In 1913, Frank J. Schmitt started Mendota Monument Company, providing high quality granite memorials to the area until his death in 1944. Starting the second generation, his sons Donald, Ralph, and Robert took over the business. Even though all three perfected the skills needed to do memorials, they all had their own specific place in the business. Donald did all the cutting of the stencil and the sandblasting. Ralph was in the sales end of the business, not only in the office but over the road. He was the only one who did the hand tooled lettering, such as Square Raised and V-Sunk lettering. Robert did all the layout of the lettering and was involved in the cemetery end of the business. He was the one who did all the foundations for the memorials and the setting of the memorials.
At the passing of Donald in 1972, the start of the third generation began. Robert’s son Ron joined the business. Again, learning all aspects of the business, Ron took over the layouts, drawing of designs and cutting of the stencil. He also took over the hand tooling of the Square Raised and V-Sunk lettering. After the retirement of Ralph in 1980, another one of Robert’s sons, Steve, came into the business. He started out and continues to work in the cemeteries putting in the foundations and the setting of the memorials.
In 1996, Robert retired allowing the fourth generation, Erik, Ron’s son to join the business. He works with Steve in the cemeteries, but with the addition of special computer software, he lays all the lettering out on the computer along with designs and full size layouts of the actual memorial so families can see to scale how the memorial will look. Ron, Steve, and Erik continue to work together to provide the highest quality memorials using the best granites available, the same techniques passed from generation to generation and the personal care that has built the reputation they have today.