International Textbook Company
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|Headquarters||Scranton, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
The International Textbook Company I.T.C. was founded in 1895 by publisher Thomas J. Foster in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
As its name implies the I.T.C. published instruction papers, booklets, and textbooks for its subsidiary department the International Correspondence Schools. The textbook company and the International Correspondence Schools were dependent on each other from the beginning.
The Correspondence School started in 1891 as a Question and Answer column in the pages of the mining journal titled "Colliery Engineer and Metal Miner" published by Mr Foster. This column was a response to the in depth tests required of miners and inspectors by the "New" Pennsylvania Mine Safety Act of 1885.
The I.T.C. merged the Colliery Engineer School of Mines, School of Mines, Correspondence Schools, and the International Correspondence School as the International Correspondence Schools of Scranton, Pennsylvania, under the new International Textbook Company.
Several Scranton correspondence schools had textbooks printed or published by I.T.C. as direct subsidiaries of the School The Institute of Business Science and as their own entities the Woman's Institute of Domestic Arts & Sciences.
Mr T.J. Foster's less than ethical business practices bankrupted the school and the book company. Philanthropic Scranton bankers and businessmen who saw the potential impact this school would have on their workforce and community reorganized it under receivership in 1905. Many men and women who didn't have the means for schooling past grade 8 in the first half of the 20th century can thank them for their vision. I.C.S. and other later schools such as The American School of Correspondence in Chicago, Illinois, provided a way to gain practical knowledge that could better their earning potential without quitting work for 3–4 years.
The books in The International Library of Technology were published by I.T.C. These books were bound volumes of the course materials for the more than 240 courses offered. These books were used and made available in at least 184 Colleges (Including The U.S. Military Academy at West Point and Cornell University) and at least 649 Public Libraries.
The International Correspondence Schools of Scranton, Pennsylvania, was a pioneer in Post Secondary distance education. It was operated under that name from 1895 until bankruptcy in 1996. I.C.S. is in operation today as the Penn Foster Career School. The American School of Correspondence in Chicago, Illinois, is still in operation today as a non-public secondary school.
- The World's Work By Walter Hines Page, Arthur Wilson Page pp. 319-320
- History of Scranton and Its People By Frederick Lyman Hitchcock, John Phillips Downs pp.353-357(Excerpt from Scranton Teaches the World by William F Gibbons)
- History of Scranton and Its People By Frederick Lyman Hitchcock, John Phillips Downs pp.353-357 (Excerpt from Scranton Teaches the World by William F Gibbons)