Described as “a genuine poet of electricity,” Nikola Tesla paves the way for scientific and social breakthroughs with his discovery of an alternating current electrical system, creation of “artificial daylight,” and ambitious theories on interplanetary communication. Read more about it!
The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.
The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.
|1883||Tesla came to the United States and began working at Edison’s lab.|
|1886||He formed Tesla Electric Light & Manufacturing.|
|1888||Tesla invented the first usable Alternating Current motor.|
|1893||Demonstration of alternating current generators at the Chicago World’s Fair, lighting thousands of incandescent light bulbs.|
|1896||The first Niagara Falls hydroelectric plant opened, which Tesla designed to harness the energy of the Falls and convert it to electricity.|
|1898||Demonstration of Tesla’s remote controlled boat in New York, the first remote control device.|
|1902||Construction on Wardenclyffe, Tesla’s laboratory facility is completed.|
|1915||Tesla’s financial problems caused him to lose the lease on Wardenclyffe. It is eventually used for scraps during World War I.|