Charles Proteus Steinmetz
(1865 – 1923)
Charles Proteus Steinmetz was a German-born American electrical engineer. He helped to expand the electrical power industry, launching a new electrical era across the United States. Steinmetz made advancements in electrical generators and circuitry. His writings continue to be an important resource for electrical engineers.
Brain Over Brawn
Steinmetz was born with kyphosis and dwarfism, but that did not hinder his career. His genius caught the eye of fellow electrical scientist Thomas Edison. Steinmetz became a major asset to Edison’s General Electric Company, where his discoveries changed the way engineers thought about circuits and machines and made Steinmetz the most recognized name in electricity for decades.
These portraits were commissioned by Dean Kamen for the SEE Science Center. The artist is Jack Kamen (1920-2008), an American graphic artist and Dean's father. The series was created to inspire children through the stories of scientists and engineers whose work changed the world. While many of the pieces represent men, the duo worked hard to identify female scientists. Had Jack not passed, their goal was to continue to increase representation within the collection. The original artwork is on display at the SEE Science Center in the Jack Kamen Portrait Gallery.