Search billions of records on

The history of the brick structure located in Old Town Dunnigan

Yolo County, California

Construction began in late 1890, and was completed in early 1892


Short biography of the founder:

Henry Watkins Laugenour was born in 1869 - Dunnigan, California. He was the second son of the reputable Yolo County pioneer, John D. Laugenour. His Mother was Emma C. Watkins.

At the age of 13, Henry W. Laugenour was given $2,000 from his Father to start a business of any kind he desired. So, being very interested in books; Henry chose to establish the first book store in Dunnigan, California. Business didn't go as well as he thought it would, so he had to give up on the book store.

In 1885, at the age of 16, Henry Laugenour married Sarah Watkins.

In 1887, at the age of 18, Henry began his first general merchandise store in Woodland, California.

Henry Watkins Laugenour

In 1889, at the age of 20; Henry and Sarah Laugenour welcomed their daughter Hazel Bess Laugenour into the world.

In that same year, Henry set his sights back on his native town of Dunnigan, California. He closed up his mercantile in Woodland, and moved his entire stock of merchandise by railroad to the new store building on Main Street, Dunnigan. Woodland Daily Democrat - August 19, 1890 "Laugenour's store building..."

The following year, 1891; The Laugenour and Company mercantile was noted in the Woodland Daily Democrat for having the largest stock of goods in Northern California.

Woodland Daily Democrat - October 8, 1891 "Hooray for Dunnigan!"

Woodland Daily Democrat - November 25, 1891 "Improvements at Dunnigan"

Business boomed immediately. Henry W. Laugenour soon saw opportunity to expand upon The Laugenour and Company building. He had a 60 foot expansion built onto the rear of the establishment. Within the new portion of the building would stand the first and only bank vault ever built in Dunnigan, California.

Woodland Daily Democrat - December 16, 1891 "Henry does nothing by halves..."

Woodland Daily Democrat - December 19, 1891"...will begin business January 15, 1892"

The Laugenour Banking Company officially opened for business.

Woodland Daily Democrat - February 9, 1892 "...Banking establishment opened Monday..."

Only 7 months later (in August of 1892), Henry W. Laugenour traded the Laugenour and Company mercantile store for his brother, Phillip T. Laugenour's, Woodland home. Both properties were valued at $15,000.

Woodland Daily Democrat - August 1892 "Real Estate Transfers"

Woodland Daily Democrat - September 9, 1892"...transferred to P.T. Laugenour"



Phillip T. Laugenour and his wife, Kate, are known for their land contribution allowing for the Dunnigan Union Church (now the Dunnigan Community Church), to be built. It was completed in 1894. Laugenour's Father in law, Reverend Jones, occasionally performed services at the Dunnigan Union Church.

Sacramento Daily Union December 21, 1895: Article regarding Dunnigan Union Church Association


P.T. Laugenour, (the first son of J.D. and Emma Laugenour), was a known banker of the late 19th and early 20th century in Yolo County. He was a founding member and President of the Yolo County Savings Bank and President of the Winters Savings Bank. He also owned land and was involved in Colusa County to support the Fish and Game Commission.

{ March 5, 1898, Tragedy Strikes }

Fire at Dunnigan - Noted in the San Francisco Call

1898 Dunnigan Fire SFCall

The only remaining reminders of this era are the vault and the church. Both of which stand on County Road 89A. The oldest and most historic places left in the town of Dunnigan, CA.



Henry W. Laugenour Find-A-Grave Memorial

Daughter of H.W.Laugenour Swims Across Golden Gate

Historic Dunnigan (By P.B. Perazzo)

1879 Dunnigan Area Lot Map

1908 Dunnigan Area Lot Map


*Please note that the bank vault is located on private property. No public access is permitted except by authorized personnel. Photos taken with property owner permission.

Vault Interior Photos Coming Soon

E-Mail Questions / Comments.