Electric Pen no. 5718 was sold at Christie's in Mechanical Music and Automata on 23 May 2002, lot 419.
The Edison Electric Pen, driven by a wet-cell battery, was designed to create manuscript stencils for manifold copies. It worked with a vibrating stylus, like a tattooist's needle, which impressed minute perforations in a special wax-coated paper. The pen went on sale in 1876 and is believed to have sold in large numbers, although surviving examples are rare. The development of the typewriter soon reduced the demand for the Electric Pen, and Edison's invention of a simple stylus with a perforating wheel rendered it obsolete for manuscript copy purposes.