Tesla c. 1890
Tesla c. 1890

Historical Character

Name: Nikola Tesla

Age: 65

Gender: Male

Race/Ethnicity: Serbian-American

Profession: Engineer/Physicist

Location: Shoreham, New York

Personal Traits. Skills, Abilities and Characteristics: Intelligent, Inventive

Biography (ca. 1921):

Nikola Tesla was born in 1856. As a young man, Tesla enjoyed watching the great steam-powered zeppelins and other aerial machines as they transported goods across the skies of Europe. His early inventions often melded electrical and steam technologies to create amalgamations, often as elegant as they were practical.

In 1895, Tesla shocked the world – and especially his former collaborator, Thomas Edison – by creating an automaton that ran entirely on electrical power and could be piloted by a human being remotely, using natural limb movements within a control cradle. Edison responded with his own, stronger, version of Tesla’s invention, leading to a patent war between the Westinghouse and General Electric companies – a war that culminated in 1898 with a literal battle between huge electric-steam automatons piloted remotely by George Westinghouse and J.P. Morgan in the middle of Madison Square Garden. The results were catastrophic, naturally, but both participants were enormously wealthy, so they got away with it just fine

Tesla’s Teleforce weapons were used in the Great War, though their use proved ineffective against newer, stronger German steam automatons, which simply absorbed the particle beams and continued their march onward. Regardless, Tesla garnered quite a reputation for himself, and by 1908, his plans for the Wardenclyffe facility were well on their way to being complete. The structure, Tesla claimed, would be capable of delivering free electrical power to everyone in the United States, using the Earth’s own electromagnetic fields as a medium of transference. Even more wondrously, he claimed that the tower would also allow for the transmission of material worldwide – including images, news articles, and possibly even motion pictures. Construction for this elaborate facility began in 1912, and by 1919, the facility is still under construction, with an estimated completion date of 1926.