Adolf E. Schroeder, Professor Emeritus of German Studies at the University of Missouri, died in Columbia on March 29, 2013, after a brief illness. He was 97. Born February 1, 1916 in Covington, Virginia, he was the son of recent German immigrants to the United States, Richard Ernst Schroeder and Rosa Kordula Schroeder. Due to family circumstances, he was taken to Germany at age five and placed in the care of foster parents, Drs Ernst and Hildegard Hempelmann of Dessau. Returning to the United States in 1938, he graduated from the University of Illinois in 1941 and started work on an M.A. at Louisiana State University. He served in the U.S. Army from 1942-1946, and after receiving an M.A. in German Literature at LSU and a Ph. D. from Ohio State University, he later taught at Ohio State, Kent State University in Ohio, the University of Massachusetts and directed an NDEA program for teachers in Ohio. In Missouri he became interested in German, French, and other European settlements in the state and collected many photographs and oral histories relating to immigrant life in Missouri. He was largely responsible for re-establishing the Missouri Folklore Society in the state in 1977 and became widely recognized for his contributions to the preservation of the state’s cultural history and folklore.
Survivors include his wife more than 70 years, Rebecca Boies Schroeder, son and daughter-in-law Richard and Leah Schroeder of Washington, D.C., grandson Michael Schroeder of Washington, D.C., daughter-in-law Betty Schroeder and grandson Luke Schroeder of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. A second son, Christopher Schroeder, died in Baton Rouge in 2008.
A memorial service will be held in late May at Lenoir Woods Retirement Community. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Lenoir Woods Benevolent Fund, the Rotary International Scholarship Fund, or St. Andrews Lutheran Church.