Uncle Tom's Newport School Candy
703 Europe Bay Road • Ellison Bay, WI 54209 • 920-854-4538
Gratitude is Attitude
Heather was born and raised in Gills Rock and has lots of ties to this schoolhouse. As a child she would often ride her bike down to visit Uncle Tom's store and buy some of the great candy he made. Her grandparents and some of her uncles actually attended school in this building.
Jim is a commercial fisherman who works out of Gills Rock with Heather's father, uncle and several other great guys. Jim was born in Illinois and lived in Elmwood Park, which is why they love the Bears and the Cubs (although Heather's father isn't too happy about that).
Heather loves the store and plans to keep the memories alive as she continues making Uncle Tom's great products and adding a few new ones of her own.
The Laughlin family thanks you for visiting this Website, and hopes that you will stop in at Uncle Tom's store on your next visit to Door County.
God Bless! - The Laughlin Family
The Laughlin Family
Heather and her husband Jim Laughlin bought the store in June of 1997 from Aunt Marge Larson. She continued to help in the store for a few weeks until Heather was comfortable running the store on her own. (Heather jokes that she probably sold a lot of bad fudge that summer, since it was the hardest product for her to learn to make.) Heather runs the store and does most of the cooking herself with the help of wonderful employees. She and Jim live upstairs from the store with their three children Alyssa, Anthony and Alex.
Tom Collis (Greek) grew up in Illinois. He learned how to make peanut brittle and fudge from his father who owned a candy store in Illinois. The pancake and porridge recipes were his mother's. Uncle Tom was a great guy who loved people, life and God. He honeymooned in Door County, fell in love with the Peninsula and eventually decided to retire here. He lived down the road from our store with his wife Alicia and ran this candy store with the help of his neighbor Marge Larson. Uncle Tom never had any children.
Marge Larson worked for him for about 20 years and later became his business partner. After Uncle Tom died she ran the store for seven years until she retired.
Uncle Tom worked with his father in his store in Illinois for many years and later worked as a milkman. He also sold his pancake mix on his milk route. He was always big into politics and entered his name as a write-in candidate for Mayor of Forest Park, Illinois. He did win and served one term from 1939-1943.
When did Uncle Tom die?
He passed on in July of 1990 at the age of 86. He was buried here in Ellison Bay.
Was this an old schoolhouse?
Yes, it was the Newport Schoolhouse which was built in the early 1900's replacing a one-room schoolhouse at this location. The new school had two rooms upstairs, one for the 1st through 4th grades and the other for the 5th through 8th grades. Students attended classes at the school until the mid-1950s when it closed.
When did Uncle Tom start the store?
The schoolhouse sat empty for years. Farmer's stored potatoes in the schoolhouse until Uncle Tom bought it in the 1960s and opened his store here in the 1970s.
Heather & Jim
Uncle Tom & Marge
Uncle Tom's Newport School Candy • 703 Europe Bay Road • Ellison Bay, WI 54209 • 920-854-4538