(Nikola) Tesla drove a modified Pierce Arrow automobile with an electrical motor powered by what he called ‘cosmic energy’ (that was far more advanced than) the primitive technology now being produced using Tesla’s name.Adam Trombly, astrophysicist.
Nikola’s Electric Car by Jeane Manning
“Why would Tesla decide to keep his invention a secret?”
The producer for the History Channel was not asking Jeane about Elon Musk’s car company. Instead, his company Prometheus Entertainment was shooting a documentary series, then titled The Tesla Files, for the History Channel. He said it focuses on Nikola Tesla’s inventions and how some of his research might have been compromised or hidden by outside interests.[i]
An article Jeane had written cited evidence that Nikola Tesla’s rumored Pierce Arrow sedan had indeed been self-powered, so the producer offered a flight to Buffalo, New York for her to be interviewed for the filming. A few weeks after she agreed, the schedule for filming moved forward. A previous commitment to speak at an International Women’s Conference on Future Energy[ii] meant she had to decline the opportunity to be on the Tesla documentary.
The producer’s question however nagged at Jeane, since she had learned that after Tesla was prevented from bringing his World Broadcast System into production, he worked to develop a smaller version of the device that harnessed the same principles.
Jeane met a slice of the story in Germany
A 2006 gathering in Germany to honor Nikola Tesla had no translation of German-speaking speakers. When a man named Klaus Jebens spoke, Jeane could only observe that his body language was in alignment with his excited speech. Attendees translated it for her.
Klaus reported that his father, Heinrich Jebens, had taken a ride in Nikola Tesla’s electric car. Later, interpreter Dagmar Kuhn shed further light on the Jebens story for Jeane. Dagmar read the book authored by Klaus Jebens, Die Urkraft aus dem Universum and translated the title: The Elemental Force from the Universe.[iii]
The historical kernel in the book was a photocopy of what the son, Klaus, found in his father’s private papers after Jebens Sr. died. It was a memo his father on 9/12/1930, labeled CONFIDENTIAL in capital letters. The publishers Adolf and Inge Schneider of Jupiter Verlag in Germany sent us a copy of the memo.[iv]
Following is Dagmar’s translation of the father’s memo to himself, titled About visiting Nikola Tesla in New York and Buffalo.
“On November 8th, 1930, I traveled to America from Cuxhaven with the New York fast
steamer. In a very heavy north-west storm I met on 12.11.1930 only three passengers of the first class for dinner. As a former naval officer, I did not have any trouble, while almost all the other passengers were seasick in their berths. At dinner Petar introduced Savo, who was previously an aviation officer in the Austrian Serbian army.”
“After I told him of my imminent visit to the great inventor Thomas Alva Edison, he became amused and insisted on a conversation with his uncle Nikola Tesla. In addition to Edison, he was one of the greatest inventors in America. We then exchanged our US addresses.”
“After my visit to Edison in his laboratory in Orange, I received a message from Nikola Tesla. We met at the Waldorf Astoria hotel. Mr. Tesla made the suggestion that we should go to Buffalo the next day, where, as (I was) head of the German Inventory House, he would show me, under strict secrecy, his working car, driven by one of his earlier patents with ether energy”.
“The next morning Mr. Tesla brought along an oblong suitcase. He mentioned that this was the “key to success”, which he would still like to present to me today.”
“The car was in a hall on the edge of Buffalo, where a mechanic was waiting for us. It was a “Pierce-Arrow” passenger car, which had the gasoline engine and the tank removed. A collector-less AC coil motor was mounted on the clutch housing by means of a traverse. A small battery served to supply the lights, headlights and horn.
“From the case, the installer removed a converter, which was fixed on the passenger side. This was followed by a cable connected to an antenna rod at the rear of the car. Another cable went through the floor to a sanding shoe. Furthermore, a ¼-inch cable was passed from the converter via a foot switch from the driver’s seat and from there to the electric motor. Another cable led back from the motor to the converter.
“While Mr. Tesla showed me the car exactly and explained, the car was prepared by the installer for a test drive. Within half an hour this became possible. I sat down on the back seat. Mr. Tesla took a seat on the passenger seat, where he pushed two levers protruding from the converter. Then you could clearly see the engine running. “Now we have energy,” said Mr. Tesla. He ordered the installer to take a trip to the Niagara Falls.”
“I noticed that the engine was still not reacting properly. The car always went at very high speed. On my question, Mr. Tesla said that this was not yet finished. It would take some time.”
“Arriving at Niagara Falls, the mechanic had to wait about an hour because Mr. Tesla should now show me the new turbo-power plant, which was built according to his ideas. This was very impressive.”
“Then we went back to the hall with the Pierce-Arrow. The driving characteristics were again the same. The car drove as with invisible force. The installer had to remove the converter and put it back into the suitcase, Mr. Tesla mentioning that the time for this technique was not yet ripe. There was plenty of gasoline and cost less than 15 pennies per liter.”
Personally, I got the impression that Mr. Tesla is pushing this development into an area without which one will no longer be able to cope in the foreseeable future, since petroleum deposits in the world appear limited and will consume over time.”
“In the late conversation with Mr. Tesla I learned further details that the basic idea for this car comes from one of his earlier patents, in which he transformed the properly recognized ether energy from electromagnetic waves into electric voltage that exists all over the world and in the world is. All the stars are thereby controlled. According to his explanation, it is not so difficult to tap this force and to use it after a change by a converter from which there are unspeakable amounts of energy. It is only necessary to choose the right path which he does not want to talk about yet. He only mentioned that this converter gave so much energy that he could supply an entire house with electric power.”
“The people of this earth can never consume (use all of) this energy. It is very cheap because it costs practically nothing. But at the moment the oil companies behind it are not yet to use this newly found energy, in order to be able to exploit the business with the petroleum for the time being. Mr. Tesla thought the time was not yet ready to come on the market with this new engine drive. In a number of years, however, this will become indispensable.”
“After our return to New York, we continued to talk about numerous patent questions and developments until midnight, and Mr. Tesla said that Edison, as a new honorary member of the German Inventory House, occupies a very special position. However, Mr. Tesla has far surpassed the remarkable successes of Edison with his alternating current. But he did not always make the better decisions about his patents. “
“The long conversation with Mr. Tesla, longer than that with Edison, had greatly inspired me in my further deliberations. We said goodbye with the assurance that we would continue our conversation on my next trip to America.”
“Mr. Tesla made a refined and very elegant impression, but what seemed a bit strange to a European, he gave no hand to anyone (did not shake hands).”
Signed J e b e n s
Jeane learned that the team researching for the History Channel had searched Edison’s archives. They verified that Jebens, Sr., did visit Edison when Jebens’ memo said he had.
[i] Joshua Koffman phone call August, 2017, to Jeane Manning, A few weeks later, the date for filming a Buffalo, NY, segment was moved forward. Jeane had to decline the opportunity to be interviewed, because of a commitment to speak at an International Women’s Forum on Future Energy.
[ii] The International Women’s Conference on Future Energy was part of Expo 2017, Astana, Kazakhstan
[iii] Jebens, Klaus, Die Urkraft aus dem Universum Jupiter-Verlag, Zurich 2006, ISBN 3-906571-23-8