The system was built by Thomas Edison as part of an experiment to prove that an entire community could be lit by electricity from a shared, central generating station.
A steam-driven generator sent the juice through the wires strung overhead to a store, the town's railway depot, 40 or so houses and 150 streetlights. The First Presbyterian Church of Roselle made electrical and ecclesiastical history three months later when it installed a 30-bulb "electrolier" and became the world's first church to be lighted by electricity.
The electric chandelier still hangs in the church. In the centennial year of 1983, a bronze-and-granite marker was dedicated at the original site of Edison's generator at the corner of Locust Street and West First Avenue in Roselle.
Edison, one of the most prolific inventors of all time, was known as the "Wizard of Menlo Park." That predates, apparently, the age of visionaries, geniuses and gurus. Among Edison's 1,093 U.S. patents are the incandescent light bulb, the phonograph, the stock ticker and the kinetoscope, an early film projector.
According to wired.com