Which side of "The Current War" are you on? DC or AC?

+21 votes

The DC vs. AC "current war" of the 1890s is the subject of a movie being released this Friday, October 25.

The story revolves around Thomas Edison, George Westinghouse and Nikola Tesla, so we've put all three of them in the Connection Finder this week!

Which side are you on, genealogically-speaking? Check your connections to them and see, then share here!

To read more about these three mighty inventors and their connections see: https://www.wikitree.com/blog/current-war-connections/


WikiTree profile: Thomas Edison
in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.8m points)
Hey - the connections to Westinghouse may update tonight. He was missing quite a few relatives and I added several to his paternal line that connected to a large Brimmer line that could update his connections tonight. There's still more that can be easily added that would change his connections even more, so hopefully I can get some additional time to look into these further, or someone else might also take a look. Either way, I suspect Westinghouse can be brought even closer to the tree with just a little effort.
I didnt register with any of them. lol. Maybe because I am hispanic.
Huh! I share a direct ancestor with Thomas Edison. 19 degrees, 6th cousins 6x removed. It's funny because I live in his birth town
My connection is through my husband's line.
I am actually connected to all 3 of them.  To Edison through my husband, and the other 2 are through my mother's side.  Very interesting

Shirley Thomason

Surprised to learn of my distant connections to all 3 gents:

  • 21 degrees from Thomas Edison
  • 32 degrees from Nikola Tesla
  • 24 degrees from George Westinghouse

Had never given this any thought, so thanks for the interesting idea, Eowyn!

I am also related to all three. This was a fun one. Thanks to all who make this possible.
After adding 4 new connection lines to Westinghouse, my connection count dropped by 3. And I'm now related to him - distantly - 14th cousins 5x removed.
I went from 14 degrees and unrelated George Westinghouse to 14 degrees and a 14th cousin 4x removed.
Hey!! Me too!! through my 2nd & 3rd cousins. Now you too are part of my tree; nice to meet u couz. :)
Me too.  When I joined, all my links to anchors went through my wife's cousin, who was already here, and had connections to the outside world in Sydney.  Now I have quite a few of my own.  I tried the Anchors page during the changeover, and things were a bit strange. The link to Westinghouse still takes me to Cari Starosta?

I am a ham radio operator, and I would vote for AC every time. With a DC grid, transformers wouldn't work (power grids run at high voltage and low current, to reduce the losses in the resistance of the cables, and transformers are still used there), all electric water heating elements, in HWS or electric kettles, would need to be enclosed (the reason is a bit techy,) and electric switches would need to be built more sturdily, because AC extinguishes flashovers on the contacts.

35 Answers

+9 votes
No close connections: Edison 21, Westinghouse 24, and Tesla 29.
by Michelle Enke G2G6 Pilot (287k points)
+10 votes
Thanks for the fun idea Eowyn. I am only related to Thomas Edison, a 6th cousin 3x removed. Edison and Westhinghouse are 14 degrees from me whilst Tesla is 25 degrees. After Scott Fulkerson's work Westinghouse still 14 degrees but now a 14th cousin 4x removed.
by T Stanton G2G6 Pilot (218k points)
edited by T Stanton
I'm also a 6th cousin, 3x removed from Edison, but my connection path (which follows the blood connections) is longer than T's, at 16 steps.

And I'm 20 steps from Westinghouse and 29 from Tesla, but no blood relationship with either of them.
Joining the Edison sixth cousin club - four times removed for me. 16 degrees of separation.

Fairly distant from and unrelated to Westinghouse and Tesla - 21 and 26 degrees respectively.
I'm also a 6th cousin (5 removed) from Edison. But I feel like I would have gotten along with Tesla better :)
After Scott Fulkerson's research (in the last couple of days) to expand George Westinghouse's family connections, many of us are likely to be more closely related to George Westinghouse than we appeared to be when this thread was started. On Tuesday I was 20 steps from Westinghouse; on Wednesday I was 19 steps aways; and today my connection path is only 14 steps -- and he's my 6th cousin twice removed!
Alas, unchanged for me.
+12 votes
I am in the 20s for all three of them.
by N Gauthier G2G6 Pilot (159k points)
+10 votes

Tesla: 24 degrees (no relation)

Westinghouse: 21 degrees (no relation)

Edison: 17 degrees (through marriage, actual relation is a 7C5R supposedly through Richard Baldwin)

So nothing close by any means! 

by Liz Marshall G2G6 Mach 8 (85.2k points)
+10 votes
Edison 19, Westinghouse 22, Tesla 28. That's surprising.
by C Ryder G2G6 Mach 8 (82.1k points)
+11 votes
This was a bit of a surprise! Something I did not know.  It turns out I have a distant relationship to Thomas Edison (13th cousin 7 times removed).  

On connections

Edison is 25 degree's.

Westinghouse 26 degree's

Tesla 35 degree's

by T Walker G2G6 Mach 2 (22.3k points)
+10 votes
Tesla: 34 degrees, no relation

Edison: 24 degrees, 12th cousin 7x removed

Westinghouse: 24 degrees, no relation

But I side with Tesla
by Richard Shelley G2G6 Pilot (220k points)
+10 votes
Thomas Edison: 7th cousin 4x Removed

George Westinghouse: 21 Degrees Seperated

Nikola Tesla: 29 Degrees Seperated
by Anonymous Anonymous G2G2 (2.4k points)
+11 votes
Thomas Edison- 15 Degrees. (6th cousins 5x removed)

George Westinghouse- 21 Degrees. No relation

Nicola Tesla- 29 Degrees. no relation
by Tina Chase G2G6 Mach 2 (20.8k points)
Tina, that makes us 9th cousins 2x removed. Hello cousin.
+9 votes

I've been a big fan of Nikola Tesla for a little over 20 years now. (I first heard about him when I was in Bosnia, and the more I learned about him, the more impressed I was.)

But to my surprise, my closest relationship is with Thomas Edison. It turns out we're 9th cousins twice removed.

by Greg Slade G2G6 Pilot (459k points)
+7 votes
Hi Cousins,

Edison and I are 6th cousins four times removed (17 degrees). Westinghouse - 22 degrees (not related). Tesla - 28 degrees (not related).
by Melissa Lyman G2G Crew (660 points)
+8 votes
Edison - 18 (7th cousins, 5x removed), Tesla - 29, Westinghouse - 23 - no relationship to the last 2 guys.
by Scott Fulkerson G2G Astronaut (1.2m points)
After adding 4 new connection lines to Westinghouse, my connection count dropped by 3. And I'm now related to him - distantly - 14th cousins 5x removed.
+10 votes

(Who was the prolific relative of Edison's that makes so many answerers here his Xth cousins Y times removed?)

Edison: 33 degrees
Westinghouse: 34 degrees
Tesla: 41 degrees

So genealogically I'm on the side of pre-electrification. (In other words, my answer to "A/C or D/C" is "um, no?".) Or that's what the current state of WikiTree says. :-)

by J Palotay G2G6 Mach 6 (63.6k points)

Your results are even further into the range of candles and handwritten letters than mine.  laugh

Edison has ancestry in 17th-century populations (colonial New England and New Netherland) to which many WikiTreers trace ancestry.
+8 votes
Thanks for fun times with The Current Wars.

Edison- 18 degrees (5th cousins 7 times removed)

Westinghouse- 21 degrees (no relation)

Tesla - 28 degrees (no relation)

All the best, Janet
by Janet Clifton G2G6 Mach 5 (54.8k points)
+9 votes
For fun!  Connected to all three by quite circuitous paths, all on my father's side.  He would have loved to know this!
by Jane Copes G2G6 (8.2k points)
+8 votes
I was 25 - Tesla , 19 - Edison , 20 - Westinghouse.
by Teresa Davis G2G6 Mach 4 (42.7k points)
+8 votes
Well I wanted to be closest to Tesla - but definitely closest to Edison. I'm connected to both of them through my Mom's Mom's side. I'm connected to Westinghouse via my Dad. We should do more of these "wars" - reminds me of "Epic Rap Battles from History"!
by Katherine Gregory G2G1 (1.0k points)
+8 votes
I got all 3. Edison 16, Westinghouse 20 (through my wife), and Tesla 26. Not a direct descendant though - lots of sisters brothers spouse in the connections. But connected none the less!
by Matt Melcher G2G6 Mach 1 (14.9k points)
+7 votes
No close connections for me at all. But those I do have, all came down through my mothers maternal  grandfathers line.

Tesla - 33 degrees

Westinghouse - 25 degrees

Edison - 22 degrees
by Robynne Lozier G2G6 Pilot (961k points)
+7 votes

Thomas Edison - 14th cousins four times removed

by Karen Wells G2G6 (9.4k points)

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