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Nikola Tesla
(July 10, 1856 - January 7, 1943) Croatia - U.S.A.

Nikola Tesla



Born at Smiljan, Lika, Croatia, in 1884, into a family of Serbian origin, Tesla's father was an Orthodox priest. He trained to be an engineer, attending the Technical University at Graz, Austria and the University of Prague. Tesla began work as an electrical engineer with the Central Telegraph Office in Budapest, Hungary in 1881 and the following year, he went to work in Paris for the Continental Edison Company. In 1883 he constructed, after work hours, his first induction motor.

Nikola Tesla age 23Tesla was fluent in many languages. Along with Serbian, he spoke seven other languages: Czech, English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, and Latin. He sailed to America in 1884, arriving with four cents in his pocket. He found immediate employment with Thomas Edison. He settled in the U.S. and was naturalized. Tesla developped the alternating current (AC) electrical supply system, and also invented fluorescent lighting, among 700 other inventions.

Tesla designed the world's first hydroelectric plant in Niagara Falls, and demonstrated the principles behind radio nearly ten years before Marconi. The "tesla", (unit of magnetic flux density) was named after him.

In 1915 he was severely disappointed when a report that he and Edison were to share the Nobel Prize proved erroneous. Tesla was the recipient of the Edison Medal in 1917, the highest honor that the American Institute of Electrical Engineers could bestow. When others claimed credit for the revolutionary ideas that came from his extraordinary mind, he did not contest them.

By 1943, he had begun suffering heart trouble and fainting spells along with some mental confusion. On 1/01/1943 he complained of chest pains during an experiment and returned to the hotel in New York City room where he lived. The last person to see him alive was a hotel maid. His body was discovered on the following day. It seems that he was survived by thee sons.

"Tesla never married; no woman, with the exception of his mother and his sisters, ever shared the smallest fraction of his life... Only the highest type of woman could win his friendship; the remainder of the sex had no attraction for him whatever... Tesla tried to convince the world that he had succeeded in eliminating love and romance from his life, but he merely drew a veil over the secret chapter of his life which an intolerant world had no right to know."

Although rumors of Tesla's homosexuality abounded, no same-sex sexual relationship has been documented. This is not surprising considering the fact that such relations were illegal.


Quote source: Johansson, Warren, Nikola Tesla, in "Encyclopedia of Homosexuality". Garland, 1990. p. 1287-1288

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