A Century Of Banking

Editor’s note: John P. Herrick, oil historian of Olean, N. Y., founder of the Bolivar Breeze, and for more than 20 years a resident of Allegany County, has written a story of “A Century of Banking in Allegany County.” A personal acquaintance with the bankers and banks of the county during the past half century makes it possible for him to write a new chapter in the history of the county.

By John P. Herrick

The First National Bank of Angelica

            The First National Bank of Angelica was chartered November 3, 1864, with a capital stock of $100,000. Alfred Lockhart was elected president and J. E. Robinson, cashier. The directors were William Common, Alpha Morse, William Wilson, E. E. Johnson, Smith Davis, Robert Renwick, Isaac Miller, H. J. Webb, A. Langdon, Alfred Lockhart and J. E. Robinson. Mr. Lockhart was one of the owners of a paper mill at Joncy Falls at Angelica, a plant that in the early eighties purchased large quantities of junk drilling cables at Bolivar and Richburg for shipment to Angelica by narrow gauge to be converted into paper by the Joncy mill.

            On April 19, 1886, this bank was declared insolvent and placed in the hands of Edward W. Chamberlin, Receiver. Dividends aggregation 100% were paid all creditors who proved their claims, as required by law and on February 15, 1888, the assets remaining in the Receiver’s possession were delivered to Daniel D. Gardiner, the elected agent of the shareholders for liquidation for their benefit. The short Receivership was closed on March 2, 1888.

The State Bank of Angelica

            The State Bank of Angelica was incorporated January 1, 1890, with a capital of $25,000. The first president was Guy C. Hardesty, the vice president William Weaver and the cashier, J. H. Rook, a position the latter filled for 35 years. After being without local banking service for four years, due to the closing of the First National Bank, the business men of the village welcomed the new bank. The State Bank owns and occupied the one story building erected during the Civil War by the long defunct First National Bank. The original bank vault was lined with steel plate and a modern five and a half ton door installed. The office and lobby plaster walls and ceiling were replaced with decorated metal, completing an attractive banking office.

            The capital, surplus and undivided profits of the Bank of Angelica on December 31, 1953, were $87,925.61 and total deposits were $712,106.16. The officers are James A. Young, chairman of the board, W. F. Lilly, president; C. R. Mapes, vice president and R. B. Mott, cashier. The bookkeepers are June Bullock and Lorena Mitchell. The directors are Harold B. Chaffee, John D. Dickson, W. F. Lilly, C. R. Mapes and James A. Young. Mr. Lilly has been a member of the bank staff for 36 years. The population of Angelica is 1390; the elevation 1435 feet.

The First National Bank of Belfast

            The First National Bank of Belfast was chartered January 22, 1910, with a capital of $25,000. The officers were H. B. Van Fleet, president; H. W. Loomis, vice president and R. C. Howden, cashier. The directors were W. J. Fox, Charles English, Patrick Loftis, Charles Shuart, H. W. Loomis, Wm. Engleby, C. J. Minor, C. J. Howdeen, and H. B. Van Fleet. The bank building owned and occupied was erected in 1910.

            The First National Bank of Belfast on December 31, 1953, had capital, surplus and undivided profits of $103,960.68 and deposits of $657,242.89. The present officers are R. C. Howden, president; P. E. Collins, vice president; Archie Hillman, cashier; Dorothy Gallman, assistant cashier and Monica O’Dell, bookkeeper. The directors are Hugh D. Chamberlain, P. E. Collins, R. C. Howden, B. G. Sumner, B. J. Hasper, R. A. Steinbiser and John I. Grey.

The Bank of Belfast

            The Bank of Belfast was organized in 1882 as a co-partnership with stockholders individually liable, and all stockholders directors. The authorized capital was $30,000, with $10,000 paid in. The officers were James M. Davis, president; Charles W. Saunders, vice president and William B. Manley, cashier. A permanent home for the bank was erected in 1903.

            On November 20, 1914, the Bank of Belfast was converted into a State bank with a capital of $30,000. The officers were N. C. Saunders, president and William B. Manley, cashier. The directors were Newland C. Saunders, Addis E. Perry, J. Eaton Kinney, J. Servius Smith, John H. Meinka, William B. Manley, Gilbert R. Ross, William J. Fox and Peter B. Loftis.

            William B. Manley served as cashier from organization of the co-partnership in June, 1882, to 1925, when he was made president and continued to serve in that capacity until his death on November 15, 1940.

            The capital, surplus and undivided profits of the Bank of Belfast on December 31, 1953, were $113,847.99 and total deposits $807,129.55. The officers are W. C. Calkins, president; E. C. Brandes, cashier and Elizabeth E. Kinney, assistant cashier. The directors are W. C. Calkins, S. W. Atherton, E. C. Brandes, A. B. Taylor, James H. Bloomster and Earl Baker. The population of Belfast is 1277 and the elevation 1329 feet.

To Be Continued - Part 4