Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Thomas Edison's Personal Hat, with a Delightful Back Story. On January 11, 1929 Edison was in his East Orange, New Jersey laboratory along with longtime friend and business associate Edward Adams. Adams' daughter tells the story of the hat in a letter to Edison's daughter:

    "After a long serious conference my father joked about who had the biggest head and suggested that they exchange hats to which Mr. Edison agreed. They found to their delight that the hats fit each other perfectly, and my father said, 'Thank you, I am going to keep your hat,' and he walked out the door."

    In another letter to Edison's daughter:

    "Among the many household treasures that were moved into my home after Mr. Adams' death was a "KNOX" hat box with a gray felt hat in it and a card explaining that this hat belonged to Thomas Edison" (the card accompanies this lot).

    The lot is also accompanied by the original letters, and a photo of Edison wearing what is clearly this same hat. A wonderful artifact from one of America's great geniuses.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2016
    3rd Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 21
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,623

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $200,000 (minimum $19), plus 20% of any amount between $200,000 and $2,000,000, plus 12% of any amount over $2,000,000 per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 19 days left to consign to the 2020 June 7 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Signature Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    Heritage Auctions and Mr. Chad Reingold were...professional and courteous in all transactions and provided outstanding service in answering my many emails. I recommend them at the highest level.
    Killy M.,
    Melbourne Beach, FL
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search