Reputed to be the largest flour merchandising concern in the State of Rhode Island is the E. J. Horton Company, of Providence, and to the enterprise and industry of its proprietor, Everett J. Horton, who founded the company in 1910, is due its present prosperity. Born, reared, and educated in Providence, Mr. Horton regards the interests of the town as of equal importance to his own and he has a host of friends who have known him throughout his life and esteem him not only for his business ability but also for the sterling fundamental worth of his character. Actively interested in all manner of civic affairs, he has served in official capacities with the Republican party, to which he gives his political allegiance, and to the public-at-large as a member of the Board of Fire Commissioners, member of the Board of Public Safety, and of other city service bodies.
Mr. Horton was born March 10, 1880, in Providence, the son of Jarvis S. Horton, native of Rehoboth, Massachusetts, and a wholesale and retail grocery merchant throughout his life. He is a direct descendant of Lieutenant James Horton, who fought with the Colonial Army in the war of the Revolution. His wife, now deceased, was before her marriage Ida F. Battey of Providence. Their son attended the public grade schools and the Classical High School of Providence, and secured his higher education at Brown University, where he distinguished himself scholastically and was chosen captain of the debating team during his senior year. He also had the honor of being named one of the commencement speakers at the graduation exercises of his class in 1902. Mr. Horton’s first position, after his school work had been completed, was with Arbuckle Brothers Company where he remained one and one-half years before becoming associated with N. L. Berry and Company, flour merchants, in 1904. But his desire was to have a business of his own and, in 1910, he resigned to organize the E. J. Horton & Company of which he has since been sole proprietor. He has constantly enlarged the scope of his operations until now the concern is representing flour mills in New York State, Ohio, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota and Montana, and is among the largest concerns of its kind in Rhode Island. The offices are located at No. 1117 Turks Head Building.
Mr. Horton is prominent in fraternal affairs. He is a Past Master and now is serving as treasurer of Mt. Vernon Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons, and is a member of Providence Chapter, Royal Arch Masons; Providence Council, Royal and Select Masters; St. John’s Commandery, Knights Templar, all the Scottish Rite bodies, and Palestine Temple, Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine. From his Brown University days he belongs to Delta Upsilon Fraternity and Cammarian Club. Mr. Horton is a member of the Providence Rotary Club, the Providence Chamber of Commerce, and the Turks Head Club. For some time he has served as a director of the Providence Young Men’s Christian Association and in the same capacity for the Providence Chapter, American Red Cross. It is, however, in the field of politics that Mr. Horton spends the larger share of his extra time, perhaps, for he is intensely interested in it. For five years he was a member of the Republican City Committee and as a result of his various public activities received the appointment to membership on the board of fire commissioners, a post he held for the eleven years from 1917 to 1928, four years of the time serving as chairman of the board. He has also served on the Providence Board of Contracts and the Board of Public Safety. Mr. Horton is a member of the corporation of the People’s Savings Bank. He is a member and earnest supporter of the Asbury Methodist Episcopal Church. He was elected as a delegate to the Quadrennial General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1920 and 1924, heading the delegation of the New England Southern Conference. He is treasurer of the local church, having served as such from 1910 to the present time.
In 1905 Mr. Horton married Mabel Iris Clark, native of Quebec, Canada. To this union were born four children, two of whom survive:
- Iris Clark, a graduate of Skidmore College in the class of 1928, and now employed as stylist for various jewelry manufacturers in Providence and Attleboro.
- Philip Clark, who is a student at Princeton University, class of 1933.
Carroll, Charles. Rhode Island: Three Centuries of Democracy, vol 3 of 4. New York: Lewis historical Pub. Co., 1932.