In cooperation with the Nikola Tesla Museum in Belgrade


Let the future tell the truth, and evaluate each one according to his work and accomplishments. The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine. Nikola Tesla



“Invention is the most important product of man's creative brain. The ultimate purpose is the complete mastery of mind over the material world, the harnessing of human nature to human needs.”
(Nikola Tesla, My Inventions)

Nikola Tesla was born on 10 July 1856 in the village of Smiljan near Gospić in Lika, on the military frontier of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. His father Milutin was an Orthodox priest, and his mother Duka also descended from a family of priests. In the numerous interviews he gave as an already famous inventor in the United States of America Tesla talked about his happy, playful and mischievous childhood spent surrounded by his big family, as a precocious child already demonstrating his future ingenuity. Having completed his schooling in Smiljan and Gospić, Tesla attended the Higher Real Gymnasium in Karlovac, where he realised that he wanted to dedicate his professional life to electricity. However, his father, who wanted Nikola to become a priest, consented to his son’s wish only after Nikola had recovered from a severe illness. Tesla thus entered the Polytechnic College in Graz, Austria, and stayed in Maribor, Slovenia, for a brief spell during his studies. Despite earning excellent grades, Tesla never officially completed his schooling there, and pursued further studies at the Charles University in Prague. In 1881, he took a position in the Central Telegraph Office of the Hungarian government in Budapest, which was also associated with Thomas Edison's telegraph subsidiary. He found employment at the European branch of Edison’s company in Paris and worked for a brief spell in Strasbourg. Unable to raise sufficient funds to continue his project, Tesla went to the US and in 1884 found employment at the Edison Laboratory in New York. He spent the greatest part of his life in the United States, apart from two visits to Europe. His adopted city was New York, where he stayed in numerous hotels ever since his arrival to the US. He died on 7 January 1943 in his New Yorker hotel room. Louis Adamič, an American writer of Slovenian descent, concluded Tesla’s obituary by saying, “His life was a triumph.”