Charles Proteus Steinmetz (April 9, 1865, - October 26, 1923) was born in Breslau, Prussia (part of Germany at the time) (now known as Wroclaw, Poland). Steinmetz then decided that as he was so often called to look at special problems, GE should form a special consulting department that was composed of the best specialist engineers so that they could swoop down and deal with any emergency. Heart attack Charles Proteus Steinmetz Alternating Current U.S. Patent No. The cookie is set by the GDPR Cookie Consent plugin and is used to store whether or not user has consented to the use of cookies. In a noisy and explosive demonstration witnessed by Edison himself, Steinmetz unveiled a 120,000-volt lightning generator. Steinmetzs lightning produced over a million horsepower for a hundred-thousandth of a second. Steinmetz knew that higher voltages had been made before, specifically by Elihu Thomson, Nikola Tesla and the GE lab. [4] Charles Proteus Steinmetz, The Mentor-World Traveler 13 (May 1925), 14. [34] Charles P. Steinmetz quoted in 1879 Edison Day Oct 21, 1914 The Saturday Evening Post (Oct 17, 1914), 1. Steinmetz Name Meaning German and Jewish (Ashkenazic): occupational name from Middle High German steinmetze, German Steinmetz stonemason, worker in stone. The living arrangement, despite some awkward starts, soon flourished, especially after the Haydens began to have childrenJoe, Midge and Billyand Steinmetz legally adopted Joseph Hayden as his son. One can see the delight and love Steinmetz had for his grandchildren from his photographs of them and their remembrances of their doting grand-daddy. [15] Charles Steinmetz On the Value of the Classics in Engineering Education The Classical Weekly vol. Advertisement cookies are used to provide visitors with relevant ads and marketing campaigns. Terms of Use [4] These were conducted in a football field-sized laboratory at General Electric, using 120,000 volt generators. It has been destroyed.[18] But how to fix that without rejecting technological advances? 3 Why was Charles Steinmetz almost turned away at Ellis Island? STEINMETZ DIES IN SUDDEN RELAPSE; Heart Attack Takes Electrical Wizard While the Nurse Goes for His Breakfast. If you did and hated having to take English, History, and Languages you can blame Steinmetz too, I guess. [20], Steinmetz wrote 13 books and 60 articles, not exclusively about engineering. When some of his fellow party members were arrested, Steinmetz took over the editorship of the party newspaper, The Peoples Voice. One of the articles he wrote was considered inflammatory; the police began a crackdown on the paper, and Steinmetz had to flee Breslau (1888). According to Steinmetz, Steinmetz and Edison had met each other way back in August 1893, at an electrical meeting at the worlds fair in Chicago just after Steinmetzs boss Eickemeyer sold out to GE. After a short stay in Zrich he immigrated to the United States in 1889, traveling by steerage. Charles Proteus Steinmetz (born Karl August Rudolph Steinmetz, April 9, 1865 October 26, 1923) was a German-born American mathematician and electrical engineer and professor at Union College. Ford, whose electrical engineers couldnt solve some problems they were having with a gigantic generator, called Steinmetz in to the plant. Steinmetz, on the other hand, felt that a full liberal education not only would help with knowing the origin of terms but also because the vocation of the engineer is especially liable to make the man one-sided. These were conducted in a football field-sized laboratory at General Electric, using 120,000 volt generators. But knowing that his deformity was congenital (both his father and grandfather were afflicted with kyphosis, an abnormal curvature of the upper spine), Steinmetz chose not to marry, fearful of passing on his deformity. The following day, a headline in the New York Times proclaimed, Modern Jove Hurls Lighting at Will. Steinmetzs work led to the measures used to protect power equipment from lightning strikes. Loki: The Life of Charles Proteus Steimetz. This research led him directly to a study of alternating current, which could eliminate hysteresis loss in motors. Betty M. Adelson. Still, Steinmetz continued to have a steady stream of visitors both engineers and local families. ABOUT. By 1914, as I said before, Steinmetz agreed to let Edison use his words and images to promote Edisons battery. He systematized the use of complex number phasor representation in electrical engineering education texts, whereby the lower-case letter "j" is used to designate the 90-degree rotation operator in AC system analysis. Steinmetzs fame only grew in the years he lived with the Haydens on Wendell Avenue. In 1922, Thomas Edison came to visit Steinmetz. [9] Hammond, Charles Proteus Steinmetz, 400. [39], In May 2015, a life-size bronze statue of Charles Steinmetz meeting Thomas Edison by sculptor and caster Dexter Benedict was unveiled on a plaza on the corner of Erie Boulevards and South Ferry Street in Schenectady. Charles Steinmetz Papers, Schenectady County Historical Society, Schenectady, New York. Steinmetz also greatly advanced the understanding of lightning. Meanwhile, Steinmetz then decided to build his own house, factory, and conservatory, which were described as a Den of incomprehensible perplexity.[9] Steinmetz also bought a little shack on the side of a river as a vacation spot. This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. Charles Proteus Steinmetz/Places lived, April 9, 1865 He soon obtained a job with a small electrical firm owned by Rudolf Eickemeyer in Yonkers, N.Y. At about the same time, Steinmetz Americanized his first name to Charles and substituted Proteus, a university nickname, for his two middle names. [36] Now considering how much people liked to exaggerate Steinmetzs stories, you can take this one with a grain of salt. What did Charles Proteus Steinmetz do? It was around this time that the new president of GE, Edwin Rice agreed to Steinmetzs idea that they should start a research group at GE, which they did at Steinmetzs stable that he was using as a home laboratory. 533,244 Inducted in 1977 Born April 9, 1865 - Died Oct. 26, 1923 Without Charles Steinmetz's theories of alternating current, the expansion of the electric power industry in the United States in the early 20th century would have been greatly delayed. Charles Proteus Steinmetz was certainly one of the important scientists and engineers who, by their research and inventive contributions, helped to design electrical systems and to analyze electrical phenomena by sound scientific methods. [5] Tom D. Crouch A Dream of Wings (W. W. Norton, 2002), 172. German and Jewish (Ashkenazic): occupational name from Middle High German steinmetze, German Steinmetz stonemason, worker in stone. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. One result of Steinmetzs growing reputation was his employment by General Electric Company in its consulting department. Steinmetz loved the trip but found it a bit tiresome and declared that their next one would be to the Mediterranean. A humorous aspect of the story is the "itemized bill" he submitted for the work performed. Steinmetz third major scientific achievement was in the study and theory of electrical transientsthat is, changes in electrical circuits of very short duration. With these, all requirements are complete to develop the most perfect civilization the world has ever seen. McGraw-Hill, 1962. His discoveries changed the way engineers thought about circuits and machines and made him the most recognized name in electricity for decades. There has been no such thing as conservation. At the meeting, Eickemeyer introduced Steinmetz to Edison and Edison turned to them and jokingly pointed at Steinmetz and said pure theory, pointed to Eickemeyer and said, theory and practice and then at himself and said pure practice.[34] Over the years Steinmetz and Edison met at various meetings and soon they began a correspondence. The cookies is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Necessary". One of the articles he wrote was considered inflammatory; the police began a crackdown on the paper, and Steinmetz had to flee Breslau (1888). Corrine Hayden then outlined the terms of their cohabitationSteinmetz would pay only for his share of expenditures. 6. In 1913, Steinmetz felt he was working on the answer: Electricity, my friend! Electricity will take the place of coal, and will do the work a thousandfold better. Steinmetz's connection to Union is further celebrated with the annual Steinmetz Symposium,[32] a day-long event in which Union undergraduates give presentations on research they have done. 10 (1929), 1619. He didn't invent it. | [11] Hammond, Charles Proteus Steinmetz: A Biography, 283-4. Olin building.[35][36]. When did Charles Proteus Steinmetz come to America? Ford acknowledged Steinmetzs success but balked at the figure. What did Charles Steinmetz do at General Electric? To educate the electrical engineering profession, he published several textbooks, including Engineering Mathematics (1911), and expanded his original 1897 book into three separate volumes. [14] Hammond, Charles Proteus Steinmetz: A Biography, 296. Charles Steinmetz (near center) sitting next to Edwin Houston and in front of T. Commerford Martin, See also: Papers of Charles Proteus Steinmetz. If you got a degree in electrical engineering at a college and enjoyed getting a well-rounded education you can thank Steinmetz. [22], While serving as president of the Schenectady Board of Education, Steinmetz introduced numerous progressive reforms, including extended school hours, school meals, school nurses, special classes for the children of immigrants, and the distribution of free textbooks. The cookie is set by GDPR cookie consent to record the user consent for the cookies in the category "Functional". [1] Charles Steinmetz The Vitality of Schenectady (April 7, 1911) Schenectady Board of Trade. But opting out of some of these cookies may affect your browsing experience. Steinmetz was president of the AIEE from 1900-01. Hes dead, Steinmetz replied. STEINMETZ, CHARLESElectrical engineer and socialist Charles Proteus Steinmetz (1865-1923), born in Breslau, Germany, on April 9, was a public figure of the Progressive Era who tried to engineer a better society by creating an early code of engineering ethics, running for political office, and advocating a technocratic form of socialism. How much money did Tesla have when he arrived in America? A collector of rare plants, he had it designed with a greenhouse, as well as a laboratory, where he planned to work as much as possible to avoid going into the office. A Steinmetz solid is the solid body generated by the intersection of two or three cylinders of equal radius at right angles. [35] Gerry Boehme, Henry Ford: Assembly Line and Automobile Pioneer (New York: Cavendish Square Publishing, 2019), 89. Steinmetz tried to warn us that, We have been a wasteful nation because of our great natural wealthwe have been destroying our forests to get lumber in the most extravagant way. Cornell University Professor Ronald R. Kline, author of Steinmetz: Engineer and Socialist,[12] contended that other factors were more directly involved in Steinmetz's decision to leave his homeland such as being in arrears with his tuition at the university and life at home with his father, stepmother and their daughters being tension-filled. In a world that compelled conformity, Steinmetz played by his own rules and had a fantastic time doing it. Moe sarcastically refers to Curly as a "Steinmetz" in the 1944 Three Stooges short Busy Buddies. Joseph Hayden was all for it. 2 (1921), 6. The whole family went together and in Hollywood, Steinmetz was given a tour of the set by non-other than the famous movie star Douglas Fairbanks. In Schenectady, Steinmetz used his influence to create the first industrial cooperative research institute ever, the first consulting department ever, and the first electrical engineering department that was part of a liberal college in the United States (and was influential towards promoting a rounded EE department in colleges everywhere), and was so influential towards the survival of GE that he was allowed to do whatever he wanted. Steinmetz maintained a small cabin overlooking the Mohawk River near Schenectady, New York. Both during his life and after his death, Charles Proteus Steinmetz was often referred to as the Wizard of Schenectady. However, when I looked into his life, most of his famous contributions occurred when he arrived in America, penniless, with no English or practical engineering skills in June of 1889 (he was a political refugee from Germany due to his socialist beliefs), and when he was transferred to Schenectady in February of 1894. When a Socialist mayor took office, Steinmetz served as president of the Schenectady Board of Education and was instrumental in implementing longer school hours, school meals, school nurses, special classes for children of immigrants and the distribution of free textbooks. But toward the end of Steinmetzs life, according to his biographer, Jonathan Norton Leonard, his scientific work had become rather like a boys playing with machinery. He had by then earned the respect of electrical engineers for his contributions to the field, but Steinmetz, at the peak of his celebrity, simply could not help but delighting in the kind of pseudo-science he would have scorned earlier in his career. 5, No. He expressed his desire to communicate his fundamental knowledge to others in the sfimulating instruction he gave to his assistants at the General Electric and in the publication of a large number of scientific papers and electrical books, which have long been accepted as standard textbooks in colleges, laboratories, and workshops. The Father of Electrical Engineering. See, in January 1914, Steinmetz gave a talk with the title of The Future of Automobiling Belongs to the Electic as gas cars were very expensive and, unlike a horse, an electric car requires no attention.[21] Edison immediately asked Steinmetz if he could add that the electric car requires no attention if equipped with an Edison battery.[22] Steinmetz agreed and even signed the ad and Edison used this and his image to promote the Edison battery. He taught at Union College from 1902. At 24, he left Germany because his socialistic affiliations barred him from preferment, and came to the United States practically penniless and knowing almost no English. It started in March of 1903 when Success magazine ran a big article about Steinmetz where they said, he is known and recognized by engineers everywhere as the man who probably knows more about the practical application of electricity than any other man in this country.[13] Soon the newspapers were full of articles about Steinmetz, which was pushed by GE and Union College. Charles Proteus Steinmetz/Date of birth. A public park in north Schenectady, New York was named for him in 1931. [citation needed], Faced with an expiring visa, he emigrated to the United States in 1889. But the first commercial electricity was direct current. He went first to Zurich, then, in 1889 arrived in the United States. Privacy Statement Steinmetz attended Johannes Gymnasium and astonished his teachers with his proficiency in mathematics and physics. Charles Proteus Steinmetz (April 9, 1865 - October 26, 1923) was a mathematician and electrical engineer. Froehlich, Fritz; Kent, Allen (editors, 1990). By that time, he had adopted a new American name: Charles Proteus Steinmetz. Steinmetz also greatly advanced the understanding of lightning. 14 (1922), 26. When did Charles Proteus Steinmetz publish his paper? Then soon after that (or perhaps before), Steinmetz bought a 1914 Detroit Electric, a model 48 Duplex (and no, I dont know enough about old cars to know what that means). The writer put him down as a confirmed agnostic, for an atheist is a person who knows there is no God, and Steinmetz was not of that", Ronald R. Klein, Steinmetz: Engineer and Socialist (Johns Hopkins Studies in the History of Technology), 1992. Steinmetz was a hunchback dwarf only four foot three who also suffered hip dysphasia. Now what was so influential about this demonstration was not just that artificial lightning was amazing and it is a good idea to test arrestors but that it caused a reunion between Edison and GE, a reunion that GE used to promote themselves. These hereditary problems perpetuated themselves through three generations of males in his family. Not much taller than the children who ran about his laboratory and greenhouse, Steinmetz entertained them with stories of dragons and goblins, which he illustrated with fireworks he summoned from various mixtures of sodium and hydrogen in pails of water. In spite of his love for children and family life, Steinmetz remained unmarried, to prevent his spinal deformity from being passed to any offspring. [14] Now, of course, every tech company has such departments. In the fall of 1923, Steinmetz and his family traveled west by train, stopping to see the Grand Canyon, Yosemite and the actor Douglas Fairbanks in Hollywood. Charles Proteus Steinmetz, orig.
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