After an apprenticeship in Bavaria, Bartholomäus Schmid worked as a watchmaker in Wels in the early 1920s and then in Vienna from 1927. In subsequent years he opened a small watchmaker's business at Neubaugasse 31 in Vienna's 7th district and developed an extensive network in the German nationalist Turnerbund (gymnastics association) and NSDAP predecessor organizations, which he enlarged during the Austrofascist regime. After the annexation in 1938, he rose rapidly and in March of that year was appointed adjutant to the Vienna deputy mayor Hanns Blaschke. He was also temporary head of the Neubau local council. In May 1938 at the latest he became active in the Aryanization of the clock and jewellery sector. He was thus instrumental in the creation of the "Arisierungsstelle" (Aryanization office) and the Einkaufs- und Treuhandgenossenschaft (ETG) and occupied leading management and supervisory functions in both institutions. He also profited himself from Nazi asset expropriations: apart from two properties in Vienna, he Aryanized Uhren- und Juwelenhandlung Ernst Steiner at Mariahilferstraße 62 in the 7th district and purchased numerous items at rock-bottom prices from the ETG.
After the Second World War the Vienna Volksgericht investigated Schmid but his sentencing to two years' imprisonment and forfeiture of assets in 1948 was on the basis solely of §§ 10 (illegality) and 11 (qualified illegality) of the Prohibition Act. The investigations on suspicion of illegal enrichment under § 6 of the War Criminals Act were conducted separately but in autumn of that year the public prosecutor waived any further prosecution. Schmid was able to have his sentencing reviewed in the early 1950s, and on 26 October 1953 the Volksgericht quashed the 1948 conviction. The investigations were set back to the preliminary stage but were abandoned in November 1953 on application of the public prosecutor's office pursuant to § 109 of the Code of Criminal Procedure – with far-reaching consequences. Ernst Steiner, the original owner of the business Aryanized by Schmid, had already applied to the Finanzlandesdirektion (FLD) für Wien, Niederösterreich und das Burgenland (Regional Tax Office for Vienna, Lower Austria and Burgenland) for restitution in 1949 under the Second Restitution Act. In October 1952 the FLD returned the business to Steiner but a year later, in autumn 1953, Schmid's Volksgericht conviction was quashed. As the asset forfeiture, now revoked, had been a precondition for the restitution decision, the restitution proceedings were now reopened. The FLD quashed the decision and rejected Steiner's appeal on account of non-competence. Thus, the business restituted to Steiner had now to be returned by him to his Aryanizer. The outcome of the Steiner's case against Schmid before the Restitution Commission at the Landesgericht für Zivilrechtssachen (provincial court for civil law matters) in Vienna is not known as the documentation has not been preserved.
From modest beginnings, Schmid's fortunes had risen rapidly after 1938, enabling him to privately acquire artworks and valuables. Schmid had the paintings and drawings probably purchased by him between 1938 and 1944 stored privately by the Städtische Sammlungen Wien in its depots near Vienna. After the war and their return to the premises of Städtische Sammlungen, the Vienna Volksgericht had them seized during the pending case against Schmid. Three of the originally stored objects were missing and were deemed to have been lost. After Schmid had been ordered to forfeit his assets, Vienna Municipal Department 62 took over the objects in the Historisches Museum der Stadt Wien in 1950 and gave them to the Dorotheum for auction. The Historisches Museum kept the painting Fruit Still Life with Bird by Georg Seitz in return for the salvaging and storage. In 1966, two of the paintings deemed to have been lost and belonging to Schmid turned up in the depot of the Landesmuseum Graz, where they had been brought by mistake. One of them was a work by Hubertus van Hove entitled Pantry, which Schmid had acquired in 1944 after it had been seized by the Gestapo as part of the Gomperz art collection. As the FLD had no objections, both paintings were handed over to Schmid. The still life by Seitz is still owned by the Wien Museum. During the systematic provenance research at the Technisches Museum Wien it was also established that Schmid in October 1942 had given the museum a "modern desk clock" and a "modern kitchen clock", but neither of these objects could be traced.