Find a Member:

1953 Horatio Alger Award Winner

Harold L. Schafer*

Founder, Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation

"Do the best you can where you are with what you have."

Harold Schafer was born on a farm in Stanton, North Dakota, in 1912. When he was seven, the family home burned during a winter blizzard. At the age of eight, he went to work in a butcher shop. He attempted college for a time, but left to work full time. He was a traveling salesman for a number of years. In 1942, he began packaging and selling a product he called Gold Seal Floor Wax. He typed labels and taped them onto old cans in his basement. In 1945, he introduced Glass Wax, which increased his sales dramatically. In 1948, Glass Wax went national in distribution. In the 1950s, his success was repeated with the introduction of Snowy Bleach, and then again in the 1960s with Mr. Bubble. Each of these became the #1 selling product in the world in their respective categories. The Gold Seal Company was sold in 1986.

* Deceased