There are few men in the entire state, if any, who have won as brilliant a success in the business world by reason of meritorious work and real ability as has the subject of this brief article. He is at the present time one of the proprietors of the large mercantile establishments in Lapwai, Kamiah, Nez Perce and Forest, operated by Lester Coffin & Schildman. They have an extensive trade at all these establishments. He has put his whole life and spirit into the mercantile world and being admirably fitted with natural talent, he has made a success that would be a crowning effort to a full life in this important line and is still numbered with the young men of the County.

We will note the details of his career, as they will be interesting in the history of the County where he has wrought with such excellent wisdom. Henry H. was born in Warsaw, Illinois, on November 20, 1871, being the son of Henry and Josephine Schildman. The father was a farmer, born in Ohio, in 1838, and now lives in Warsaw. The mother was born in Warsaw, her parents having come as early pioneers to that country. They both died when she was an infant and she was reared by her grandparents, who were pioneers of Illinois. Our subject worked at home, attended school in Warsaw, and later attended college two years. He remained with his parents until the time of his majority. In 1895 he longed for the west and accordingly came to Spokane. Six months were spent there, after which he repaired to Lewiston, accepting a position in the mercantile establishment of Coffin Brothers, leading merchants of Lewiston. During his stay with them, which was two years, they had opened a store at Lapwai when the reservation was thrown open for settlement. Mr. Schildman was installed as manager and soon his real worth and ability led the proprietors to take him as a partner. He has picked up the Nez Perces language and does a large business with the Indians.

Mr. Schildman is a thirty-second degree Mason. He is also a member of the I. O. O. F. Politically, he is a Republican and active in good government, but will never have his name placed for office, as he is occupied with business. Mr. Schildman is a firm believer in broad education and thus is sure that the general morals of the people will be bettered, and he labors for good schools.

Back to: Nez Perce Biographies

Source: An Illustrated History of Northern Idaho, Embracing Nez Perce, Idaho, Latah, Kootenai and Shoshone Counties, Western Historical Publishing Company, 1903