Our discovery of electricity is not quite as complex and difficult to pinpoint as our discovery of fire, but it does date back earlier than many think with more than one credited source.
Early History of Electricity
The term volt comes from Alessandro Volta’s discovery that electricity could flow through chemicals in a battery and cause voltage. However, it may come as quite the shock to some to learn that the ancient Egyptians had batteries! Modern man is not as modern as we think. Who knows what new discoveries we may make about electricity just when we think we have learned it all?
Who discovered electricity?
Throughout history, many inquisitive scientists have peeled away layer after layer of knowledge about electricity to lead to our modern age of clean power. In more recent times, English scientist Thomas Browne actually used the word electricity to describe static electricity that another doctor wrote about. It was not until 1752 that Ben Franklin would do his famous experiment with a kite and a key. Michael Faraday created a practical power generator. Thomas Edison and Joseph Swan both invented the incandescent bulb. Nikola Tesla contributed to alternating current power-based technology. All these people at different times discovered different aspects of electricity, but none of them invented it. Today, researchers are still working to improve our collective knowledge and make mankind’s use of electricity greener and more efficient.
The Beginning of Modern Electricity
It can be argued that the modern era of electrical study began with a kite, a storm and a curious man and his son. Benjamin Franklin hypothesized and proved that lightening was an electrical phenomenon. He may have harnessed the modern era that afternoon.
Today, we are an energy-dependent nation, and that is not a bad thing. After all, we follow in the footsteps of great scientists who discovered electricity and have made modern living an era of comfort and convenience our ancestors likely never even imagined when they first tried to harness this powerful energy — and with much less waste than previous generations, as well.