International Correspondence School - Eureka, Ca
Humboldt County, CA Biographies





INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENCE SCHOOL. - Established in Eureka during 1901, the International Correspondence School has developed rapidly under the supervision of Robert Lewis Werner, who in 1908 became general manager of the district comprising Humboldt and Del Norte counties in California and Curry and Coos counties in Oregon, with one sub agent in Marshfield, Ore., the main office being in Eureka, Cal. In the years of his supervision he has totaled about twelve hundred new students, which is about an average of fifteen per month or one hundred and eighty a year. The agricultural courses are the ones usually preferred, although there have been a goodly number of students in the drafting, surveying, and civil and electrical engineering courses. Among local men who have taken the course are Robert L. Thomas, ex city engineer of Eureka and deputy county surveyor of Humboldt county; Frank Kelly, chief engineer of the Pacific Lumber Company at Scotia; Fred Newman, deputy county surveyor; John Harnett, superintendent of the Western States Gas and Electric Light Company at Eureka; and G. A. Strand, city engineer of Eureka; all these being men who are a credit to the county and to the institution in which they prosecuted their studies by correspondence. The manager assists the students in getting a start with their studies and gives them such help as they may need, so that they are not hampered in the course by any lack of understanding of difficulties, and undoubtedly much of the success of the work may be attributed to this important feature. One of the chief instruments in bringing about the success and great interest in the work of the International Correspondence School was the organization of the Humboldt County Associated I. C. S.' student body by Mr. Werner. The meetings and associations of this body are an inspiration to students who have become lax and are the means of renewing their interest and spurring them on to ever greater effort in completing their courses.

When Mr. Werner came to Humboldt county in July, 1905, it was for the purpose of acting as agent at Eureka for the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, which previously he had represented for two years at Missoula, Mont., and later at San Leandro, Alameda county, Cal. His early life had been spent in Wisconsin, where he was born in Manitowoc county, July 29, 1881, and where he had received an excellent education, later teaching school until he took up life insurance work. Education and temperament qualify him for the duties of manager with the Scranton school, and he is succeeding in a work that is worthy of his greatest energies and highest talents.

The International Correspondence School through its two hundred and thirty five courses and through its agencies in every part of the world has done more to prepare people for success than any other single agency or institution. The history of the students is a history of success. The leaders of the movement at Scranton, Pa., are receiving grateful letters from every part of the world, telling how their training enabled men in trades and professions to do superior work; or how young men without employment were trained to get a start; and how better salaries have resulted from the special studies. Indeed the institution carries specialization further than any other school in existence. The students are not required to study trades or courses in which they are not interested, but they are encouraged to specialize their energies upon the one occupation in hand. The incomparable text books explain every intricate or involved problem. The school of architecture trains men for that enduring and useful occupation, with courses in the kindred subjects of structural engineering, structural drafting and concrete engineering, also courses for building contractors, building foremen and masons. Essentially modern is the school of arts and crafts, with its technical training in illustrating and designing, bookcover designs, carpet designs, linoleum and wall paper designs, perspective and architectural drawing and kindred subjects. The school of civil engineering develops splendid technical instruction not alone in that specialty, but is invaluable to surveyors, topographers, draftsmen, bridge engineers, railroad engineers, road masters, municipal or city engineers, designers of water works, sewerage systems and hydraulic power plants. In recent years the school of electrical engineering has attracted many students, for it embraces a complete electrical course and is invaluable in this age of dynamos, electric lighting and wiring, electric railways and electric traction. Nor is mechanical engineering less important in this era of mechanical development and this school instructs in every department of shop practice, toolmaking, foundrywork, blacksmithing, etc. Courses in refrigeration and gas engines are most important to young men desiring to specialize in such work. There is also a course to instruct chauffeurs in the running and repairs of automobiles and many garage managers have been enrolled in this department. Mechanical drawing instructs in the draftsman's branch of the mechanical field, where opportunity for employment is excellent and salaries for the proficient quite large. The schools of steam engineering, mines, navigation, commerce, stenography, bookkeeping, banking, pedagogy, commercial English, manufacture of monuments, sheet metal work and boiler making, civil service, plumbing, heating and ventilation, chemistry, textiles, advertising, salesmanship, languages, commercial law, locomotive running and many others, chief among which is the school of agriculture with all of its subsidiary courses, furnish an opportunity for specialization unequalled in any part of the world or in any previous era of the world's history, giving to the ambitious but uneducated young man a chance to reach a position high in the world of thought and activity, with the financial and social standing such advancement renders possible.

From:
History of Humboldt County, California
With a Biographical Sketches
History by Leigh H. Irving
Historic Record Company
Los Angeles, California 1915


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