Obit: Schofield, Robert (1836 - 1924)

Contact: Stan


----Source: GREENWOOD GLEANER (Greenwood, Wis.) 07/17/1924

Schofield, Robert (2 FEB 1836 - 9 JUL 1924)

Another of the early pioneers of this locality has hit the long, long trail.

Robert Schofield was born in Dryden, Tompkins Co., N.Y., of revolutionary stock on both sides of his family, on the 2nd day of Feb. 1836, and died in Chicago on the 9th day of July 1924. His father, in early days, settled in Pennsylvania, where at the age of 13 Robert left home and worked for awhile in the state of New York and then went West to Michigan in 1852, and then to Manitowoc in 1853, and to Clark County, Wis. in 1855. He started in the lumber business in Clark County in 1863 for himself and was married to Almeria Burt in 1870. She died in 1908, leaving three children who still survive, Grace Young and Allie Pierrelee of Kansas City, Mo., and Dr. Hugh Schofield of Chicago, Ill.

No one can travel through such a community as Clark County is now without a strong sense of feeling of indebtedness to those early pioneers who blaze their way into the wilderness and through hardships and suffering, turned these wilds into a veritable paradise. Schofield’s corner, a short distance from Neillsville, is pointed out as a place where Robert Schofield started business for himself more than sixty years ago. He was a plain blunt out-spoken man, honest and on the square. He detested lying, trickery, or deceit and was always recognized as being a square shooter and a man of his word. He did not deal with men who he knew to be dishonest. His personal characteristics were honesty, integrity and sobriety. He was entirely devoid of everything hypocritical, and was one of the great army of the real builders of this great nation.

His eighty-eight years and more of life extended through the greatest period of change that the world has ever witnessed or known, or perhaps ever will again witness or know. He left behind him an Eastern home and came to a wilderness in Wisconsin. The modern world owes a great debt to such men as he who withdrew themselves from ease and social comforts and modern life with all its conveniences and enjoyments to devote themselves to pioneering and hardships. He witnessed many changes during his long life and especially in modes of transportation and manufacturing. He saw the development from the ox-cart to the automobile and airship, from the scythe to the self-binder, from the Indian trail to the concrete highway, from the fireplace to the fire-less cooker, from the pony express to the telephone and radio, and from the mule team to the tractor and many others too numerous to mention.

We who travel over state truck highways or railways in autos or Pullmans with all the convenience and luxury of this modern day, can little realize the hardships suffered by those who more than half a century ago undertook the task of subduing the wilderness. Far from home and friends, from ease and comfort and suffering toil and hardships unknown and unimagined by us, they carved out their homes and fortune, reared and educated their families and lived frugal careful lives until they could well afford otherwise.

His last years were spent more or less in the homes of his children in different parts of the country, away from his old haunts and friends and far from the scenes of his life’s endeavors.

But he always managed some time during the year to get back to his own home among the woods and hills in his own little city of Greenwood. But even there he found himself very often meeting with many strange people. But some of the old ones were left and with them he always felt at home. But even though the faces grew strange, the woods and hills and streams around there were to him old friends and old acquaintances, and to him were real and living things.

And among these scenes in the little cemetery (Greenwood Cemetery) on the sloping hillside among the trees and scenes he know so well, he sleeps his last long sleep, and now perhaps is happy.



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