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Biography of William G. Gittings

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Along well defined lines of labor, guided by sound judgment and controlled with a view to maintaining a high standard of business ethics, William G. Gittings has reached the goal of success, being now manager of the Gold Medal Camp Furniture Manufacturing Company. Racine County claims him as a native son. He was born October 6, 1858, his parents being William and Elizabeth Gittings, who were natives of the north of Wales. The latter was a daughter of Thomas Gittings who followed farming in Wales and there spent his entire life. William Gittings, in 1840, crossed the Atlantic from Wales and for fifteen years made his home in the vicinity of Utica, New York, while in 1855 he arrived in Racine County. He purchased a farm of one hundred and forty acres in Caledonia Township and the place has since been in possession of the family. After devoting his energies to general agricultural pursuits for a number of years, William Gittings and his wife took up their abode in the city of Racine where Mrs. Gittings passed away in 1903 at the age of seventy-four years. Death came to Mr. Gittings when he had passed the eighty-ninth milestone on life’s journey and was on a visit to his old home in Newtown, North Wales. He had been prominent and influential in public affairs in Racine County and was one of its most honored and respected citizens, while both he and his wife were devoted members of the Congregational church. Their family numbered the following named sons and daughters: William G., Christopher C., engaged in law practice in Racine; Mrs. John Pugh, of Racine; John T., of Union Grove; Mrs. Charles Kittinger, deceased; and Ward R. and Elizabeth A., both of Racine.

After attending the public schools William G. Gittings continued his education in McMynn’s Academy and for a year he engaged in teaching school, while for seven years he occupied the position of County superintendent of schools, the educational interests of the County being greatly promoted through his management and through the adoption of methods leading to improvement and progress. On coming to Racine he was appointed to the position of assistant postmaster and occupied that office for nearly five years. Later he was made manager of the Gold Medal Camp Furniture Manufacturing Company, of which extended mention is made above. and in this connection he is active in control of one of the important productive industries of the city. He has not confined his attention, however, to a single line, for his co-operation has been sought in other directions and has proven an element in Racine’s further business development. In 1907 he became one of the organizers of the Racine City Bank and one of its heavy stockholders and from the beginning has filled the office of president. Mr. Gittings is also interested in agricultural pursuits, being the owner of two fine farms in Racine County, both of which are stocked with high grade dairy cows, the entire product of his dairy going to the Gifford Brothers Sanitary Milk Company.

In 1890 Mr. Gittings was united in marriage to Miss Jennie L. Bailey, of Racine County, and they have a son, W. L., who is a graduate of the Wisconsin University. Fraternally Mr. Gittings is connected with the Masons and has passed up through both routes, being a Knight Templar and a thirty-second degree Mason. He is also identified with the Knights of Pythias and the United Commercial Travelers. He belongs to the Commercial Club and attends the Universalist church. His political allegiance is given to the Republican Party, but he does not seek nor desire office, preferring to concentrate his energies upon his business affairs. He is a member of the Industrial School board commissioners and his co-operation can always be counted upon to promote public interests.

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