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New Biography "Charles Proteus Steinmetz" Presents the Amazing Life of a Forgotten Genius and Eccentric

New biography "Charles Proteus Steinmetz: The Electrical Wizard of Schenectady" profiles the life and work of Charles Proteus Steinmetz (1865-1923), the scientist who made long-range AC power transmission possible. Steinmetz was just four feet tall, a celebrated eccentric, and revered in his lifetime as one of America's greatest scientists. The first biography of Steinmetz in years, "Charles Proteus Steinmetz" brings this great man's life and achievements to a new generation.

New Biography
Fresno, CA, September 26, 2018 --( Edison and Tesla get all the glory, but perhaps the greatest electrical wizard of them all was Charles Proteus Steinmetz (1865-1923). Only four feet tall, a hunchback, a convinced socialist and an eccentric personality, Steinmetz pioneered modern power transmission technology. Revered as a genius in his lifetime, Steinmetz has been largely forgotten.

This great but neglected scientist receives his first full biography in many years in the new book “Charles Proteus Steinmetz: The Electrical Wizard of Schenectady” (Quill Driver Books, October 1, 2018) by Robert W. Bly.

While Steinmetz himself has sunk into obscurity, his work continues to benefit all humanity, as all of us use the fruit of his labors every day. Steinmetz’s groundbreaking theoretical and engineering work, starting in the 1890s, made long-range transmission of AC electricity possible, laying the foundations of today’s power grid and all the electrical devices that depend on a reliable source of electricity.

“Charles Proteus Steinmetz” gives a full appreciation of both the scientific achievements and remarkable personal life of this extraordinary man. Writing in plain, straightforward language, Robert Bly gives a lucid, reader-friendly explanation of the science of electricity and Steinmetz’s role in developing electrical technology.

Hired by General Electric in 1893, Steinmetz was at the center of the effort to deliver electric power throughout the United States, and Steinmetz was instrumental in creating electrical standards that are still in effect today.

The rivalry between Edison’s advocacy for a direct current electrical standard and Tesla’s championing of alternating current is well known. But, as “Charles Proteus Steinmetz” makes clear, it was Steinmetz who made AC power transmission practical and effective.

The most gifted pure scientist among the early electrical pioneers, Steinmetz created a theoretical and mathematical framework for designing electrical systems, transforming electrical engineering from guesswork to a scalable technology.

More than just a scientist and engineer, Steinmetz was also one of the most colorful characters in American life. Standing just four feet tall with a pronounced spine curvature, Steinmetz was as well known for his unconventional political opinions, his fierce advocacy for social progress and education, his unusual home life and his private menagerie as for his technical achievements.

A socialist and a political exile from Imperial Germany, Steinmetz overcame severe physical disabilities and poverty to become one of the most influential scientific leaders of the United States.

Steinmetz refused to marry or have children to avoid passing on his hereditary disabilities, but he created a family for himself by adopting his lab assistant and being a grandfather to his adoptive son’s children.

“Charles Proteus Steinmetz” also covers Steinmetz’s numerous interests and accomplishments beyond his work at General Electric: his significant contributions to pure science; his inventions and patents; his interests in education, politics and the development of society; and his side careers as a university professor, community leader and politician.

An engrossing blend of biography and popular science writing, “Charles Proteus Steinmetz” brings the life, passions and achievements of a great man to a new generation.

More about Robert W. Bly:
Robert W. Bly is the author of over 95 books on science, technology, business, marketing, copywriting, science fiction, and popular culture. Bly holds a BS in chemical engineering from the University of Rochester and is a member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. Before becoming a freelance writer, he was a technical writer for Westinghouse. He has written technical materials on electricity and electronics for such companies as GE Semiconductor, Schneider Electrical, and Leviton. In addition to his book-length works, Bly’s articles have appeared in Science Books & Films, Computer Decisions, City Paper, The Record, Cosmopolitan, Writer’s Digest, Chemical Engineering, and many other magazines and newspapers. He has a science website——and his writing website is

Book Details:
Title: Charles Proteus Steinmetz: The Electrical Wizard of Schenectady
Author: Robert W. Bly
Publisher: Quill Driver Books, an imprint of Linden Publishing
Publication Date: October 1, 2018
Price: $16.95 US
Category: Biography/ Science & Technology
ISBN 978-1-61035-326-7
6" x 9" trade paperback, 170 pages, illustrations, photographs, bibliography, index. Also available in e-book formats.

Available from bookstores, online booksellers and Quill Driver Books (1-800-345-4447,
Contact Information
Linden Publishing
Jaguar Bennett

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