This Colorized Photo Will Change How You Look At Nikola Tesla

Perhaps most known now for the car that bears his name, Nikola Tesla was an enigmatic figure that is considered to be one of the greatest inventors of all time (via Live Science). According to Biography, his inventions include alternating current electricity and the Tesla coil, both of which are still used today. Born in 1856 in modern-day Croatia, Smithsonian Magazine states that Tesla's brilliance was apparent from an early age. His father, who was a priest, wanted his son to join the priesthood, but that was out of the question for Tesla, who was all about science.

Per History, in 1884, Tesla immigrated to New York and went to work for Thomas Edison. The pair worked side by side, and Edison was impressed by the young man's dedication and diligence. Due to a financial disagreement, Tesla left Edison's company and began to dig ditches for a living. He later established his own company and received financial support from George Westinghouse, a businessman and engineer. Tesla's revolutionary innovations, however, tend to be easily overshadowed by his bizarre personality and lifestyle.

Nikola Tesla in color

In this 1890 photo, Tesla would have been in his early 30s. His chiseled face and slight smile portray a handsome man who has his life in order. With his sleek coat and shaven look, Tesla looks more like a businessman than an inventor who is hailed as a mad scientist. In addition, this portrait is inviting and frames Tesla as debonair and dapper. Incredibly detailed, one can see his dark hair and light eyes as they once were. The photo gives the impression that Tesla is always in deep thought, even when looking at the camera. This, however, might be the only truth when it comes to this acclaimed man.

According to Lesson from History, Tesla's peculiarities destroyed his reputation. He rarely slept, had obsessive-compulsive disorder, was a germaphobe, and was fascinated with the number 3. He also hated pearls and had other uncommon aversions. Per Smithsonian Magazine, he had several mental breakdowns throughout his life and later began to rescue pigeons that he kept in his apartment. Notably, the inventor had a fondness for one particular pigeon that he said he loved like a man loves a woman. Speaking of, The Conversation states that Tesla never married and was celibate. In 1943, Tesla died of a heart attack in a New York hotel room at the age of 86 (via Biography). He was broke, reclusive, and in debt.

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.