Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Thomas Edison and Henry Ford Winter Estates

Today we visited the winter estate homes of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford in Fort Myers, Florida. We started on the lab and museum side where this great banyan tree lives. It is from Calcutta India and is approximately 400 feet. The Banyan tree was a gift from Harvey Firestone in 1925.
Across the street is where the homes are and the gardens continue. This is the caretaker's house and garage:Edison's office with a gorgeous little garden in the back:Along with the buildings, there are 20 acres of tropical gardens with more than 500 unique plants so the grounds themselves make this a place worth visiting.The chemical laboratory is one of the most absorbing features of the Edison Estate. Here, workers helped Edison in his research on goldenrod as a source of natural rubber. Throughout the laboratory, where Edison conducted his last major experiments, all of his things are just as they were in his lifetime, including his "cat-nap" cot. Because of his deafness, Edison's sleep was undisturbed and relaxed him so much that 15 minute sleep to him was as good as is several hours to anyone else.
One of my favorite features of the houses is the porches that wrap around the entire house. I can envision their families spending hours on these lovely porches. Austin demonstrating his gyro sphere that he purchased here.Afterwards, we visited a Lion's park that was located close by. The kids had fun burning off energy and being kids.


unschoolermom said...

Looks like fun! Taliesin and Nathanael would love that slipper slide! :^)