|A Year of Indiana History - 2016|
Doctor Theodore Horton supplied the capital required to start the Horton Manufacturing Company in Bluffton, Indiana. The first product manufactured by the fledgling company was a corn planter for which the company held the patent.
Horton Manufacturing Company
Doctor Horton was the principal stockholder of the company. He formed a partnership with William K. Vandegriff and Rachel V. Blackstone under the name of the T. Horton Company. The success of the corn planter enabled the company to purchase the patent for a washing machine, which the company also manufactured and sold. The company marketed the washing machine as the “Improved Western Washing-machine.” The company also did well with this machine. In 1879, the Dr. Horton sold most of his interest in the company, retaining some royalty rights. The company then moved to Jamestown, New York in 1880 and began manufacturing there. Sometime in 1881, Horton resumed the business in Bluffton. The two companies entered a legal fight over patent rights. Eventually the company in Bluffton, forced into receivership, closed.
Located in the northeastern part of Indiana, Bluffton is about fourteen miles south of Fort Wayne, Indiana. Indiana State Roads 1, 124 and 116 intersect in the town center. The town resides on the banks of the Wabash River and serves at the county seat of Wells, County. Pioneers founded the town in 1838. Bluffton has adopted the nickname "Parlor City" after a visitor applied the term early in the Twentieth Century. The visitor used the term, which referred to a home's parlor, after Bluffton paved the streets with a hard surface material. Homeowners at the time maintained the parlor of a home as the cleanest room in the house to entertain guests. Bluffton's downtown boasts many Victorian style buildings built during the 1890's. The city has earned the reputation of being the cleanest city in Indiana, as well as one of the most picturesque. Situated on a bluff high above the Wabash River, the city boasts fine views of Indiana's river, the Wabash. For more information about Bluffton, contact:
Bluffton City Hall
128 East Market Street
Bluffton, IN 46714
A Year of Indiana History - 2016
© Paul Wonning