Territorial Women's Memorial Rose Garden
Bertha was born on April 30, 1908, in Prescott, Arizona Territory. She was the third of six children born to Paul Gerhardt and Dora Cordelia Leach Rosenblatt.

She was of true pioneer stock. As a child, her grandmother, Dora Morton, walked behind covered wagons from Kansas to Colorado in the 1860s where her family engaged in ranching and mining. Bertha's father came west from his birthplace in Greeneville, Tennessee, to Prescott in 1892.

Paul, who was hoping for a son after Cordelia (Delia) presented him with two daughters, named his third child Bertha Louise in honor of his youngest sister. She had come to Prescott on a visit from the Rosenblatt family home in Tennessee. Soon, however, the namesake baby was nicknamed “Pete,” as was her father. She was “Pete” for the rest of her life.

She attended Lincoln School, which at that time had grades one through four only. Then she attended Washington School on the opposite side of town. Everyone walked in those days, and she often reminded her children that not only did the sisters walk to and from school, they even came home for lunch.

Prescott High School was next. Pete was very active in school, participating in Glee Club and varsity basketball among other things. The athletic teams traveled by train so it was a grand adventure for the boys and girls to compete interscholastically over the northern part of the state.

With her older sisters, Pauline and Dora, the girls attracted a lot of attention from the high school boys. The Rosenblatts opened their house for guests and parties. While her sisters played in a band they had organized, Pete chose to dance. She was beautiful, full of life and quite petite. There were a host of suitors. Among them was young Barry Goldwater, who eventually proposed matrimony. Pete said she turned him down because he seemed to be a playboy who wouldn’t amount to much.

Pete graduated from high school in 1927 and attended The University of Arizona, where she was a member of Pi Beta Phi sorority. After three years at the University, she left to marry Clair K. Scholey, who was also from Prescott.

Clair attended the University of Southern California. He was the son of Charles K. Scholey, who was born at Walnut Creek, A.T., in 1875. Charles married Carrie Hurtle. Clair was their only child.

Pete and Clair continued to live in Prescott after their marriage. Clair was very adventuresome and purchased an airplane. Together they barnstormed around the Southwest giving rides for a penny a pound. She said it was not a very good way to make a living, but it was great fun.

Charles Scholey partnered in a renowned Prescott watering hole named Scholey and Stephen’s on North Cortez Street. In addition to libations, billiards and pool, the bar also offered a bowl of beans to its customers. The beans were rather famous in town and were referred to as The Scholey Beans. For decades thereafter at family gatherings, Pete provided the delicious beans.

They Scholeys had two daughters, Claire Kay and Cordelia (“Dee”), both of whom were born in Prescott.

Pete and Clair bought a speedboat in partnership with Ralph Hooker, who was an old Prescott friend. This was about the time when Willow Creek Dam was built. Willow Creek filled, and a boat landing was installed at what was humorously called Lackawanna Beach on the western shore of the lake. Powerboat racing had a brief period of popularity in Prescott, cut short probably by lack of water in the lake.

Shortly after the beginning of World War II, Pete and Clair moved to Bellflower, California, where they both worked at Douglas Aircraft making the various airplanes needed for the war. They worked different shifts so that one of them was always home with the girls. Pete’s Victory Garden assisted not only her family but also many neighbors. At the end of the war, the family moved back to Prescott, where Clair opened a boat and cabinet-building business. He was an exceptional craftsman.

In 1948, Clair died. Pete was left with two daughters and no means to support them. There were few jobs for women, and in the insurance field they were a rarity. Pete went to work for Mayes and Heap, an insurance agency, as an underwriter. She quickly learned the business to a high degree of proficiency and followed that career for the rest of her working life.

She married Tom Boone in Prescott. Later they moved to Gold Hill, Oregon, where they purchased a ranch. Tom tended to the ranch, and Pete was quick to return to work as an insurance underwriter for the Singmaster Insurance Company in Medford, Oregon. While in Oregon, she was active in the Soroptimist Club. She especially enjoyed the organization’s work with the Ashland Shakespearean Festival.

Pete was always a wonderful and inventive cook. On the ranch, she took great pride in preparing meals from their vast vegetable gardens and their own livestock. Her recipes for chili beans and potato salad, etc. were family favorites. She had a passion for reading and enjoyed an extremely broad variety of literature. Growing up with music all around her, she was especially fond of the songs and sounds of the 1920s and 1930s.

In the late 1970s, Pete left Oregon and moved to Canyon Lake, California, to be near her daughter, Dee Zasio and her family. However, yearning to return to her beloved Arizona, Pete moved back to Prescott in 1980, where she lived in the old Rosenblatt home at 110 Willow Street until her death three years later. Her ashes are inurned between her mother and father in the I.O.O.F. Cemetery in Prescott.

She was the first of the five Rosenblatt sisters to die. Her grandmother, Dora Leach Russell Bubar; her mother, Dora Cordelia Rosenblatt Walker; her sisters Dora Virginia Rosenblatt Heap; Louise Caroline Rosenblatt Lynch; and Pauline Gerhardt Rosenblatt Tovrea are also commemorated in the Territorial Women’s Memorial Rose Garden.

Donors: Dee Zasio, daughter, and Paul G. Rosenblatt, brother.
September 2005

Additional documentation and photographs may be available in the Sharlot Hall Museum Archives and Library.