Biography - John Schmidgall
JOHN L. SCHMIDGALL. It is due to the efforts of the public-spirited
citizens of Murphysboro that this city is at present in such a flourishing
condition industrially and commercially, and to the fact that they have
found time to lay aside their private interests and take up the work of
promoting the movements that have pertained to the civic welfare. Ex-Mayor
John L. Schmidgall, a business citizen of high standing and a leader of
Republican polities in Jackson county, occupies a prominent place among the
representative men of this class. He has been a resident of Murphysboro all
of his life, and was born April 17, 1870, a son of Henry and Sarah (Cooper)
Henry Schmidgall, who is well remembered in Murphysboro
as a business man of excellent reputation, was a soldier during the Civil
war, enlisting August 12, 1862, in Company D, Eighty-first Regiment,
Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and serving until he received his honorable
discharge at Vicksburg, August 5, 1865. He had a fine war record, and when
he took up the occupations of peace was as faithful to his city's interests
as he had been to his country's and during a long period spent in farming
and the transfer business established a reputation for fair dealing and
public-spirited citizenship. His death occurred March 20, 1911.
L. Schmidgall received his early educational training in the public schools
of Murphysboro, after leaving which he entered Washington University, St.
Louis, Missouri, from which institution he was graduated in 1891, with the
degree of C. E. Until 1894 he was engaged in civil engineering, and in that
year became an operator, but in 1900 sold out and became the owner of the
Schmidgall Coal Company, which employs sixty-five men and has an output of
two hundred and fifty tons of coal daily. Since his father's death Mr.
Schmidgall has been the manager of his estate, and he is also a director in
the Southern Illinois Milling Company. He has been very prominent in
Republican politics here, and has served the city as alderman for three
years, resigning that office to accept the nomination for the mayoralty
chair, to which he was eventually elected and served faithfully and
efficiently from 1909 until 1911. He was for a long period a member of the
city school board and is now trustee of the township high schools. Formerly
he was secretary of the Republican County Central Committee, and he now
serves as a member of the executive board. Mr. Schmidgall is a member of the
Illinois Mine Rescue Commission, and has interested himself in other
movements of a progressive nature.
On June 16, 1897, Mr. Schmidgall
was united in marriage with Miss Edna Davis, daughter of G. B. Davis, a well
known pharmacist of De Soto, Illinois, and three children have been born to
this union, namely: Henry Arthur, John Raymond and Robert Green. Fraternally
Mr. Schmidgall is a thirty-second degree Mason, being past high priest in
the chapter, a member of the Knights Templar at Cairo and the Consistory at
Chicago, and he also holds membership in the Elks. Years of activities in
the business and political fields have given him a wide acquaintance, and it
is safe to say that there is no more popular citizen in Murphysboro.
Extracted from 1912 A History of Southern Illinois, volume 2, page 643.