Bio- Sawyers

H. C. SCHMIDT.—A splendid example of what a man may accomplish who works intelligently, honorably and persistently, is afforded by H. C. Schmidt, a well-known and influential citizen of Palo Alto. He was born in Baltimore, Md., January 28, 1863, and grew up in that city, and learned the plumbers trade. He then established a plumbing business in Baltimore and manufactured and sold a number of articles of his own patenting used by plumbers.

Mr. Schmidt's marriage united him with Miss Cora Belle Watts, a native also of Baltimore, Md., and they are the parents of one son, H. W. Schmidt, manager of a moving picture film exchange in San Francisco; he is married and has one child. When Mr. Schmidt removed to California he first located in San Francisco and followed his trade of plumbing and many of the best plumbing jobs in the Bay City attest the fine workmanship and thoroughness which characterized his work, among them being the Butler building on Sutter Street. Owing to labor troubles in San Francisco he removed to Palo Alto in 1912 and seeing the possibilities of the moving picture industry, he bought out one of the first moving picture establishments of Palo Alto, located at Emerson Street and University Avenue. Not only did he encounter all the handicaps and perplexities incident to the experimental stage of the motion picture theater but met set-backs resulting from bitter opposition. Firmly determined to excell in his line he put all of his first four year's earnings into rehabilitating the old picture show and six weeks thereafter was burned out by a fire of undoubted incendiary origin and all of his savings went up in an early Sunday morning blaze without a cent of insurance. Undaunted he arose Phoenix-like from the ashes, and three years thereafter built the "Marquee" now known as the Stanford theater, at 217 University Avenue and ran it successfully for six years. He made a modest fortune, when he disposed of it and is now reinvesting it in the erection of the Schmidt block on Emerson Street, adjoining the postoffice. The building will be reinforced concrete and will contain three store rooms and two smaller shops in the rear. Mr. Schmidt is an able business man whose standing in the community is among the best, financially and socially. He deserves much credit for his enterprise and has absolute faith in the future prosperity of Palo Alto and the Santa Clara Valley and expects to invest all of his means in the upbuilding of Palo Alto. He owns a good residence at 313 Waverly Street and is about to erect a more pretentious one. After sixteen years experience he considers Palo Alto the best city socially and commercially in California. He and his wife are highly respected in the community.

From Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California,  published by Historic Record Co. , 1922. page 1154


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