"A native of Detroit, Charles Schmitter began fencing while a student at the University of Detroit. He helped organize the school's first fencing team and began coaching the Detroit team in 1929. It was during these years that he began to collect fencing books. In 1938 he began his long association with MSU, becoming the school's full-time fencing coach in 1940. He was named "Fencing Coach of the Year" by the National Fencing Coaches Association in 1957. He has served on the fencing committee for the Olympic games several times. In 1956 Charles Schmitter, for whom the Schmitter Fencing Collection is named, became the first native born American to achieve the prestigious Italian Masters Diploma in fencing."