Louis F. Frederick, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of Louis F. Frederick

LOUIS F. FREDERICK - While not old as years go, Mr. Frederick might be termed a veteran manufacturer, as his service in the production field has extended over a number of years. He was born in Wilmington, Delaware, on December 12, 1886, the son of George and Sarah Ellen (Foster) Frederick, the former a native of New Orleans and the latter of Salem, New Hampshire. George Frederick was for many years associated with the Pennsylvania Railraod Company, and served as one of the first instructors employed to teach the use of air brakes. He was in intimate touch with the working of this safety device, having cooperated with the Westinghouse Air Brake Company in the practical application of its brake. He was a man of varied experience, having run away from home at the age of thirteen years to join the United State Navy for service in the Civil war. His apparent youth attracted the attention of Admiral Farragut when he was inspected the ship, who stopped and patted him on the shoulder, remarking to the captain, "You have some big men on board." He passed away in 1920 at the age of sixty-nine, and was buried in Riverview Cemetery, Wilmington, Delaware. To his marriage were born two children: Louis, and Edith G., a tacher in the public schools of Wilmington, Delaware.

Louis Frederick attended the public schools of Wilmington, graduated in mechanical arts in 1907, and electrical engineering in 1910, from Drexel Institute of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and took post-graduate work at Carnegie Technical School of Pittsburgh. He spent three years as instructor of physics at the Westinghouse Companyís Technical School for employes. During his college days at Drexel Institute he spent one year with the Pennsylvania Railroad Company as a special apprentice in the shops. On completion of this course he was employed by the Westinghouse Company as an apprentice in their works management course; he was then appointed process engineer in charge of all manufacturing process by the same concern. Seeing the value of bakelite for electrical and mechanical application, he made extensive experimentation and was placed in charge of all testing and experimentation work with laminated bakelite, and even applied it to propellers of airships which were used during the war. Another successful determination for bakelite was as canvass gears in the automobile and industrial fields.

In recognition of his achievements, in 1919 he was selected as assitant president of the Imperial Electric Company of Akron, Ohio; and it was while thus serving that he became acquainted with the executives of the Chicago Mica Company. Confronted with the necessity of reducing manufacturing costs, they asked him to take charge of their plant and to install such machinery as would bring about that end; his success in this was very pronounced. Many of the devices used in the line of business in which he is engaged were invented by Mr. Frederick, he having secured to date thirty-eight patents - including foreign rights - and having fifteen patents still pending. The Fibroc Insulation Company, of which he is the head, was incorporated in 1920 with the following officers: L. F. Frederick, president; A. W. Pickford, vice president; and John F. Griffin, secretary-treasurer. This concern and the Chicago Mica Company are inter-related and together occupy six acres of ground, with building comprising 37,000 square feet of floor space. Sales offices are maintained in the principal cities of this country, and the company enjoys a splendid export trade to Europe and the Orient.

Mr. Frederick was married to Grace, daughter of Charles G. and Kathryn Clayland, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Mrs. Frederick is a vocalist of attainment and taught in the schools of Pittsburgh; for several years she was engaged in concert work, and was a soloist in the Presbyterian Church of Pittsburgh. To them were born two children: Virginia Clayland, and Sarah Kathryn.

A war service of Mr. Frederick was in the supervising of process work in the manufacture of shells, grenade, and airplane propellors with the Westinghouse Company.

He is a member of the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, American Engineering Standards Committee, Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce, Elks, and Masons. Another industrial achievement is as factory manager of the Chicago Mica Company, of which he is a stockholder and director.

Source: Cannon, Thomas H., H. H. Loring, and Charles J. Robb. 1927. History of the Lake and Calumet Region of Indiana Embracing the Counties of Lake, Porter and Laporte. Volume II. Indianapolis, Indiana: Historians' Association. 827 p.
Page(s) in Source: 108-109

This biography has been transcribed exactly as it was originally published in the source. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of biographies appearing on this website.

Biography transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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