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Charles Paine

Civil Engineer

Centurion, 1891–1906

Born 25 April 1830 in Haverhill, New Hampshire

Died 4 July 1906 in Tenafly, New Jersey

Buried Brookside Cemetery, Englewood, New Jersey

Proposed by Albert Fink, Octave Chanute, and Robert Collyer

Elected 2 May 1891 at age sixty-one

Century Memorial

Charles Paine was a man of singularly wide and varied experience in the building and in the administration of railways in the United States. He combined with learning and skill in his profession, and with marked executive ability, the capacity of lucid exposition, the aims of a thorough student, refined aesthetic tastes, moral worth, and a gift for making warm friends. He began his career as engineer at the age of fifteen, as rod-man on a Vermont railroad under the control of one of his uncles. After various work in Canada, he became in 1855, at the age of twenty-five, chief engineer of a railroad in Wisconsin. For twenty-three years he served with the Michigan Southern and Northern Indiana Railroad, and as Chief Engineer and General Superintendent of the Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railroad. He was general manager of the New York, West Shore, and Buffalo Railroad during the period of its construction. After service in the New York, Pennsylvania, and Ohio, and as Vice-President of the Erie, he became general manager in the Philadelphia Company in Pittsburg, engaged in developing the gas interests of that region. In the later years of his life he was the general manager of the Panama Railroad. He was President of the American Society of Civil Engineers in 1883. In the Railroad Gazette, on which Mr. Paine was a frequent and valued collaborator, it is written of him: “His monument is a correct and blameless life in positions of great responsibility, and the men he has encouraged, advised, and trained in uprightness and thoroughness. One officer said a short time ago: ‘The country is full of Paine’s men, and they are the best railroad officers we have.’”

Edward Cary
1907 Century Association Yearbook