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LOETSCHER, John Andrew

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LOETSCHER, John Andrew. (Dubuque, IA, Nov. 25, 1873--Nov. 26, 1962). President, FARLEY AND LOETSCHER MANUFACTURING COMPANY. Hired between 1892 and 1909 to work in the office of his father, Christian LOETSCHER, at Farley and Loetscher Manufacturing Company, Loetscher moved up to become president of the company in 1927.

Loetscher led the company to its national prominence. Manufacturing space expanded until it covered twenty-three acres. In the early 1930s, a plastics division was added to the other company lines.

Products of the new division included Farlite laminated plastics, Farlite Farlwood, and Farlite Compreg. These were used in a wide range of products including tabletops, luggage lining, and instrument panels. Employment peaked at 1,250.

In 1928 Loetscher was one of the incorporators of the Dubuque Community Chest–-a special committee of the Chamber of Commerce which successfully combined the fund drives for the DUBUQUE BOYS' CLUB, YOUNG MEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION (Y.M.C.A.), YOUNG WOMEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION (Y.W.C.A.), Sunshine Circle, MOUNT PLEASANT HOME, HILLCREST BABY FOLD Salvation Army and DUBUQUE VISITING NURSE ASSOCIATION. It was a predecessor of the United Fund and United Way. Loetscher served as the first president of the Dubuque Community Chest, trustee of the LINWOOD CEMETERY Association, president and member of the board of the FINLEY HOSPITAL (THE), and a director and trustee of the UNIVERSITY OF DUBUQUE. He was also one of the seven founders of the Millwork Cost Bureau.

Loetscher was one of Dubuque's first airplane enthusiasts. Associated with the Dubuque Aircraft Company, he built three airplanes between 1914 and 1916. His first craft was a monoplane. In 1916 he built a flying boat for use in the DUBUQUE AVIATION SCHOOL. Loetscher's flying days came to an end in 1917 when he was injured flying one of his planes.

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Linwood Legacies. "The Loetscher Family." Online: http://www.linwoodlegacies.org/the-loetscher-family.html