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1856Next year »

July 10th, 1856: Tesla's Birth

Tesla was born "at the stroke of midnight" with lightning striking during a summer storm. He was born to a Serbian family in Smiljan near Gospić, Lika, (the Military Frontier of Austria-Hungary, now in Croatia). The midwife commented, "He'll be a child of the storm," to which his mother replied, "No, of light." Tesla was baptized in the Old Slavonic Church rite. His Baptism Certificate reports that he was born on June 28 (Julian calendar; July 10 in the Gregorian calendar) 1856, and christened by the Serbian orthodox priest, Toma Oklobdžija.

The remains of the original church after World War II bombing.
The remains of the original church after World War II bombing.
The remains of the original church after World War II bombing. Interior view of Tesla's birthplace. View of the Tesla birthplace including the barn with straw roofing. Oldest known photo (1933) of Tesla's birthplace in Smiljan, Croatia. Close-up view of the renovated church at Tesla's birthplace.