Nikola Tesla (born in Smiljan in 1856, and died in New York in 1943) was one of the greatest inventors of the 20th century. He was born in Lika, attended elementary and grammar school in Smiljan, Gospić and Karlovac, and studied in Graz, Austria.
His inventions in electrical engineering and discoveries in physics not only left a deep mark on science, but also improved the quality of life in general, which is why he earned the title of “the man who invented the 20th century”. He invented, among other things, the alternating current generator, which is the foundation of modern-day power engineering. While his colleague Thomas Alva Edison advocated the use of direct current, Tesla invented the polyphase system and the transformer, enabling the cheap transmission of high-voltage electricity over great distances, and thus its widespread use.
He is considered to be the father of the radio, although during his lifetime, this honor had been awarded to Marconi. The US Supreme Court righted this wrong in 1943, ruling that Tesla was the true radio pioneer, but despite Tesla’s obtaining this satisfaction, Marconi is still often credited with inventing the radio. He considered the invention of radio communication to be one of his greatest inventions. He also worked on wireless energy transmission (his last large project was the construction of a gigantic tower on Long Island), he discovered X-rays and the electron, and through his inventions, he was the predecessors of modern weapons, such as cruise missiles, as well as the Internet, because as far as a hundred years ago, he had promoted the idea of “a global system for connecting communications into a global system”. He left behind more than 700 patents, and many of his inventions are still shrouded in secrecy. The man who blazed the trail for the technological development of the modern age died in New York, without any public recognition, somewhat forgotten and alone. The injustice done to this “electric wizard” is evidenced by the fact that as many as three Nobel prizes have been given for inventions pioneered by Tesla: J. J. Thompson was awarded the prize for discovering the electron, W. Röntgen for discovering X-rays, and G. Marconi for inventing the radio. In the last several decades, however, Tesla has become a sort of a scientific icon. The unit of measurement of magnetic induction has been named the tesla, while more recently, an electric car brand has also been named after him. Another interesting fact is that Tesla was fluent in eight languages.
The memorial center’s opening hours
Summer hours (April 1 - October 31)
Tuesday-Sunday: 9 A.M. - 8 P.M.
Winter hours (November 1 - March 31)
Tuesday-Saturday: 8 A.M. - 2 P.M.
We are closed on: Sundays, Mondays, holidays and public holidays
- Adults: 50 HRK
- Groups of more than 15 people: 30 HRK
- Children over the age of 7, students, retirees: 20 HRK
- Family ticket: 80 HRK
- Expert guide in Croatian for a group (up to 50 people) – 100 HRK
- Expert guide in a foreign language for a group (up to 50 people) – 150 HRK
- Groups visiting the Center without an expert guide can stay in the birth-house for a maximum of 45 minutes.
Information and appointmentsNikola Tesla Memorial Center
- For group visits, we recommend checking in advance:
Phone: +385 (0)53 74 65 30
Fax: +385 (0)53 74 65 38
Museum Director: Vesna Bunčić
Head of the Memorial Center: Mile Čorak