Early Leadership Series 1890-1950

NAIT is interested in preserving the history of our discipline. This early leadership series covering Manual Arts, Manual Training, Industrial Education, and Industrial Arts identifies those individuals who significantly impacted the early development of Industrial Arts and later the discipline of Industrial Technology. The author of the information in this early leadership series is unknown and therefore the information may be incomplete. If you have any additional information about the individuals listed please let us know. If you are interested in serving on the NAIT Historical Committee please contact Al Rudisill.


William Thomas Bawden

Born: Oberlin, Ohio on November 6, 1875; Died April 27, 1960; AB Denison, 1896; Mechanics Instructor, Rochester, NY 1898; BS Columbia, 1903; PhD, 1914; Instructor of math, history, and French at Cedar Valley Seminary in Osage, IA from 1896-97; Shops NY State Reformatory in 1898; Manual Training in public schools of Buffalo, NY from 1898 to 1902; Head of Department at Illinois State Normal University from 1903-1910; Assistant Dean of College of Engineering at Illinois from 1910 to 1912; Specialist of Industrial Education from 1914 to 1923; Assistant Superintendent in Tulsa, OK; Managing Editor of "Industrial Education Magazine", Member of Editorial Staff for "Industrial Education Magazine", 1902 to 1928; Member of Phi Delta Kappa and Phi Beta Kappa.


Charles Alpheus Bennett

Born: Holden, MA on March 18, 1864; Died June 22, 1942; BS Worcester Polytechnic Institute; Organized first manual training school in 1888; Head of the Department of Manual Arts, Columnbia University 1891; Head of the Department of Manual Arts, Bradley Institute 1897; Founder of the "Industrial Education Magazine" 1899; Founder of the Manual Arts Press 1903; Author of several textbooks pertaining to Industrial Arts; In 1909 helped in the organization of the Mississippi Valley Manual Arts Conference; Known as the Dean of Manual Arts in America.


Frederick Gordon Bonser

Born: Pana, IL on June 14, 1875; Died June 8, 1931; Two year diploma - 1897,BS - 1901, and MS, 1902 from University of Illinois; Phd degree from Columbia University in 1906; Public schools, IL, and Wash Col teacher State Normal School, Cheney Wash, State Teachers College, Columbia University, NY; His philosophy of education was a generation ahead of his time. Although not a shop teacher he saw the need for Industrial Arts in lower grades; Influential in making the name change to Industrial Arts; Wrote and published many magazine and book articles.


Clyde A. Bowman

Born: Prescott, WI on July 18, 1887; Two year diploma State Teachers College, River Falls, WI in 1907; Industrial Arts Diploma from Stout Institute in 1909; BS degree from Columbia University in 1915; MS degree from University of Wisconsin in 1927; Teacher of public schools El Paso; Director of Manual Training at Stillwater, MN; Director of Manual Arts at State Teachers College, Stephens Point, WI in 1911; Granted Dean Emeritus status from Stout University in 1953; Life member of the Americal Vocational Association; Memberof Phi Delta Kappa, Epsilon Pi Tau, Iota Lambda Sigma, Mu Sigma Pi, and Mississippi Valley Industrial Education Conference.


Emanuel Eric Ericson

Born: Oregrund, Sweden on August 18, 1888; Died: October 28, 1959; Came to America in 1906; Two year degree from Stout Institute; Director of Manual Arts, State Normal School, Ada, OK; BS Stout Institute 1919; Editor of the "Manual Training Magazine" 1921; Attended Bradley Polytecnic Institute, University of Chicago, and the University of California; MA from the University of Southern California in 1932; Author of several books, the best know of which is "Teaching The Industrial Arts."


John Frank Friese

Born: St. Cloud, MN on November 2, 1894; Studied at Bradley Polytechnic Institute in 1914; BS Bradley Polytechnic Institute in 1925; MS degree University of Wisconsin in 1930; Student of Charles Bennett; Teacher of Stanstead Academy and College in Quebec; Bonners Ferry, ID in 1916; St. Cloud from 1919 to 1927 where he was Diretor of Industrial Education, Adult Education, and Guidance; Assistant Professor of Industrial Arts at University of Wisconsin from 1927 to 1932; Professor of Industrial Arts for 28 years at Pennsylvania State University; Honorary Member in NAITTE in 1966; Author and Co-Author of eight books; Listed in Who's Who in American Education.


Verne Charles Fryklund

Born: Printice, WI on January 4, 1886; Two year diploma from Stout Institute in 1916; BA Colorado College of Education in 1923; MA from University of Missouri in 1927; Phd from University of Minnesota in 1933; Public Schools of Detroit, Houston, Denver, and Greeley, Colorado from 1916 to 1922; College teacher at Kearney, Nebraska, University of Minnesota, and Wayne University from 1922 to 1941; Elected second President of NAITE in 1940; President of Stout State College from 1945-1961; Second Life Chairman of the Mississippi Valley Industrial Arts Conference and served in that position from 1941 to 1961; Author or Co-Author of 33 books and 70 magazine articles or reviews. Traveled in more than 55 countries.


Ira Samuel Griffith

Born: Hollon, Kansas on July 24, 1874; Died on April 29, 1924; AB degree from Eureka College in Illinois in 1896; Studied Manual Arts under Charles Bennett; Authored a series of text books, the most memorable being "Essentials of Woodwork"; Taught math at Eureka College from 1900 to 1903; Manual Training in public schools in Illinois from 1903 to 1912; Head of Department of Industrial Education at University of Missouri from 1913 to 1919; Member of Manual Arts Conference in 1919; Head of the Department of Industrial Education at the University of Illinois from 1920 to 1924; Head of the Department at the University of Wisconsin in 1923.


Lorenzo Dow Harvey

Born: Dearfield, NH on November 23, 1848; Died June 1, 1922; BS Milton College, Wisconsin; Faculty of State Normal School, Oshkosh, Wisonsin; President of State Normal School in Milwaukee, 1892; State Superintendent of Schools in Wisconsin, 1898; President of Wisconsin State Teachers Association, 1890-1891; President of NEA, 1908-1909; President of Stout Institute, 1903; Known for contribution to the professional preparation of teachers of Industrial Arts and Homemaking.


H. H. London

Born: Bonhan, Texas on October 12, 1900; BS North Texas State University, 1924; MA University of Missouri, 1929; PhD Ohio State University, 1934; Public Schools of Muskogee, Okalhoma, 1922; College teacher Arlington (Texas) State College, West Texas State University, North Texas State University, Ohio State University, South Georgia State College, Mississippi State University, and University of Missouri; At University of Missouri (1938-1971) advised over 200 Doctorate degrees and 400 Masters in Industrial Education; Wrote over 45 articles on Industrial Education; Chairman of the Mississippi Valley Conference 1961-1970; President of NAITE 1953-1957 and of the American Vocational Association from 1958-59; Two special honors - Educational Exhibitors Association Hall of Fame and the Distinguished Service Aware of the American Vocational Association.


Arthur Beverly Mays

Born: Roundrock, Texas in 1887; Died on July 12, 1966; BS and MA George Peabody College; Teacher of public schools at Marlin, Dallas, and Fort Worth, college teacher at Sam Houston Institute and the University of Illinois, 1909-1922; Director of Vocational Training program at Camp Travis, San Antonio; Author and Co-author of eleven books, six brochures, and four magazine articles; Vice-President of the American Vocational Association, 1942-1945; Member of the Editorial Board and Research Committee of the American Vocational Association; Listed in The Leaders of America and Who's Who in the Midwest; Received Illinois Vocational Assocation Award for Achievement in 1955; Member of NAITE.


George Edmund Myers

Born: Massillon, Iowa on November 26, 1871; Died January 12, 1961; AB Ottawa University, Ottawa, Kansas 1891; AM University of Chicago, 1901; PhD Clark University, Worcester, MA, 1906; One year post-doctorate at Columbia University; Teacher, Bacone Indian School, Muskoler, Oklahoma, 1896-1899 and Senior High School, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 1901-1905; Principal of McKinley Manual Training High School, Washington D.C., 1906-1911; Second Principal at the State Manual Training Normal School, Pittsburg, Kansas, 1911-1913; Studied vocational schools in Europe in 1913-1914; Supervisor New York City Schools from 1914-1917; Professor of Vocational Education and Guidance at the University of Michigan - held this position until retirement in 1942; Lecturer for Department of Education, University of Washington, Washington D.C.


Charles Allen Prosser

Born: New Albany, Indiana on September 20, 1871; Died: November 26, 1952; BS Albany, Indiana; AM DePauw University; PhD, 1915; LLd in law, University of Louisville; He was a member of four fraternities; The recipient of three honorary degrees; 1910-1912 Assistant Commissioner for Vocational Education, Boston; 1912-1915 Secretary of the NSPIE, New York; 1915-1946 Director of the William Hood Dunwoody Industrial Institute, Minneapolis, Minnesota; 1917-1919 served as the Director of the Federal Board for Vocational Education, Washington D.C. Organized a new division of Vocational Education in Boston.


Charles Russell Richards

Born: Boston, MA on June 30, 1865; Died on February 21, 1936; BS, MIT in 1885; Public Schools New York City 1885-1888; Pratt Institute 1888-1889; Director of Department of Manual Training, Teachers College of New York, 1898-1908; Co-editor of "Manual Training Magazine"; Director of Cooper Union 1908-1923; Founded NSPIE; Following 1914 directed several important state and local surveys of training and industrial arts.


William Elmer Roberts

Born: Cambridge, MA on July 21, 1866; Died August 31, 1950; Due to ill health obtained most of his elementary and high school education from his mother; In 1880 he went to work as a cabinet maker; Diring his period of apprenticeship, attended public evening drawing classes in Boston; In 1887 secured a position as draftsman in Cambridge; In September of 1887, served as instructor in the School of Mechanic Arts organized by Dr. J. D. Runkle; 1888-1889, was a special student in shopwork at Massassachutes Institute of Technology; 1890, offered position as Principal of the West Manual Training School in Cleveland, Ohio; 1893, given charge of all Manual Training in Cleveland.


John Daniel Runkle

Born: Root, New York on October 11, 1822; Died on July 8, 1902; Farm boy attended private school at age 16; BS Lawrence Scientific School of Harvard; Received honorary degree of MS; Founded "Mathematical Monthly"; First Professor of Mathematics at MIT; BS and AM Harvard; PhD Hamilton College, Clinton, New York; LLd Wesleyan University, Middleton, Connecticut; Acting President of MIT from 1868-1870; President of MIT 1870-1878; Wrote "Elements of Plane Analytic Geometric" and "The Manual Element of Education"; Witnessed the Russian system of manual training at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Phildelphia and returned to MIT and recommended its adoption.


Robert Washington Selvidge

Born: Missouri, on August 11, 1872; Died: November 16, 1941; BS, 1908; MA, 1909 Columbia University; Taught at University of Missouri and George Peabody College for Teachers; Officer in NAITT; Belonged to AAAS, ASME, American Academy of Political and Social Science, Phi Delta Kappa, and Pi Tau Sigma; First Vice-President of AVA, and charter member and prime mover of the Mississippi Valley Conference; Author and co-author of several books in the field of Industrial Education; Known also for work in trade and job analysis.


Albert Frederick Siepert

Born: Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin on September 12, 1883; Died on April 30, 1947; Graduated Manual Arts Teachers Course, Bradley Polytech, 1908; Stout Institute, Menomonie, Wisconsin, 1909; BS degree Teachers College, Columbia University; Masters degree University of Chicago, 1927; taught in Iowa Public Schools, 1904-1907; Northwest Missouri State Normal School, 1908-1909; Public Schools in Montclair, NJ from 1909-1913; Professor and Dean of Bradley University Industrial Education Division; Vice-President of Bradley University at time of death; Member of AVA, NEA, Western Arts Association, Illinois Industrial Education Association, The Manual Arts Conference, Phi Delta Kappa, and Phi Gamma Mu. Wrote several articles and books.


Homer John Smith

Born: Livingston, Wisconsin on December 3, 1885; Died on September 16, 1966; Public Schools of South Wayne, Platteville, Waukesha, and Milwaukee Wisconsin from 1905-1919; Two year diploma State Normal, Platteville, 1908; BS University of Wisconsin, 1915; MA and PhD University of Minnesota in 1922 and 1926; Became staff member of University of Minnesota in 1919 and served as Chairman and Professor in the Department of Industrial Education, 1922-1954; Wrote many professional articles and served in the capacity of officer in many professional organizations; Reveived Outstanding Service Award from the AVA in 1953.


Ferdinand Theodore Struck

Born: Hamburg, Germany on March 18, 1886; Died on November 22, 1943; Came to America in July of 1893; BS, University of Oregon, 1911; Stutent Assistant in College of Engineering, University of Oregon, 1910; Statium High School, Tacoma, Washington, 1911-1913; MA Teachers College, Columbia University, 1913; Director of the Vocational School, West Orange, NJ, 1914-1918; Associate Professor at Pennsylvania State College, 1918-1921; PhD, Teachers College, Columbia University, 1920; Author of Several books and bulletins on Vocational Education; Member of many professional Industrial Education organizations.


Fred Campbell Whitcomb

Born: North Vernon, Indiana on November 8, 1870; Died on December 19, 1946; BS Franklin College, Franklin, Indiana, 1900; Industrial Education degree 1904 from Columbia University Teachers College, New York; Director of Industrial Education at Howard University, Washington, D.C.; Professor of Manual Training and Director of Industrial Arts Department for 38 years at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio; Studied abroad; Member of Kappa Delta Pi, Kappa Phi Kappa, Epsilon Pi Tau, and the Manual Arts Conference of the Mississippi Valley.


Calvin Milton Woodward

Born: Fitchburg, Massassachutes on August 25, 1837; Died on January 12, 1914; AB, Harvard University; PhD, from Washington University of St Louis, 1883; LLd, Washington University, 1905; Math teacher and Assistant Principal at Washington University, 1865; Principal of O'Fallen Polytech Institute, 1866 which became part of Washington University, 1868; Served as Dean until 1896; Lectured andf wrote for five year period, 1901; Dean of Washington University, 1910; St Louis Board of Education, 1871-1879, and 1897-1911 (President for three terms); Member of Board of Curators, University of Missouri, 1891-1897 (President from 1894-1897); Author of numerous books and articles about Industrial Education; Referred to as the "Father of Manual Training in the United States".