The Light Bulb That’s Been Burning Since 1901



At 119 years old (as of June 2020), the Centennial Light is the world’s longest-lasting light bulb. Burning since June of 1901, it's currently located inside Fire Station #6 in Livermore, California, and is maintained by the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department. The bulb has been officially recognized by The Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s longest-burning light bulb. It was originally a 60-watt bulb but now is very dim, emitting about the same light as a 4-watt nightlight. The hand-blown, carbon-filament common light bulb was manufactured in Shelby, Ohio, by the Shelby Electric Company in the late 1890s and was invented by Adolphe A. Chaillet. It's only been off a handful of times. In 1903 it was moved to a new station, in 1937 it was off for about a week for renovation of the firehouse, in 1976 it was moved to its current location and was off for 22 minutes, and there was a 9½-hour interruption when there was a mysterious power source interruption. Today, The Centennial Light continues to burn and people continue to cite the light’s very existence as a clear example of planned obsolescence. The bulb even has its own dedicated webcam so that anyone in the world can confirm that it is indeed still shining its light upon the world.