MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) - A Long Island community group that raised $1.3 million in a six-week Internet crowdfunding effort last year has purchased a laboratory once used by visionary scientist Nikola Tesla.
Jane Alcorn is president of the Tesla Science Center at Wardenclyffe on Long Island. Her group officially bought the Tesla lab and property last week for $850,000.
Tesla was a rival of Thomas Edison who imagined a world of free electricity. He conducted experiments in the early 20th century at his Wardenclyffe laboratory in Shoreham.
Volunteers had struggled for nearly two decades to acquire the property.
They got a jolt of support last year when Seattle cartoonist Matthew Inman promoted the effort on his website, theoatmeal.com.
Within weeks, they had $1.3 million.
Online fundraising site Indiegogo.com said it was the fastest fundraising campaign in the website's history.
The state had previously awarded the science center an $850,000 grant to help purchase the laboratory property.
Alcorn told WCBS 880 last fall that Tesla invented the means by which homes are electrified, as well as bladeless wind turbines and the Tesla coil.
The group said it planned to restore the lab and turn it into a museum.
You May Also Be Interested In These Stories
(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
for more features.