Nikola Tesla

Tesla in Colorado Springs, 1901

A Brief History

The photo above depicts Nikola Tesla sitting amid millions of volts, in his Colorado Springs Laboratory. Circa 1900.

The world of Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) is not as easily found in our history unlike that of Edison or Einstein. Tesla was probably the greatest scientist and visionary of the past Victorian and modern industrial age. Our world today which is run by electricity, illuminated with discharge lamps and connected through the air with radio "waves", includes and is derived from many of his inventions. Yet still only a trace of Tesla's life and works reside in our popular books.

Always at odds with Edison, a young Tesla became the creative drive behind the Westinghouse Company at the turn of the century. The 1893 "Columbian Exposition" with the Westinghouse and Tesla exhibits, was a marvel for all to view. Edison's DC standards proved no match for the power plants at Niagara Falls and the globe was soon electrified by Tesla's AC Polyphase System. Nikola Tesla was granted more than 700 United States patents during his career and it was not uncommon for many of his discoveries to lead to developments of which other scientists were honored, like the photoflash, x-ray or radio. Tesla discovered many of the principles for radio, of which Marconi was renowned for years later.

Many believed Tesla continued to work on his energy beam weapon and massive ELF (Extremely Low Frequency) experiments up until his death. These experiments have been described so vividly in the press and may continue to this day. Nikola Tesla died alone on January 7th, 1943 in his room at the Hotel New Yorker, although far from destitute. All of his remaining notes and apparatus, filling many truckloads, were confiscated by the U.S. Government and put in storage. The Tesla museum in Belgrade houses the the most complete and permanent collection of his life's studies. A vivid book, "Man Out of Time" by Margaret Cheney should be your first venture to discover Tesla.

Author: John A. Popadiuk

Nikola Tesla's Wardenclyffe Tower

~ Nikola Tesla on Voltaire ~

"I had a veritable mania for finishing whatever I began, which often got me into difficulties.

On one occasion I started to read the works of Voltaire when I learned, to my dismay, that there were close on one hundred large volumes in small print which that monster had written while drinking seventy-two cups of black coffee per diem.

It had to be done, but when I laid aside the last book I was very glad, and said, Never more!"

The Wardenclyffe Tower

Nikola Tesla, "My Inventions: The Autobiography of Nikola Tesla", Hart Bros., 1982. Originally appeared in the Electrical experimenter magazine in 1919.

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