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Elon Musk gives $1M to the Nikola Tesla Museum — plus a surprise contribution

Tesla museum donation
Image Credit: The Oatmeal

Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk just honored his company’s namesake to the tune of $1 million.

Musk confirmed that he plans to donate $1 million to spur the completion the Nikola Tesla Museum, according to a blog post today from web cartoonist The Oatmeal (also known as Matthew Inman). But that’s not all: Musk also said Tesla Motors will build a supercharger station for its electric vehicles in the museum’s parking lot.

Musk’s generous contribution is a huge boon for The Oatmeal’s “Let’s Build a Goddamn Tesla Museum” project, which started as a crowdfunding campaign to buy back Nikola Tesla’s old laboratory in 2012. The campaign ultimately raised over $1.37 million, plus a matching $850,000 pledge from the state government of New York. But The Oatmeal and its Tesla Science Center organization need a lot more to turn the abandoned property into a fully fledged museum honoring the Serbian inventor and engineer.

After reviewing the Tesla Model S in a hilarious, endearing comic this May, The Oatmeal added a second comic politely requesting some financial assistance from Musk for the Tesla museum.

“This is not a demand or an accusation or a plea. It’s a polite request from a humongous fan,” The Oatmeal wrote in the comic.

Musk quickly got back to The Oatmeal, tweeting that he “would be happy to help.”

The Oatmeal originally requested $8 million from Musk, the full amount required to complete and open the museum — but we’d say $1 million and a supercharger station are a pretty great start.

The Oatmeal seems to agree.

“Elon Musk: From the deepest wells of my geeky little heart: thank you,” he wrote in a blog post today. “This is amazing news. And it’s Nikola Tesla’s 158th birthday. Happy Nikola Tesla Day.”

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