Yolo County, California
Short biography of the founder:
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.
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!"
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..."
The Laugenour Banking Company officially opened for business.
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"
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.
Fire at Dunnigan - Noted in the San Francisco Call
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.
RELATED WEBSITES:Henry W. Laugenour Find-A-Grave Memorial
*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.