A Clarkson Mosaic - page 33

After William McKinley was shot fatally, Theodore Roosevelt was sworn in as president. The
lowly mosquito was discovered to be the cause of yellow fever. Texas had its first great oil
strike at "Spindletop," producing 75,000 barrels a day. For paychecks of $12 or less per week,
laborers spent 10 hours a day, six days a week at their jobs. N.Y. Stock Exchange trading
exceeded two million shares for the first time. Queen Victoria died at age 82. Members of the
Automobile Club of America paid a $10 fine in New Jersey for exceeding the eight mph speed
limit. Anna Edson Taylor went over Niagara Falls safely in a barrel. The first Nobel prizes
were awarded to Roentgen (Germany) for discovering X-rays, to Sully Prudhomme (France)
for Literature, and for the Peace Prize, to John Dunant (Switzerland) for establishing the Red
Cross in 1864.
Clarkson’s Growth
Cruikshank Stepped Down
Aldrich Became Director
Clarkson’s Motto
Electrical Engineering
Tech Register
Faculty Recruitment
Clarkson's Growth.
After five years, Clarkson had grown to enroll 64 students in engineering
and six in home science. Six B.S. degrees were awarded: five in EE and the first Civil
Engineering degree.
Cruikshank Stepped Down.
Eccentric Director Barton Cruikshank stepped down as head of
the school, and then, it is rumored, faked his own suicide so that his wife could collect the
insurance and live in peace.
Aldrich Became Director.
Cruikshank was succeeded as director of the School by William
Sleeper Aldrich who bought the house on Main Street next to Old Main building that
subsequently became the President's House. Aldrich had been a teacher at West Virginia
University, and came to Clarkson from that position. Even though he gave talks frequently, he
chose not to begin teaching right away at Clarkson, for he was self-conscious about his
hat disability resulted from the noise he was exposed to while serving
aboard the USS Vulcan during the Spanish-American War. His deafness was unique, according
to his youngest daughter, Mary (Mrs. E. M. Jones, Liverpool, N.Y.). He could not hear at all
well in a quiet place, but when surrounded by noise, such as in a noisy engine room of a ship,
he could hear quite well.
He was born in 1863 and graduated from Burlington High School, New Jersey, in 1878
at the age of 15. Commissioned from the Naval Academy with distinction in June 9, 1883, he
graduated again a year later from Stevens Institute with a degree in Mechanical Engineering.
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