Make your own free website on Tripod.com

ImmFamous
     Immigrants Hall of Fame

Home  Name  Field  Country   Archives   Fun   Guests   Email

Hallway  S

             Sidebar

Eero Saarinen (1910-1961)
     Architect who gained fame for his imaginative, varied designs. Born in Finland. His works ranged from rectangular steel and glass (General Motors Technical Center near Detroit) to flowing masses of reinforced concrete (TWA Terminal at Kennedy Airport in New York City). He and his father, Eliel, himself a distinguished architect, settled in the U.S. in 1923. Saarinen gained recognition in 1948 when his design of the Gateway Arch for St. Louis won first prize in a national competition. Among his other works are the MIT Auditorium, Dulles International Airport, and the CBS Building in New York City.

Albert B. Sabin (1906-1993)
     Physician and medical researcher who developed the first oral live-virus polio vaccine. He spent nearly 25 years studying poliomyelitis. Born in Bialystok, Russia (now Poland). Sabin came to the U.S. in 1921. Became a citizen in 1930. He did research at the Rockefeller Institute of Medical Research in New York City, among other places. Sabin also discovered B virus and developed vaccines against the viruses that cause dengue fever and Japanese encephalitis.

Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907)
     Considered the greatest American sculptor of the 19th century. Saint-Gaudens combined idealism with a realistic portrayal of his subjects. One of his most famous works is his statue of Abraham Lincoln in Lincoln Park, Chicago. Born in Dublin, Ireland, and brought to the U.S. as an infant. He began working at 13 when he took a job for a cameo cutter. Among his major public monuments are "Admiral Farragut" in Madison Square Garden, New York City; and the "Puritan" in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Edward Sapir (1884-1939)
    
Anthropologist and linguist. He made pioneering studies on North American Indians languages and on the relationship between culture and personality. Born in Germany and brought to the United States as a boy. Sapir taught at Columbia and Yale universities. His books include "Time Perspective in the Aboriginal American Culture," and "Language: An Introduction to the Study of Speech."

Arnold Schoenberg (1874-1951)
    
Composer and music teacher who greatly influenced 20th century avant-garde music. He moved beyond the traditional tonal system that dominated Western music for 300 years and developed atonality (a tonal system not based on a key) and the 12-tone technique (a method of composing with the 12 tones of the chromatic scale). In traditional tonality, 7 of the 12 tones within an octave are chosen to form a key and diatonic scale. Schoenberg replaced this by using all 12 tones equally, none being related to a central note.Born in Vienna, Austria. He studied violin as a child but had little formal instruction in music theory and composition. After Schoenberg came to the U.S. in 1933, he changed the spelling of his name from Schonberg to Schoenberg. He became a U.S. citizen in 1941. He taught at UCLA. Among his major compositions are "Pierrot Lunaire," "Serenade," and "Ode to Napoleon."

Carl Schurz (1829-1906)
    
Reformer, public official, and journalist. He is regarded as one of the great American statesmen of foreign birth. During an age when corruption was commonplace, Schurz was an influential champion of social and political reform. Born in Liblar, Germany. While at the University of Bonn, he took part in the unsuccessful Revolution of 1848 and was forced to flee Germany. He came to the U.S. in 1852, settling in Watertown, Wisconsin. Schurz soon became active as an opponent of slavery and joined the newly organized Republican Party. In 1860, he campaigned extensively for Abraham Lincoln, who appointed him minister to Spain. After two years as minister, Schurz resigned his post to become a brigadier general in the Union Army. He commanded German-American troops at Second Bull Run, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg. After the war, Schurz became a journalist. In 1868 he was elected to the U.S. Senate from Missouri. There he led the anti-Grant Republicans and helped organize the Liberal Republican party. As Secretary of the Interior under President Hayes, Schurz initiated reforms in the treatment of Indians. Most of his later years were spent lecturing and writing for the New York Evening Post and Harper’s Weekly.

Anna Howard Shaw (1847-1919)
    
Reformer, physician, and preacher. As president of the National Woman Suffrage Association (1904-1915), she did much toward obtaining the vote for women. Born in England and brought to the U.S. when she was four. In 1886 she received her degree of doctor of medicine from Boston University. Shaw was the first woman ordained in the Protestant Methodist Church (1880). During World War I she was chair of the women’s division of the Council of National Defense, and in 1919 she was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal.

Siamese Twins (1811-1874)
    
This term - referring to twins joined together at birth -- was derived from Eng and Chang (Bunker), who were born in Thailand (formerly Siam). They were joined at the chest by a band of flesh four inches long and eight inches in circumference. Surgeons feared to cut the band because of the heavy veins running back and forth between the twins’ livers. The Siamese Twins, as they became known, were brought to the U.S. by Robert Hunter in 1829 when the boys were 18. They grew to be about 5 feet 2 inches in height. Since they faced in the same direction, they could walk, run, swim. They were exhibited throughout the United States and later in Europe. The twins were married in 1843 to sisters, Sarah and Adelaide Yates. The four of them did everything together. Chang had ten children, and Eng had nine children. The original Siamese Twins died within three hours of each other.

Franz Sigel (1824-1902)
    
Army officer. Born in Germany and came to the U.S. to escape arrest as a revolutionist. At the outbreak of the Civil War he organized an infantry regiment for the Union Army. He won distinction in the Missouri campaign of 1861, and was credited with the Union victory at Pea Ridge. He later fought in the second battle of Bull Run and in the Shenandoah campaigns. Sigel retired as a major general.

Igor Ivan Sikorsky (1885-1972)
    
Aviation engineer. Born in Kiev, Russia. In 1913 he built and flew the first multi-engine airplane. Came to the U.S. in 1919. Became a citizen in 1928. Sikorsky organized a plane-manufacturing company that later merged with United Aircraft Corporation. He designed the first 40-passenger transoceanic Clipper plane. Several types of helicopters used in World War II and the Korean War were developed by him.

   James Smithson (1765-1829)
     A scientist who was the founder of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. He never set foot in the United States, but he is buried here -- a posthumous immigrant.
     He was born in France, the son of Hugh Smithson, the first duke of Northumberland. He was brought to England as a boy and graduated from Oxford University in 1776, where he made a brilliant record in chemistry and mineralogy. In 1787 he was made a fellow of the royal Society. Zinc carbonate was named smitsonite in honor of his work in the chemistry of calamines. He inherited his fortune upon his mother's death in 1800.
     He was buried in Genoa, Italy, until 1904, when his body was removed to Washington, D.C. Smithson left his fortune to his nephew with the provision that if the nephew died without children the money (a bequest of $500,000) would be given to the United States to establish an institution for the advancement of learning. That institution was created by Congress in 1846 as an "establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge." Over the years, funds have been contributed both by individuals and the government. The Smithsonian buildings are on The Mall in Washington, D.C. The Institution conducts scientific research and explorations in many fields, has museum and art gallery exhibits, and publishes numerous papers and reports of its activities. Although the general public associates the museums with the Smithsonian Institution, not many are aware that the National Zoological Park and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts are part of the Smithsonian Institution.

Karsten Solheim  (1911-2000)
     The immigrant son of a shoemaker helped to revolutionize the game of golf with a golf club that became an international best-seller. He called the club PING for the sound it made when it connected with the ball. The Karsten Manufacturing Co. made a fortune selling those clubs for an immigrant born in Bergen, Norway on September 15, 1911.
 


George Soros (1930 -    )
    
Entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist. He is chairman of the Soros Fund Management, a private investment management firm that serves as principal investment advisor to the Quantum Group of Funds. Born in Budapest, Hungary. Soros emigrated to England, where he graduated from the London School of Economics, and in 1956 to the United States, where he began to accumulate a large fortune through the investment fund he founded and managed. Quantum Fund N.V., the oldest and largest fund within the Quantum Group, is generally recognized as having the best performance record of any investment fund in the world in its 28-year history.
     Soros funds a network of foundations that operate in 31 countries throughout Central and Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union and Central Asia, as well as South Africa, Haiti, Guatemala, and the United States. These foundations are dedicated to building and maintaining the infrastructure and institutions of an open society. Soros also has founded other major institutions, such as the Central European University and the International Science Foundation. In 1996, the foundations in the network spent about $362 million.
     He is the author of several books, including "The Alchemy of Finance," and "Soros on Soros: Staying Ahead of the Curve."

Sammy Sosa (1968-    )
     Born in San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic -- a country with a passion for baseball. Sosa sold oranges and shined shoes as a boy, when not playing baseball in dirt lots with a ball made out of rolled socks. He signed a pro-baseball contract when he was 16. He now plays for the Chicago Cubs. In 1998 he set several records. He's the only player in the Cubs' 122-year history to have hit 30 homers and stolen 30 bases. (Sosa has done it twice.) He broke the record for most home runs in a month (20). He also shattered Roger Maris' 61-home run mark for a single season. Sosa hit 66 dingers. And as fate would have it, Mark McGwire hit 70 that same year.
     Tens of thousands greeted him when he visited the Dominican Republic after the baseball season ended. Many of the signs along the street said, "Bienvenido a tu pais, Sammy." The President of the Dominican Republic named Sosa "Roving Ambassador to the Glory of Sport" and awarded him the nation's highest honor, The Grand Cross of the Order of Duarte. A national holiday was declared.

Henry Stanley (1841-1904)
     Newspaper correspondent and explorer of Africa. The New York Herald sent Stanley to find Dr. David Livingston, the British missionary explorer of Africa. The difficult but successful search for Dr. Livingston made Stanley famous. Stanley’s four expeditions to Africa during 1871-1890 helped fill in many of the gaps in African geography.
     Stanley was born John Rowlands, near Denbigh, Wales, and as a child was sent to a home for the poor. At 16 he sailed as a cabin boy to New Orleans, where he was adopted by a wealthy merchant who gave him his name. At the beginning of the American Civil War, Stanley enlisted in the Confederate Army. He was soon taken prisoner, then released, and later entered the Union Navy. After the war, Stanley turned to journalism.
     For the New York Herald, Stanley set out from Zanzibar in March 1871, with 92 men to find Livingston. On November 10 the two explorers met at Ujiji on Lake Tanganyika. Stanley later wrote "How I Found Livingston," an immediate success.

Charles Proteus Steinmetz (1865-1923)
     Electrical engineer and mathematician. Born in Breslau, Germany. A cripple all his life. While a student, Steinmetz was forced to leave Germany because of his socialist activities. Came to the U.S. in 1889. Steinmetz worked for the General Electric Company, for whom he conducted many important electrical experiments. Through his investigations of magnetism, he discovered the law of hysteresis, a principle of great value to manufacturers of motors, generators, and other types of electrical apparatus. He also introduced a method, still in use, for making alternating current calculations. In 1921, he made artificial lightning in his laboratory.

Henry William Stiegel (1729-1785)
     Iron and glass manufacturer. Born in Germany and in 1750 immigrated to Philadelphia, where he gained fame and wealth as an ironmaster. He founded Manheim, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Stiegel imported skilled glassmakers, and produced a thin, brilliant glassware that is a collector’s item today. He was known as "Baron" because of his extravagant manner of living. He became bankrupt during the American Revolutionary War and died in poverty.

Leopold Stokowski (1882 - )
     Orchestra conductor. Born in London, England, of a Polish father and Irish mother. In 1909 he became conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. From 1912 to 1936, he maintained a brilliant standard as conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra. He became U.S. citizen in 1915. Stokowski performed in Walt Disney’s Fantasia and other mother pictures.

Nathan Straus (1848-1931)
     Merchant and philanthropist. Born in Rhenish Bavaria, Germany, the son of Lazaraus and Sara Straus. His family, including his brothers Isidor and Oscar, came to the U.S. in 1854 and organized L. Straus and Sons in 1866. Nathan joined Isidor in the purchase of R.H. Macy & Company in 1896. Nathan Straus was prominent in Jewish affairs and as a Zionist leader. His extensive charities were directed toward improving health and education. One project made pasteurized milk available to the poor of New York City. His brother Oscar was U.S. Ambassador to Turkey and U.S. Secretary of Commerce and Labor under President Theodore Roosevelt.

Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971)
     Composer and conductor. He ranks among the most significant of 20th century composers for developing the resources, forms, and treatment of musical material. Born near St. Petersburg, Russia. His youthful compositions attracted ballet producers, who commissioned him to write "The Firebird," "Petrouchka," and "The Rite of Spring." These works became landmarks in the concert halls. Stravinsky left Russia in 1910 and lived for a time in Rome and Switzerland. After World War I he made his home in Paris and became a French citizen. In 1939, he made the U.S. his permanent home, become a citizen in 1945. To celebrate his citizenship, he wrote "Scenes de Ballet." Among his later musical compositions are "Noah and the Floor" and "Elegy for J.F.K."

Thomas Sully (1783-1872)
     Prolific painter. Born in England and as a child was brought to South Carolina. In 1809 he became a U.S. citizen. Sully’s work has been described as lacking imagination and yet his name endures. He was commissioned to paint a portrait of Queen Victoria. He also pained "Washington Crossing the Delaware."

John Augustus Sutter (1803-1880)
     A pioneer in California. Gold was discovered on his land. Born in Kandern, Baden, Germany. He later became a Swiss citizen and served in the Swiss army. He came to St. Louis in 1834 and eventually made his way to California (which at that time was part of Mexico). In 1839 Sutter founded Nueva Helvetia, which later became Sacramento. Known as "General" Sutter, he was made a Mexican citizen in 1841 and ruled his vast grants of land in California with almost complete independence. When gold was discovered at Sutter’s Mill on his estate in 1848, squatters settled on his land and he lost everything. After the Mexican-American War, the California Legislature granted Sutter a pension. Sutter moved to Lititz, Pennsylvania, in 1871 and unsuccessfully petitioned Congress for relief.

George Szell (1897-1970)
     Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera and of the Cleveland Orchestra. Born in Budapest, Hungary. He was known for his interpretations of Mozart and Beethoven and for the tonal balance of his orchestra. His performances were marked by a precise, subdued style of conducting..

 

 

 





  The stainless-steel Gateway
Arch designed by Aeero Saarinen rises 630 feet above the St. Louis riverfront as symbol of the city's role as the gateway to the West.