We’re fans of The Oatmeal and its hijinks, but funny is not all it does. Site creator Matthew Inman also has a bit of philanthropy up his sleeve too, and he fancies saving the Tesla Tower to turn it into a goddamn museum.
The main goal of the fundraiser, dubbed “Operation Let’s Build a Goddamn Tesla Museum“, is to convert Wardenclyffe, Tesla’s laboratory in Shoreham, New York, into a museum and science centre honouring the Serbian-American inventor. The tower was originally designed to transmit free wireless energy to the world, but Tesla unfortunately lost funding before the whole thing was completed.
Wardenclyffe itself was demolished in 1917, but the land, lab and foundation beneath it still exists. The tower itself recently went up for sale, and a local non-profit group, the Tesla Science Center at Wardenclyffe, is trying to raise up the funds to buy the property. Which is quite a pricey $US1.6 million. The group has received a matching grant from New York State for $US850,000 meaning they only need to raise another $US850k to total funds to $US1.7m, but there is currently another offer on the table from someone who wants to buy the land, potentially tear down the lab and build a retail establishment on top. Now that doesn’t sound too good.
This is where dear readers of The Oatmeal and fans of science can come together and pitch in to save the tower, and if they can outbid the other person and buy the land, it will then be permanently protected as a historic site and eventually be converted into an awesome Nikola Tesla Museum. Rad.