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Hugh F. Hicks

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Biography

Born: April 26, 1923
Died: May 7, 2002

Hugh Francis Hicks was a Baltimore periodontist who, according to a specialist from the Smithsonian Institution, amassed the largest and one of the three most important collections of light bulbs in the United States. His lifelong obsession with electricity led him to gather over 60,000 bulbs and open a museum below his dental practice to display them for visitors. Some of these bulbs had tremendous historical significance, like a dashboard light from the Enola Gay, the bomber which dropped an atomic weapon on Hiroshima. Others represented the scope of American cultural history, like a representative collection of Christmas lights or bulbs shaped like Betty Boop and characters from Walt Disney cartoons.

Further Reading

Douglas Martin, Hugh Hicks, 79, Prodigious Collector of Light Bulbs, Dies, New York Times, May 15, 2002
Jacques Kelly and Frederick N. Rasmussen, Hugh Hicks, dentist who owned light bulb museum, dies at 79, Baltimore Sun, May 08, 2002