Forbidden City Tour: Charles Schroer

Charles Schroer Mortuary

Forbidden City Tour: Charles Schroer

With again much thanks to Downtown Mansfield Inc. and Preservation Ohio, the public was allowed inside to view the former Charles Schroer Mortuary. What seemed nothing more than a rather generic building along North Diamond Street in Mansfield, Ohio was actually part of the large Schroer business that at its height, occupied half of the block from East Temple Court to East Fifth Street.

The Charles Schroer Company was founded in 1857 by Charles Schroer Sr. in a small building at the corner of Diamond and Fourth Street. Schroer began building caskets and business picked up enough that a three-story structure was constructed in 1863 at 117-133 North Diamond Street. In this larger building was the family casket-making business on the first floor, and apartments on the upper floors – including one for Charles Schroer Jr. who was born in one of the nicely adorned units. He eventually matured and went to work in the family business, then renamed to Charles Schroer and Son. It soon became apparent that an extension of the business, into funeral directing, would be of sound fiscal sense.

In 1914, a fire-proof mortuary was constructed next door, and was the first fire-proof structure in Mansfield. An embalming and preparation area was constructed in the basement, which the body would be raised via a hand-operated elevator to the first level where a chapel was located. The body would then be raised to the second level to a viewing room where there was a large skylight.

In the 1930s, the mortuary was closed. The Charles Schroer Company continued on, selling furniture and carpet. On November 29, 1963, the Charles Schroer Company conducted its final sale of stock as it declared that it was going out of business. It was then the oldest business in the city.

Further Reading

4Comments

  • Bob Schroer / 16 September 2012 6:16

    Hello All, This is Bob Schroer, aka Charles Robert Schroer, fifth generation since my Grandfather who founded the business. He imigrated from Epstein Germany becoming an American Citizen on October 8, 1866. Enjoyed finding the link to my family history.

    • m Gilliam / 18 September 2012 8:32

      Hi Bob is there any way that a small paranormal investagation team could view this for a few hours? Please contact me at wiilieman@aol.com. I would be happy to give you our website etc. Our founder is a retired Butler Cty Sherrif…………It would be a drive for us but I am sure that we would all be interested in viewing and I promise you will receive the utmost respect. Thanks for your time…Mitzi Gilliam PORT Ohio

  • m Gilliam / 18 September 2012 4:17

    is this building ava for paranormal investigations? By a team not just for a hoot. Stirckly for science if so contact me at wiilieman@aol.com Mitz/ PORT Ohio thanks

  • Bob Schroer / 27 September 2012 12:29

    @ m Gilliam, You will need to contact a John or AnnMarie Fernyac. May be able to find John through the Downtown Mansfield Association downtownmansfield.com or at the Carasol Park http://www.richlandcarrousel.com – Bob

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