New Rubber Discovery Exhibit Opens at Edison & Ford Winter Estates



Chris Pendleton, President & CEO
Lisa Wilson, Marketing & PR Director

New Rubber Discovery Exhibit Opens at Edison & Ford Winter Estates

FORT MYERS, Fla. (January 25, 2016) -- On January 31, the new exhibit "Edison & Rubber: A Scientific Quest," will open at Edison & Ford Winter Estates. The opening ceremony will run from 2:00 p.m to 4:00 p.m. and feature interactive activities for kids of all ages along with Edison Ford living history characters of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Edison and Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford.

Immediately following the opening ceremony, Dr. Richard Wallace, professor of Organic Chemistry at Armstrong Atlantic University and consultant for the project, will speak about the chemistry behind the rubber research that took place in the laboratory. His lecture also will include what makes the lab and the project to find an American source of natural rubber so historically and scientifically unique and why it's in the news today with threats to rubber bearing plants. 

Thomas Edison’s final major research project was the search for a domestic source of natural rubber. "Edison & Rubber: A Scientific Quest" details the importance of natural rubber, the beginnings of Edison’s interest in this commodity, the formation of the Edison Botanic Research Corporation, the successful experiments with goldenrod and other plants, and the final chapter of the project after Edison’s death in 1931.

Edison’s final undertaking had truly international implications, and this exhibit will help visitors understand the importance of the laboratory and the research that took place here, as well as what went on behind the scenes.

Also included in the exhibit are the original lab results of how much rubber each tree and plant produced, samples of rubber in various stages of completion, and a video depicting a re-creation of Edison's rubber experiment.

The exhibit will be held in the newly remodeled museum hall that includes a rubber floor. Refreshments will be available. For more information, call 239-334-7419.


Edison & Ford Winter Estates 
Edison Ford is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Edison Ford was awarded the 2009 National Stewardship Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, an official project of “Save America’s Treasures," a Florida Historic Landmark and a National Register Historic Site. In 2014 the Edison Botanical Laboratory was designated as a National Historic Chemical Landmark. For additional information call 239-334-7419 or visit the website at