The Glenwood City Community
A mere handful of banks across the country have had the opportunity to display a century of commitment to their community. Hiawatha National Bank’s history began on January 3, 1896 when the First Bank of Glenwood was created to serve a growing community. Organizers of the bank were D.F. Vail of St. Paul, Minnesota; F.W. Vail of Milnor, North Dakota; and L.V. Babcock of Kansas City, Missouri. Near the turn of the century the picturesque logging town, then called simply "Glenwood," was home to over two-thousand residents.
In 1903 Frank Ainsworth of River Falls purchased the bank which was originally located on First Street, and later that same year he built a new facility at 204 East Oak Street. Warren B. and Beth Oskey, (from the Bay City area) took ownership of the bank in 1965 and changed the bank's name to First National Bank of Glenwood after receiving a national charter.
In 1998, the bank adopted a new name, Hiawatha National Bank based on beautiful Hiawatha Valley where the owners were from. In May 2003 it moved into it’s current location at 220 Oak Street.
The Hager City/Bay City Community
In 1916, the residents of Bay City had to travel to surrounding communities-Ellsworth, Red Wing, Plum City, etc. — to conduct their financial transactions.
Residents decided to change that and held an organizational meeting December 11, 1916 at Hager's Hall in Bay City. The group applied for a bank charter, sold $10,000.00 worth of stock to incorporate the new bank and elected the bank's first officials.
The charter was granted in early 1917 and Bay City State Bank opened its doors for the first time on January 27, 1917. One of the bank's first changes came on August 16, 1920 when bank stock was sold to Alvin E. Feldman who had operated a bank with his family since 1909. Upon purchase of the bank he was named cashier, secretary and director of the Bay City State Bank.
When A.E. Feldman, cashier and President of Bay City State Bank for 39 years, passed away in March 1959, the management of the bank passed to the hands of his wife Effie Feldman and daughter and son-in-law, Beth Feldman Oskey and Warren Oskey. The family's banking tradition expanded in 1965 when Warren and Beth Oskey purchased the First National Bank of Glenwood in Glenwood City, Wisconsin. In 1966 the bank moved from its building in Bay City to a newly built bank at its current location in Hager City. Bay City State Bank switched from a state chartered bank to a national chartered bank in 1970 and changed its name at that time. By this time the bank had customers throughout the Hiawatha valley and chose the name Hiawatha National Bank to reflect its expanded customer base.
The Maiden Rock Community
Maiden Rock's first bank, the Bank of Maiden Rock opened in 1892. it was the first bank to open in the area. As a result the Bank had customers from Spring Valley, Elmwood, Plum City, Stockholm and Pepin. The bank was founded by F. W. Carpenter and six of his associates. In 1895 F. W. Carpenter bought out his partners and became sole owner. His sons Charles and Ray helped to run the bank. The Bank was located at the corner of Oak Street (County Rd S) and Main Street, where it still stands today. It became known as the "Carpenter's Bank" and is the second oldest bank in Pierce County.
In 1929 the crash of the stock market marked the onset of the Great Depression. In March of 1933 the Federal Government, acting on orders from The President of the United States, closed banks across the nation to prevent withdrawals of all their resources. The First National Bank of Maiden Rock received a telegram authorizing them to re-open because they were in very good standing.
The bank was operated by three generations of Carpenters until it was sold in 1958 to the First National Bank of Maiden Rock.
Maiden Rock had gained a second bank in 1919 when the First National Bank of Maiden Rock was organized. It was owned and operated by some prominent village businessmen from the lumber company, Burlington Railroad and a Ford dealership and was located just down the street from the Bank of Maiden Rock. Upon purchase of the bank, the First National Bank of Maiden Rock made plans to move into the building at the comer of Oak and Main Street. The interior of the building was remodeled and in May of 1959 the First National Bank moved their banking operations to that location.
The bank was bought by Pierce County Bank and Trust in 1981 and an addition was added in 1985. They felt it important to continue the commitment they had made to small town banking and doubled the square footage of the banks offices. The new addition also provided a walk-up window access.
Pierce County Bank and Trust became a part of Marshall & Ilsley in 1990 and was later purchased by Hiawatha National Bank in 1996.