Overlooking the majestic Horseshoe Falls at Queen Victoria Park is the statue of a brilliant man, Nikola Tesla. This Serbian-American scientist was the pioneer of the alternating current (AC) electricity supply system.
He literally lit up the lives of many people by designing the first hydroelectric power plant that started producing electrical power in 1895 at Niagara Falls, New York. His AC induction motor was path-breaking because electricity could travel long distances as a result of it. This led to the electrification of America, and Tesla along with George Westinghouse paved the way for the process to be replicated around the world. While Thomas Edison’s direct current (DC) is a very significant achievement, it was Tesla’s AC that became an important tool for human beings because of its usefulness. The Nikola Tesla Niagara Falls Ontario statue at the Queen Victoria Park is a tribute to the genius who help mankind discover something precious. There is another statue of this amazing scientist in Goat Island, New York as well.
When he was a young boy, Tesla saw a picture of the Niagara Falls and was captivated by the sight of the mighty waters. He wanted to harness the power of the flowing waters by placing a wheel under the falls and years later, his wish actually came true. His invention led to the construction of the first AC hydroelectric power plant in Niagara Falls. In doing so, Tesla showed that the Falls were not just a thing of beauty but also a powerful tool that helped humanity. Today, Tesla’s statue stands tall overlooking the spectacular falls that inspired his invention. It has been erected at the same spot from where the photograph that Tesla saw during his childhood had been taken.
The statue was unveiled in 2006 on what would have been Tesla’s 150th birthday and was sponsored by the St. George Serbian Orthodox Church of Niagara. The 2000 pound bronze statue depicts Tesla in a tuxedo, long overcoat and top hat standing on an AC motor which is one of the 700 inventions that he patented. Designed by Les Drysdale, from Hamilton, Ontario, the statue has Tesla holding a cane in his right hand. This depicts the moment when he created the concept of alternating current by drawing diagrams with his cane on the ground.
During your trip to Niagara Falls Ontario visit Queen Victoria Park; not just view the powerful Niagara Falls but also to see the Nikola Tesla statue and salute the man who revolutionised the world through his inventions.
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