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The Glory of Byzantium



Please click here to see Frescos of Serbia Exhibited in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

May/June 2004


At the crossroads between East and West

Serbia, in the Balkan Peninsula, at the crossroad between East and West, has imprinted on its soil the witness of a rich civilization.  

The international roads from Western Europe to the Middle East and Asia are passing through Serbia.

Serbian people were an important part of the Byzantine civilization inheriting from Byzantium Christianity, art, culture and frescos.  Serbian frescos are the medieval paintings on the walls of Serbian Monasteries and Churches from the twelfth and fourteenth centuries.  Those are exceptionally beautiful religious paintings of early Christianity.  The frescos are a part of Unesco heritage.  The Serbian Monasteries and Churches with frescos - paintings on their walls are located mostly in South Serbia and in the Province of Kosovo where the medieval Serbian State was located and flourished.

Serbian Monasteries and Frescos

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Above: The Crucifixion, Church of Our Lady, Studenica Monastery, 1209.


Serbian people have a 1000 years history of Christianity, medieval Serbian Statehood with advanced culture and significant scientific contribution to our civilization. 

Medieval Serbian Statehood

Above: Jug Bogdan and nine Jugovics before the Kosovo battle (1389).

Above: Prince Lazar and Princess Milica

Above: St Sava - Obtained the independence of the Serbian Orthodox Church from Byzantine Church.  He was the first Serbian Archiepiscopal and son of Serbian Medieval Ruler Stevan Nemanja.

Above: St. Sava Cathedral in Belgrade, the biggest Cathedral in the whole Balkans.  The Cathedral was built in Vracar, Belgrade where the body of St Sava was burned by the Turks.


Above: Burning of St. Sava's body, 1594.

Great Serbian historical figures shaped the history of the Balkans and south-east Europe

Above: Crowning of Czar Dusan in Skopje, 1350.

Above: Czar Dusan, the great Serbian Ruler.

Above: The Serbian Medieval Nemanjic Dynasty

Above: Prince Lazar was decapitated by the Turks in the Kosovo battle.  He is proclaimed a Saint by the Serbian Orthodox Church.

Above: The Battle of Kosovo (1389), the Ottoman Turks who outnumbered Serbs 10 to 1, defeated the Serbian Army.

Above: Serbian Hero Milos Obilic swearing on the evening before the Kosovo battle that he will kill Sultan Murat which he later did.

Above: Karadjordje Petrovic, the leader of the first Serbian Uprising against the Turks, 1804.

Above: Second Serbian Uprising Against Turks with Prince Milos Obrenovic, 1815.

Above: Prince Milos Obrenovic (1788 - 1862), leader of the second Serbian uprising against the Turks, 1815.


Above: Prince Mihailo Obrenovic, Modern ruler of Serbia (1860 - 1868).


Above: King Peter I Karadjordjevic, ruler of Serbia 1903-1918.  Democratic Serbian Ruler, Serbia flourished during his time.

Above: King Aleksandar Karadjordjevic (1888 - 1934), founder of Yugoslavia, 1918.
Yugoslav Ruler from 1918 - 1934.


Serbian scientists gave significant contribution to the world



Nikola Tesla (1856 - 1943)

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Above: Nikola Tesla holding a gas-filled phosphor-coated light bulb which was illuminated without wires by an electromagnetic field from the "Tesla Coil".

tesla1.jpgNikola Tesla (1856-1943) was the genius who lit the world, whose discoveries in the field of alternating polyphase current electricity advanced the United States and the rest of the world into the modern industrial era.

Nikola Tesla had 700 patents in the US and Europe. Tesla's discoveries include the Tesla Coil, fluorescent light,Tesla Statue wireless transmission of electrical energy, radio, remote control, discovery of cosmic radio waves and use of ionosphere for scientific purposes.


Michael Idvorsky Pupin (1854 -1935)

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Above: Michael Idvorsky Pupin (1854 -1935) the great inventor, a great educator and an applied physicist, undeniably was and still is one of the great shining stars in the history of the American science.

"Every time you make a long distance telephone call, tune your radio to a new station, or get x-rayed by your doctor, you are using one of the many practical inventions of Michael Pupin.  His inventions contribute substantially to our daily life" - Edward F. Bergman

Above: Pupin Physics Laboratories, Columbia University, New York. 

This famous building was given the name "Pupin Physics Laboratories" after Pupin's death in 1935.  There are 29 Noble Prize winners who did their scientific work at this famous building. Significant scientific discoveries in the 20th century took place in this building.  The "Manhattan Project" which produced the first Atomic Bomb started with scientific research conducted in Pupin Physics Laboratories.

Columbia University has 61 Noble Prize winners which is unsurpassed in the history of science and research.  American President Eisenhower was also the President of Columbia University.



Mileva Maric (1875-1948)

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Click here for more information on Albert Einstein

Above: Picture of Einstein and Mileva Maric taken in 1911 when both were in their early thirties.
Mileva entered Einstein's life in a crucial period of his scientific achievements and helped him in his endeavor.  Einstein's marriage to Mileva was an intellectual partnership. 

Recent evidence suggests that Mileva is the co-author of the "Theory of Relativity"




Milutin Milankovic (1879- 1958)

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Above: Milutin Milankovic (1879- 1958) The great astronomer, mathematician and scientist

Above: Milankovic Cycles - The Earth's Orbit

For centuries Serbs fought against foreign invaders to keep Serbian land that flourished in the Middle Ages under Nemanjic dynasty.  In 1389 the Serbian Army met, at the Kosovo Field, the Ottoman Turks invaders, who according to contemporary sources, counted  ten times more soldiers than the Serbian Army.  In these unbalanced confrontations of military forces, Serbs lost the battle.  Prince Lazar was decapitated by the Turks and Sultan Murat was killed by the Serbian hero Milos Obilic.  But the Serbian spirit was never defeated.  Kosovo Battle gave the Serbs the spiritual and moral strength to fight the Infideles, who came from Asia.


Serbs also defended the Christian Europe against the Ottoman Turks.  They built a defensive border, called “Military Frontier” at the South-East border of Austro-Hungarian Monarchy which extended a thousand miles from the Adriatic Coast and Lika Region to Voyvodina – the northern part of Yugoslavia.  For their bravery, Serbs were given land by the Austrian Empress.

Serbia is today as it was throughout centuries a meeting place between East and West , a symbol of Christianity, a land of rich history and great achievements.