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History » Istorija | 75 five cents in his pocket, while his fellow famous Serbian-American scientist, Nikola Tesla, arrived penniless. It was while at the port of New York that Tesla spotted a man who was unable to repair a machine in his store. Tesla offered his assistance to repair the machine and earned himself his first $20 in the U.S. Although many immigrantshadnomoney, theybroughtwiththemsomething more valuable: a heart filled with the will to work and the readiness to sacrifice. Many Serbian immigrants were young, unmarried menwho livedwith their compatriots inboarding houseswhere rent andmealswere cheap. As immigrant numbers grew, theybeganorganising themselves intoorganisations, cultural societies, fraternal associations, churches and schools, in an effort to preserve their ethnic and religious identity. In 1892, Father John Dabovich founded the first Serbian Orthodox Diocese, and in 1894, the Church of St. Sava became the first Serbian Orthodox church in North America, in Jackson, California. Many immigrants lacked any specific job skills and didn’t speak English. As such, they were only able to find work in mines and the steel industry, or travelling throughout the country building railroads. Only a small minority of them could afford to own businesses, such as grocery stores, restaurants and saloons. Work in the mines and the steel industrywas very arduous and insecure, as they laboured under very difficult working conditions and had shifts lasting 12 hours per day. Mining accidentswerevery commonand resulted inmanyworkers losing their lives.TheAmericanSrbobranpublication reported these accidents in themines and steel industry. Inoneofmanyarticles, itwas reported that 1,500miners Čak 11 američkih Beograda Marinel Madreš u studiji Srpski toponimi u Severnoj Americi tvrdi da postoji više od 53.000 srpskih obeležja u Americi. Najčešće korišćen toponim je Beograd, koji se pojavljuje u čak 11 američkih država: Ilinoisu, Mejnu, Montani, Minesoti, Misuriju, Teksasu, Nebraski, Severnoj Karolini, Masačutetsu, Koloradu i Virdžiniji. U Kaliforniji je u čast velikog naučnika osnovan grad Nikola Tesla, koji je bio poznat po proizvodnji uglja. 11 American Belgrades Writing in the paper “Serbian Toponyms in North America”, Marinel Mandres states that there are more than 53,000 Serbian toponyms in the U.S. The most common Serbian name in the country is Belgrade, which appears in 11 states: Illinois, Maine, Montana, Minnesota, Missouri, Texas, Nebraska, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Colorado, and Virginia. California even has a coal town called Nikola Tesla, in honour of the great scientist and inventor. had been killed in accidents in just one month in Pennsylvania. One accident, which occurred on St. Nicholas Day, resulted in the deaths of 400 miners. Fortunately for the Serbian miners, they were not among the dead that day because they were at home celebrating the ‘Slava’, i.e., patron saint’s day, of St Nicholas. WorldWar I (1914–1918) provided anexcellent example of how many Serbian immigrants were ready to sacrifice their lives for America, but also to defend their Mother Land fromAustro-Hungarian invasion. Serbian immigrants helped theirMother Land through political engagement, collecting aid for civilians and sending Serbian volunteers to the Serbian army, and later by joining theAmericanarmy. U.S. PresidentWoodrowWilson recognised the Serbian sacrifice and loyalty to freedomand justice demonstrated in World War I, and on 28th July, 1918, the Serbian flag was raised over theWhite House and all public buildings in Washington D.C. At the beginning of World War II, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt mentioned a few courageous nations who were bravely fighting against Nazi Germany, withSerbiaamongthem.AgreatnumberofSerbianimmigrants never returned fromthewar, while some of those that did were decorated by the American Government. “If I am fortunate enough to fulfil at least some of my ideals, that will do good for the whole mankind,” said Serbian-American scientist and inventor Nikola Tesla (1856 – 1943) Osvećivanje prve srpske pravoslavne crkve Sveti Sava, Džekson, Kalfornija, 1894. The consecrating of the Church of Saint Sava, the first Serbian Orthodox church in the U.S., in Jackson, California, 1894