Saturday, June 11, 2011

Edison & Ford Estates Part II

Good Morning Friends,

I am going to continue the tour of the Edison & Ford Estates because it was too beautiful to keep to myself! When Thomas Edison and his wife Mina first came down to Fort Myers, it was on their Honeymoon. The Edisons wanted to plant royal palm trees along the street now called McGregor Blvd. The Edison's told the City of Fort Myers they would pay for the trees to be planted and would care for them for a certain amount of years if the city would take over and maintain them after. The city agreed and there are still palms lining the street today. Most of the original palms have had to be replaced because palm trees do not live for hundreds of years like some other trees, and some hurricanes have come through since they were originally planted by the Edisons.

The entrance to the Edison home grounds from McGregor Blvd
 There is one palm tree near the main entrance that is believed to be one of the original palm trees. The tree is much taller than the others indicating a longer life.
This is one of the palm trees that may still be an original. Meaning it was one of the ones planted by the Edisons

 Edison invented many different things but his favorite invention of his was the phonograph. Many of his inventions were in the museum on the grounds, but some were inside the house because the family used them while they visited Fort Myers. It was hard to get a good shot of it due to the lack of light in the area of the house (in the photo above).
Indianhead Ginger Plant
And... the plants were just so neat!
Queen's Crape Myrtle

Henry Ford's House
 Henry Ford's house was a completely different floor plan than Edison's and unfortunately Henry Ford did not sell/donate his house to the city of Fort Myers so the no original belongings are in the house. This is one of the best parts of viewing Thomas and Mina Edison's house, everything inside was theirs and used by them when they visited Fort Myers.

Henry Ford sold the house for the same amount he purchased it. All of the pieces found inside of the house are from the time period in which Henry Ford visited the house to help show visitors how it may have looked. The Fords did not go to their winter home very much except to visit the Edisons.

This room was titled the secretary's office

Living Room of Ford's home

Austrailian Pine

Bamboo. Yes, bamboo grows naturally along the Calosahatchee River in Fort Myers. Apparently bamboo can grow up to 12 inches in 1 day!

Edible fruit on this tree. I forgot what they are called.

As Thomas Edison aged, his wife didn't want him to have to walk across the street (McGregor) to the main laboratory. She had this smaller laboratory built for him so he could go to his lab and work each day.
Edison's Little Lab located steps away from his house, for his latest years

We did the Historic Tour when we visited the grounds, but there are a few other types of tours available. I think I may go back and do the Botanical Tour because there were just too many flowers, plants, and trees to see during one day. I hope you enjoyed the rest of the tour. This is a place I could visit again and again.

Have a fabulous Saturday,
xoxo Susan


  1. Susan, thanks so much for the tour it was really interesting. I grew up in Dearborn, Mi home of Henry Ford and the amazing Greenfield Village which is a huge museum that has many of Henry Ford's cars and other items. Many of Thomas Edison's inventions are there too. Henry Ford's home in Dearborn is a huge mansion made of stone, it is really beautiful.
    Thanks for sharing,

  2. What a nice tour! If you come to Miami, visit the Kampong, a historic home and garden of David Fairchild, a plant explorer of the same time period. His lab is there, plus the garden is a grove of fruit and flowering trees. Those red fruit look like lychees... yummmm!

  3. Thank you Susan for sharing photos of your wonderful tour :-) They are all beautiful.