Saturday, October 17, 2015

EDISON AND FORD WINTER ESTATE…A MUST VISIT

Friday, October 15 – We did something a little unusual today, we split up on our sightseeing. Marsha loves museums, and Paul is only lukewarm on most of them. Marsha wanted to see the Edison & Ford Winter Estate in Fort Meyers, Florida, today. Paul having recently toured the Ford Museum in Michigan felt it would be too similar and chose instead to run some errands while Marsha enjoyed herself. He dropped her off at the Museum and returned after his errands and read his Kindle until she was done.

Paul reading

The Edison & Ford Winter Estate includes many galleries interpreting the lives and inventions of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. The museum is self-guided and for an extra small fee you can obtain an audio guide that gives an audio description of what you are seeing. This place is nothing like the Ford Museum in Michigan.

Edison & Ford Winter Estate

Mr. Edison standing among the Banyan trees.Edison & Ford Winter Estate

On the tour, Marsha experienced exhibits on Edison inventions, Ford automobiles and viewed special exhibits reflecting history, science and the arts.

Can anyone guess who invented all of these?Edison bulbs

Henry Ford’s patent for the carburetor in 1898. This is his first of 161 U. S. patents that he received.

DSC04848

Edison & Ford Winter Estate

What an amazing invention to help Edison hear the music. Edison & Ford Winter Estate

Ever hear of the electric pen? Another Edison’s inventions. DSC04975

How about the water phonograph?
Edison & Ford Winter Estate

Marsha said there are so many awesome exhibits that everyone should be sure to visit this terrific museum!

The Banyan tree exhibits were of special interest. Edison, Ford and Firestone were working to find a natural source of rubber that could be grown in the United States. The Banyan tree was one of over 17,000 plant samples tested for Edison's rubber research. This tree, Ficus benghalenis, was successfully planted and can be found throughout the Edison and Ford estates.

These trees are amazing.
Edison & Ford Winter Estate

Mysore Fig or Brown Woolly Fig….related to the banyan. This
species has dramatic above ground roots. Awesome.

Brown Woolly fig

The grounds were amazing. Marsha really enjoyed the audio guide. The gardens contain more than 1,700 plants representing more than 400 species from six continents.

Angel Trumpet.
Angel Trumpet

Galangal Ginger used in Indonesian and Thai dishes.
Galangal Ginger

The first thing Edison did was build a pier so that contents for the homes and laboratory could be delivered. There use to be a small pergola at the end of the pier where Edison would fish, and his wife could be shaded from the sun. 

Edison pier

The original main house design included a kitchen and dining room in the north wing.  In 1906 the Edisons had this part of the house remodeled to serve as family bedroom suites.  Visitors used the dining room and kitchen in the newly renovated Guest House.  The Main House includes Library, Study and Edison's Den.

Edison's main home

The next photo is Edison’s library. The books in the library are Edison’s original books. Also, all the lights are original and all Edison’s design.

Edison's library

Edison's living room.
Edison's livingroom

Marsha really liked the way they used to hang pictures.
picture hangers

Henry Ford purchased his home in 1916, providing him the opportunity to vacation with Thomas Edison. The Ford porch, adjacent to the vintage garage, offers a spectacular riverfront view of the Caloosahatchee River. The Ford Catetaker's Cottage was used as a garage and caretaker's home for the Ford family.

Beautiful huge porches.
ford porch

Maid's room.
maid's room

Even the secretary had a bedroom.
secretrary bedroom

Beautiful dinning room.
DSC04930

Living room.
living room

Waterfront view.
water front view

Marsha said there is so much to see and experience. She highly recommends everyone to visit the Edison & Ford Winter Estate. Even Paul said he just might have enjoyed this tour.

After the tour, we headed a short distance across Fort Meyers to visit two close friends that recently moved here from Houston, Texas. Sandra and Leo were full-timers we spent many fun times with at the Houston Elks Lodge campground. They were the unofficial campground hosts at the Lodge and always made us feel at home. We miss this couple while staying at the Houston Elks. It just isn't the same without them there.

Sandra and Leo

We have moved on to Palm Harbor just outside St. Petersburg. We have one more post to do about our visit to the Fort Myers area before we share our St. Petersburg adventures.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y’all back real soon. Have a great day!

7 comments:

  1. Thanks for the introduction to the Edison Ford Winter Home. Always wanted to visit there. Looking forward to it even more now.

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  2. I meant to suggest you visit here! So glad you found it. I'm not a huge museum person myself but I love this type tour. What a fun day! Aren't all the trees amazing! You saw things flowering and we saw the fruit. I love the Angel Trumpet you saw. Were the huge Buckhorn Ferns hanging from the trees? They were my favorite. The star fruit were hanging ripe on many trees. I've never seen a Star fruit tree...very weird seeing these fruits hanging from the tree. The VC was selling them for a $1 a piece. They were so rioe and sweet. The grocery stores are always green and never ripen right.

    Did you see the photos of the Edison's and Ford's camping in the Everglades? I was itching just thinking of camping there without bug spray and all those clothes! Loved their camper!

    Thanks for taking me back to a wonderful adventure:)

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  3. That was an awesome tour of the winter home, would like to take it one day of we ever get back to Florida.

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  4. Don't know how I missed this post.
    Amazing how the imagination of one man took us out of the dark ages.
    That is only one Banyan tree that has continued to grow over the years and dropping all those supporting branch/roots.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

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  5. That would definitely be an interesting museum. If we end up around that area, we're going.

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  6. Thanks for the memories, we loved that place.

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