It has been said that a successful corporation is not only a “maker of money but a maker of men.” It is true that opportunity calls forth latent powers and stimulates the energy and ambition of the individual, but it is equally true that the individual must have in him those inherent qualities which make for success, and then the combination of opportunity and industry will bring its results. This has been manifested in the career of George C. Schmitz, president and manager of the Arnold Electric Company, which in a period of twelve years has developed its interests into one of the important industries of Racine.
Mr. Schmitz is a native of Racine, born November 7, 1878, his parents being Nicholas and Catherine (Arnold) Schmitz. The father, who was born in the year 1824, in Germany, arrived in Racine in 1850 and here followed the wagon-maker’s trade which he had previously learned in his native land. For a considerable period he was connected with the Mitchell Wagon Company and afterward with the Winnship Manufacturing Company, but he is now living retired at the very venerable age of ninety-two years. It was in February, 1861, that he wedded Catherine Arnold, who has reached the age of seventy-eight years. She, too, was born in Germany, and about 1848 came to the United States with her parents, the family home being established in Milwaukee.
Entering public school at the usual age George C. Schmitz passed through consecutive grades until he had entered and spent one year in the high school. He started in business life as a manufacturer’s agent and entered into business on his own account in 1904, when he with others organized the United States Standard Electrical Works, manufacturing all kinds of motor devices and having today one of the large and important manufacturing plants of the city, has proved adequate to the situation and the opportunity, his ability enabling him to squarely face the former and utilize the latter, and each forward step he has taken in his business career has brought him a broader outlook.
Mr. Schmitz is a valued member of the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks and also a popular representative of the Country Club of Racine and in this city, where his entire life has been passed, he has a most extensive and favorable acquaintance.