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News Eagle - Hawley, PA
  • Local History: William Scholl's bakery on the canal

  • William J. Scholl, one of Hawley's prosperous German immigrants of the 19th Century, operated a bakery and grocery on 1st Street overlooking the Canal Basin- or in modern terms, Hudson Street with a great view of the upper ball field in Bingham Park.
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  • William J. Scholl, one of Hawley's prosperous German immigrants of the 19th Century, operated a bakery and grocery on 1st Street overlooking the Canal Basin- or in modern terms, Hudson Street with a great view of the upper ball field in Bingham Park.
    He was a native of Bavaria, Germany, born August 4, 1826 near Ammerlach.William (Wilhelm) was one of eight children born to Theodore and Eva Katherina (Grimm) Scholl. Brother Francis and sister Mary also lived in Hawley. Mary was wed to Ernest Waddelinz. Their brother Charles enlisted in the Union Army during the Civil War and was never heard from again after he joined the service.
    Their sister Theresa died in Germany; John stayed in Germany and made shoes. George went to Kansas and farmed. Philip lived in Scranton, Pa., working with the Pennsylvania Board of Health. Their parents lived all their lives in the Fatherland.
    In 1849, William emigrated to America to seek his fortune. He first spent a year in Honesdale applying his trade as a baker, and then came to Hawley.
    For a while he was in business with his wife's sister, Mrs. Mary Schlager; he later rented the business for a year and finally purchased it. Both the 1860 and 1872 Hawley street maps place the store on the fifth lot on 1st Street, east of the corner with 7th Street (Spruce Street). William and his wife Margaret resided upstairs.
    There he successfully managed his shop up to his death on July 6, 1883, at the age of 56. As was recorded in the 1897 Commemorative Biographical Record of Northeastern Pennsylvania, "He managed his affairs with characteristic German thrift, and by industry and economy acquired a comfortable property and became one of the most respected members of the community in which he had settled. Strict honesty and a desire to please marked his dealings with all..."
    We would like to picture and sense the aromas and taste of the baked goods he and his wife produced and were enjoyed by their faithful clientele. When he arrived in Hawley, 1st Street was the principal business district. What we know as Hudson street was lined with stores serving the community as well as the traffic of Delaware & Hudson (D&H) Canal workers and boat families.
    The 1872 map has a business listing for William Scholl. He had both a bakery and grocery, and also sold "wines and lager."
    Michael McAndrews wrote in his 1927 History of Hawley that Scholl had a large bakery. The building was built by the father of William Ferber; Morris Freeman had a clothing store in part of it.
    The entire block burned in 1864, the first of several conflagrations Hawley would face. Several property owners immediately rebuilt, including Scholl. Others moved to the "flats" section south of Middle Creek, the present downtown.
    Page 2 of 3 - William Scholl also served as poormaster in Hawley, a position he held faithfully. The duties of the poormaster were to validate those who applied for relief and issue funds. If the need was great or likely to be long-term, they were sent to the poorhouse instead of being given relief while they continued to live independently.
    In politics he was a Democrat and was a member of the International Order of Odd Fellows. The Scholls were among the original members of St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hawley, which started in 1853.
    He was wed to Margaret Ferber on June 29, 1851 at Honesdale. They raised 11 children, William, Margaret, Elizabeth, August, Lena (married Edward Gardner), Charles, Emma, Sophia, George, Peter and Barbara.
    Sophia married a shoemaker, Ed Goldback, of Hawley. Following their father's death, George was listed as living with his mother and employed at a silk mill. Peter also lived at home.
    The Commemorative also tells us that Mrs. Scholl, now a widow, "at the age of 70 years is a bright, active and well-preserved woman, respected and loved by all who have the pleasure of her acquaintance. She proved a faithful and competent helpmeet to her husband in his business as well as in the home, doing her full share in accumulating the competence which she now enjoys, and it is hoped that she still has many peaceful years before her."
    Mrs. Scholl was born Oct 8, 1827 in Baden, Germany. Her mother Elizabeth died in 1843; her father Jacob Ferber came to America in 1847. He was living with his daughter Margaret when he died November 23, 1889 at Hawley, at the age of 95. His demise was due to an accident at home, falling down the stairs. Margaret was one of six children.
    William J. Scholl was laid to rest at the Eddy Cemetery in Hawley (Walnut Grove).
    Another inferno struck this section of Hawley on Sunday night, December 19, 1897. The Scranton Tribune reported the fire started in a horse barn and spread rapidly, without any fire company to try and stop it. In addition to destroying Nollan's knitting mill on the corner and Evans' general store, several homes were consumed. Among them was the home of Mrs. William Scholl.
    There was no report in the story of any injuries.
    Hawley Fire Department did not organize until 1898.
    The 1912 Hawley street directory has no listings by the name of Scholl. There was an Edward Schlager (wife Sarah), who kept a general store on Church Street near Penn Avenue at that time.
    On April 25, 2000, Arthur W. Scholl of Lake Ariel died at the age of 82. He was born in Hawley, son of Frank and Mary Scholl.
    Zach Wyckoff, with his brother Robert, have researched their family history extensively. They and their sisters Angela and Laurie are the children of Katherine (Sonner) and Will Wyckoff of Hawley. Zach's great-great-great grandfather was Franz Scholl, a brother of William Scholl the baker.
    Page 3 of 3 - Franz had a son Joseph Scholl who immigrated from Germany in 1880 and started a poultry and cattle farm outside Hawley, off Spruce Street. Joseph's son Edward and wife Regina had a daughter Madeline, who married Fritz Sonner.
    The 1925 directory lists Edward C. and Regina Scholl living at 228 Main Avenue. Edward was employed as a knitter.
    The Sonners had a grocery market at 305 Keystone St., Hawley, where their daughter Katherine and husband Will Wyckoff live today.

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