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Rice, Edwin Wilbur, Jr. (06 May 1862–25 November 1935), electrical engineer and industrialist, was born in La Crosse, Wisconsin, the son of Edwin Wilbur Rice, a Congregational minister and an editor, and Margaret Eliza Williams. His family moved to Philadelphia, where he attended the Boys’ Central High School. The school, which then gave its four-year graduates the bachelor’s degree and the master’s degree for a fifth year of study, conferred A.B. and M.A. degrees on him. This was the extent of his formal education. In school he came under the tutelage of ...

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Weston, Edward (09 May 1850–20 August 1936), electrical engineer, inventor, and industrialist, was born at Brynn Castle, near Oswestry, County Shropshire, England, the son of Edward Weston, a carpenter and mechanic, and Margaret Jones. When Weston was seven years old, his family moved to Wolverhampton, part of England’s highly industrialized “Black Country.” After his education in the town’s grade schools, he attended St. Peter’s Collegiate Institute. He studied chemistry and physics privately there with a fellow of the London Chemical Society, Henry A. Horton. Contrary to Weston’s wishes, his parents insisted that he pursue a medical career. A three-year-long apprenticeship convinced Weston that medicine was not his field. In spite of his parents’ bitter opposition, Weston abandoned that field of study in 1870 and went to London, intending to find work in a scientific field. When this hope proved futile, Weston disappointed his parents still more by leaving to seek opportunities in the United States....