James W. McLaughlin

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James W. McLaughlin
BornNovember 1, 1834
Sewickley, Pennsylvania
Died1923 (aged 88–89)
BuildingsJohn Uri Lloyd House
Sir Alfred T. Goshorn House
Cincinnati Zoological Gardens
Cincinnati Public Library
Mabley & Carew
First Lieutenant James W. McLaughlin

James W. McLaughlin (November 1, 1834 – March 4, 1923) was a Cincinnati, Ohio architect. He studied to be an architect working under famed James Keys Wilson. He fought in the American Civil War serving in the Union Army. During the late 19th century, he became a popular builder in Cincinnati. In 1870 he helped organize the Cincinnati chapter of the American Institute of Architects; that year, he was selected as a Fellow of the AIA, serving on its board.

Early life[edit]

James W. McLaughlin was born on November 1, 1834, the second son of William and Mary McLaughlin.[1] His family was "largely" Scots-Irish and his father William was an early Cincinnati merchant who had moved in 1818 to the developing city from Sewickley, Pennsylvania outside Pittsburgh.[2] His younger sister Mary Louise McLaughlin became a ceramic artist.

When the American Civil War broke out, McLaughlin left his architectural practice to serve in the Union Army. During the war he became a lieutenant in the infantry body guard of General John C Fremont.[1] He also was a Special Artist for Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper.[3]

After the war he published "a book illustrated with his vivid vignettes of army life based on his experiences with General Fremont in California."[2]

Architectural career[edit]

At the age of fifteen McLaughlin entered the tutelage of James Keys Wilson.[1] In 1855, the first year of his independent practice, he built the dry goods store on West Fourth Street.[1] Architect Samuel Hannaford was his rival in the city.[2] McLaughlin's design for the Cincinnati Zoological Gardens (1874–1875) "produced the earliest completed structures specifically for that purpose in the United States, and displayed his sense of humor and flexibility in housing specimens in buildings inspired by their geographical and ethnically associated origins."[2]


McLaughlin helped organize the Cincinnati Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in 1870. He served as the group's president from 1878–1882 and 1889–1893.[2] He was made a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects in 1870, served on its board, and "was active in their national meetings, including that held in Cincinnati in 1889, when the AIA and the Western Society of Architects merged."[2]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Ellis & McLaughlin 2003, p. 5
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Walter E. Langsam James W. McLaughlin Archived 2010-09-17 at the Wayback Machine, Biographical Dictionary of Cincinnati Architects, 1788–1940
  3. ^ The Becker Collection: James W. McLaughlin
  4. ^ Trudy Backus Cincinnati's Architectural Nuance 11/4/2008
  5. ^ St. Francis Seraph Church website
  6. ^ Annie Kramer Motch Jewelers; In downtown Covington, KY since 1857
  7. ^ NRHP listing 87000905
  8. ^ a b c d James W. McLaughlin Emporis
  9. ^ 4th & Plum Apartments/ Gibson Art Building
  10. ^ McQuillin 2010
  11. ^ Marsh 1997, p. 49
  12. ^ Wayne County Courthouse
  13. ^ NRHP listing #78000042
  14. ^ NRHP listing 76001434
  15. ^ "First Unitarian website". Archived from the original on 2011-07-11. Retrieved 2010-02-19.
  16. ^ Marsh 1997, p. 51
  17. ^ NRHP listing 73001459
  18. ^ NRHP listing 82003581
  19. ^ NRHP listin #73001461
  20. ^ McAlpin website
Further reading
  • Ellis, Anita J.; McLaughlin, Mary Louise (2003). The ceramic career of M. Louise McLaughlin (2003 ed.). Ohio University Press. ISBN 0-8214-1505-0. - Total pages: 243
  • Marsh, Betsa (1997). "Getting us where we live". Cincinnati Magazine (1997 ed.). Cincinnati Magazine Vol. 30, No. 12 - Emmis Communications. ISSN 0746-8210. - Total pages: 104
  • McQuillin, Steven (2010). "Hamilton County Courthouses". probatect.org. Retrieved March 3, 2010.

External links[edit]