Henry S. Drinker (1850-1937)

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Group portrait of Henry S. Drinker and others, 1875. (Drinker is in the center of the lower row)

Drinker came to Lehigh to study mining and metallurgy. Not long after he arrived, however, the one faculty member with experience in the area resigned. Lehigh’s then President, Henry Coppée, urged him to major in something else, but Drinker refused. He taught himself most of what he needed to know from books and learned the rest by spending his Saturdays at the zinc mines in Upper Saucon Township. After graduating from Lehigh in 1871, Drinker worked for the Lehigh Valley Railroad. In 1905, he became the President of Lehigh, the only alumnus to have held such a position.