The collection documents Emile Bachelet, inventor of electro-magnetic therapeutic devices for the treatment of rheumatism.
Scope and Contents:
The collection consists of approximately .66 cubic feet of biographical materials, correspondence, clippings, patents, photographs, newspaper clippings, and a scrapbook relating to Emile Bachelet's invention of a device for magnetically levitating trains and other devices.
Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1890-1956, consists of Bachelet's passports, citizenship papers, some genealogical notes, clippings, a certificate from the Masonic Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, and an undated interview with Albert Bachelet, Emile's son. Documentation on Albert Bachelet's work with the Lincoln stereoscopic pairs is also here.
Series 2: Correspondence, 1915-1959, includes letters from Emile Bachelet's former secretary, Suzanne Stokvis-Simpson, to Albert Bachelet from 1948 to 1959.
Series 3: Patents, 1903-1929, contains both United States and foreign issued patents for Bachelet's inventions. Also included in this series is information on Bachelet's Wave Generator Machine that was used to treat individuals suffering from rheumatism and other pains by "increasing the vital energies of the blood and creating a vibratory magnetic field in which is placed the patients or patients."
Series 4: Photographs, 1929-1945, include Bachelet's "Magnetically Levitated Railway" device, his "Free Energy Machine", models, equipment, and other devices being demonstrated and portraits of Emile Bachelet.
Series 5: Newspaper Clippings and Scrapbook, 1912-1973, document accounts of the public presentation of Bachelet's model of a magnetically levitated train in London in 1914 and other projects.
Series 6: Miscellaneous, 1915-1917, contains a visitor's book to Bachelet's laboratory, brochures on the Bachelet Wave Generator machine and drawings.
The collection is divided into six series.
Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1890-1956
Series 2: Correspondence, 1915-1959
Series 3: Patents, 1903-1929
Series 4: Photographs, circa 1880s-1945
Series 5: Newspaper Clippings and Scrapbook, 1912-1973
Series 6: Miscellaneous, 1915-1917
Biographical / Historical:
Emile Bachelet (1863-1946) was born in Nanterre, France, a village outside Paris and emigrated to the U.S. in the 1880s. He began his career in Boston as an electrician on the building staff of the Boston Institute (now known as Massachusetts Institute of Technology). He was naturalized a United States citizen in 1888, moved to California in 1889 and then to Tacoma, Washington where he worked as an electrician for the city government and later as an inventor of electro-magnetic therapeutic devices for the treatment of rheumatism. Bachelet discovered that arthritic pain disappeared when he was near huge generators and thus began his experimentation with electromagnets. In the 1890s he conceived the idea of magnetic levitation and worked for twenty years on its application to a train. A model was exhibited in London in 1914 and it received worldwide notice and some financial support. In the early 1900s, Bachelet moved to New York City and formed three companies, Bachelet General Magnet Co., Inc., Bachelet Magnetic Wave Company, and Bachelet Medical Apparatus Company to continue his invention work. However, his interest shifted often from one device to another and he later moved to Poughkeepsie, NY where he continued his invention efforts in a small workshop until his death in 1946.
The collection was donated by Albert E. Bachelet, son of the inventor.
Collection is open for research. Gloves must be worn when handling unprotected photographs and negatives.
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.