Thomas Edison Invented A Supernatural 'Telephone' That Still Stumps Scientists Today

You and a few friends decide to make the evening a little extra spooky by pulling out a Ouija board and trying to "contact the dead." Your hands move as the planchette glides across the board, slowly spelling out... your name! You cry out in fright, but your friends burst out laughing: it was all just a trick. You begin laughing too, red-faced for having fallen for it — after all, only kids believe in ghosts... right?

Believe it or not, two of history's brightest minds were actually dedicated ghost hunters, convinced of the presence of specters within our physical world. To that end, these men built tools to contact such spirits — and the messages that returned from the other side are enough to make anyone's hair stand on end.

Considered the fathers of modern technology, Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla both had competitive streaks to match their towering intellects — especially when it came to stacking up against one another.

The pair first crossed paths when Tesla emigrated to New York to work for the Continental Edison Company. He quickly rose through the ranks as an engineer, though Edison didn't see the promise in the young man that many of his colleagues did.

Following a joke offer of $50,000 from Edison for 24 of his designs, Tesla quit ConEd after just six months on the job. He set out to create a manufacturing and utility company of his own, and in April 1887, the Tesla Electric Company was born.

Tesla's reputation as a brilliant inventor only continued to grow, eventually drawing the attention of his former employer. Edison was far more established within the scientific community at this point, though there was no denying the growing tensions between the two heavyweights.