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Death often removes from our midst those whom we can ill afford to lose and such was the case when George H. Laughton was called to his final rest. He had for a number of years been active in the management of the Chicago Rubber Clothing Company, of which he was one of the founders, and thus he instituted an important productive industry of Racine. He was born in Platteville, Wisconsin, November 20, 1845, a son of George R. and Mildred (Durley) Laughton, the former a native of London. England, while the latter was born in Maryland. They became early settlers of Wisconsin and Mr. Laughton was well known in this state as a capitalist.
After mastering the branches of learning taught in the public schools George H. Laughton became a pupil in the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland, which he attended for two years. He afterward embarked in the agricultural implement business in Chicago and continued active in that line until the fire of 1871. He became closely associated with the manufacturing interests of Racine in 1886, when he aided in organizing the Chicago Rubber Clothing Company, of which he became general manager, with L. S. Blake as the president and Mrs. E. V. Laughton as secretary and treasurer. The factory was built in Racine in 1887 and Mr. Laughton and his family removed to this city so that he might be in close touch with the business. The present officers are: David G. Janes, president; Mrs. E. V. Laughton, treasurer; and G. G. Bryant, secretary and manager. The plant employs about two hundred and fifty people and the product is sold all over the United States. Mr. Laugh-ton continued active in the conduct and management of the business until his demise, which occurred July 30, 1893.
It was June 5, 1867, that Mr. Laughton was united in marriage to Miss Emma L. Virgin, who was born in Platteville, Wisconsin, a daughter of Noah H. and Pamela (Weed) Virgin, who were pioneer residents of Wisconsin, the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Connecticut. Mr. Laughton attended the Universalist church and his life was ever upright and honorable, exemplifying the teachings of the Masonic fraternity, in which he held membership. He enjoyed the respect and goodwill of all who knew him and he had a large circle of warm friends by reason of his geniality and unfeigned cordiality. His admirable qualities endeared him to all and his memory is yet revered by those with whom he came in contact. Mrs. Laughton is treasurer of the company and is well known in the business world and socially she belongs to the Woman’s Club and is also an active worker in the Universalist church and its different societies.