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Nikola Tesla in Colorado Springs

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Nikola Tesla came to Colorado in 1899 to send a signal, he said, from “Pikes Peak to Paris.”

His goal was to harness the earth itself to conduct electricity. To do that, Tesla put up a building east of downtown Colorado Springs, with an electric coil capable of a million volts. When they flipped the switch, the facility filled with artificial lightning while Telsa took meticulous notes. Outside, the neighborhood also took note: butterflies glowed with St Elmo’s Fire, lightbulbs flickered unattached to sockets. On one occasion, Tesla even burned out the local Electric Company.

Then nine months after his arrival, Tesla returned to New York. Back in the Springs, the Tesla Experimental Station stood unused, until it was sold in 1904 for unpaid debts, dismantled, and reused as lumber in the construction of a new house.

About Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards are snapshots of our colorful state in sound. They give brief insights into our people and places, our flora and fauna, and our past and present, from every corner of Colorado.