W. Creighton Schwan was a scholar, but one with his feet on the ground.
From before serving in World War II till he died at the end of 2006, he devoted himself to the electrical industry.
Electricians and inspectors benefitted immensely from his knowledge, quick wit, practicality and good-hearted commitment.
W. Creighton Schwan was a good person to know, and a very easy person to talk to and learn from.
From electrician to inspector to NEMA representative to Code-Making Panel member to columnist,
consultant and author, he gave more than his share.
His columns in IAEI News, and later in Electrical Contractor, were avidly read, and they’re still missed.
Herb Richter knew that Creighton was the right man to take over as the author of Practical Electrical Wiring and Wiring Simplified. Over the decades when Creighton updated them, these continued to be the go-to introductory wiring books.
A kindly and unassuming man--but nobody’s fool--Creighton was the person other members of committees and meetings turned to when the wrangling was over.
When he asked David Shapiro to take over as his successor on Practical Electrical Wiring, McGraw-Hill said “Yes!” (An obscure contract clause prevented the transfer.)
Not quite a decade after letting go of Practical Electrical Wiring, Creighton invited David to take over his
library and his files,
and asked him to bring this last Code discussion to the readers who miss him.
If you knew and appreciated Creighton or his work, or would like to, you will find the most extensive biography yet written toward the end of Behind the Code.