Tesla museum fundraising effort hits $850K goal in one week

Effort to raise money to buy the land on which wireless pioneer Nikola Tesla's last laboratory sat surpasses target -- with 39 days left in the campaign.

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Wireless pioneer Nikola Tesla. Wikipedia

A crowdfunding effort to build a museum to honor scientist Nikola Tesla has surpassed its $850,000 goal by more than $35,000 -- with more than a month to go in the funding drive.

Announced last week by The Oatmeal, aka Matthew Inman, the goal is to build a museum to honor the achievements of Tesla, the inventor and electrical engineer credited with making early strides in wireless communications. The funds will be used to buy land in Shoreham, N.Y., on which Tesla's last laboratory stood.

The land is listed for sale at $1.6 million, but Inman said the state of New York had pledged to match the $850,000 goal if it were reached -- making for $100,000 beyond the asking price.

Inman, who is a bit of a Tesla fan, said today that an anonymous donor's gift of $33,000 surpassed the goal.

Even though the fund-raising goal to purchase the property has been reached, Inman notes that there is still more work to be done to build the museum.

The $1.7 million "isn't enough to build an actual museum/science center," he said in a blog post. "But it will effectively put the property into the right hands so it can eventually be renovated into something fitting for one of the greatest inventors of our time."

The flexible funding drive awards gifts for various levels of contributions, including a poster autographed by Tesla's last known surviving relative. There are 39 days left in the fund-raising effort.