.org, has some of the early time and motion study films of Frank Gilbreth (a follower of Frederick Taylor) available for viewing and download. On an interesting side note, the Gilbreth family was the historical basis for the book and film, Cheaper by the Dozen.

Electrocuting the Elephant

The most bizarre episode in Thomas Edison's campaign against AC electrical power has made it to YouTube. In January of 1903, Edison agreed to electrocute (with alternating current, of course) a six-ton Indian elephant named Topsy that had killed three trainers—the last of which was reportedly drunk and fed the animal a lit cigarette—in as many years. In what the New York Times dubbed a "rather inglorious affair," the animal was shocked to death at Coney Island, the famed New York amusement park, before a crowd of 1,500 onlookers. For the morbidly curious with an age-verified log in.

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