HENRY M. SCHMOLDT, Beardstown, Illinois.–-It is the constitutional privilege of every American to aspire to the highest honors within the gift of the people; and when such aspiration is supplemented by progressive and well balanced mentality, backed with integrity, tact and energy, it follows as a law of natural selection that such a man is a leader among his fellow men. It matters not whether his father be a prince of fortune, or an humble mechanic; the law of selection, made natural by the inspired principles of our constitution, remains the same; for under the beneficent and noble doctrine of a true republican government, monarchial succession is relegated to the repellent past, and all men are born equal--equal in the right of law and privilege, the only aristocrat being the man possessing a wealth of brains. Such a man may have an academic sheepskin learnedly inscribed as an early voucher to his mentality and title to distinction. When such is happily the case the man simply rises the more rapidly, simply obtains an earlier hold upon the confidence and respect of his fellow men. The history such a man makes becomes his own property, so to speak, and not alone an embellishment of the future. His progress has outstripped time, and he lives to read, in accredited form and in the suffrage of approval of his fellow men, the story of his life. How eminently fitting to a good life is such an honor, and how few men enjoy it! It is one of those few, a man who, though still in the morning of his life, has made a record worthy the pages of history that this sketch is written.
Henry M. Schmoldt was born in Cass county, Illinois, September 19, 1858. He is the eldest son of Robert G. and Johanna (Blohn) Schmoldt, both natives of Hanover, Germany. Robert G. Schmoldt was the eighth son of Herman Schmoldt, a wealthy land owner in Hanover. The father of Henry M. Schmoldt spent a portion of his early life upon the ocean. In 1852 he was married, by the American consul at Hamburg, to Miss Johanna Blohn, of Hanover, after which he emigrated to the United States, locating in New York city. In July of the following year he removed to Beardstown, where with his good wife he enjoys the fruits of a well-earned competence and good name.
In 1890, at the retirement of his father from business, Henry M. Schmoldt, in company with his brothers, Adolph E. and Robert W., assumed full control of the extensive business built up by their father, a business which with the advent of younger blood at the helm has made additional strides in the favor of the public. The boyhood of Henry M. Schmoldt was full of active usefulness and hard work. At the usual age he entered the public school at Beardstown, and to this, the education there obtained, was added a commercial course of study in a business college in St. Louis, Missouri, after which he took a course at Asbury (now Depauw) University, Greencastle, Indiana.
In 1876, he returned to Beardstown and associated himself with his father in the manufacture of cooperage supplies, and has continued in the business ever since, the firm now being Schmoldt Bros. & Company. This firm also deals extensively in lumber and house-furnishing supplies.
Mr. Schmoldt, of whom this sketch is written, is one of the younger war horses in the Republican party, and has widened his strength and wisdom in ofice by having been repeatedly elected to the office of Mayor of Beardstown, besides having served as Alderman for several years. He is a hard worker, scrupulous and exact in his dealings with men, and a staunch advocate of the principles of the great party, in whom and through whom he sees the great truths which his party believes have made America what it is. He is, however, more of a statesman than a politician; for politicians are not generally given to great scruples in matters of conscience in politics, and Mr. Schmoldt is; but it is the honest, straightforward man that wins a lasting meed of victory in politics as well as in social and business life; and such is the record of Mr. Schmoldt. In the local counsels of the Republican party he is an able and welcome adviser.
On May 12, 1880, Mr. Schmoldt was married to Miss Lena Earhardt, of Beardstown, daughter of the late Dr. Fred Earhardt, an old and leading physician of Cass county. They have one child, a daughter, whom they have named Jennie.
Socially, Mr. Schmoldt is a prominent member of the Masonic fraternity, and also of the Odd Fellows. Personally he is kind, courteous and affable.
Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois, Biographical Review Publishing Co., Chicago, 1892, pages 182-184.
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