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Photo Feature By Jesse N. Wood & Al Harris

Jacksonville's First Bank, 1891

Thanks to Mr. Jesse N. Wood, retired executive vice president of the former First National Bank of Jacksonville, I've acquired new images and information about Jacksonville's first bank, Tredegar National Bank, which was located near the center of the east side of the public square near A.A. Wilson's hardware store, a funeral home, and a five-and-dime store. This series of photos (here and more extensively on my blog) includes the bank during the 1890s, a piggy-bank given away to customers as a promotional item, two tellers and the money drawer, the old First National Bank on the northwest corner of the square (Tredegar changed its name to First National Bank on March 25, 1913), and the same building as it appears today as occupied by AmSouth Bank. Tredegar National Bank was founded by George Ide of St. Johnsbury, Vermont, in 1891 after Ide raised $58,000. Ide was elected cashier and George Rowan the first president. At the bank's inception, the town was called Drayton for one of its early citizens. But according to the Memoirs of Knox Ide, when Drayton showed sympathy for the Yankees, "the people met and unanimously changed the name to Jacksonville in honor of Stonewall Jackson." Tredegar National Bank survived the Panic of 1893 and came through the crisis that had destroyed hundreds of other banks in the nation. By 1901 it had purchased its present site on the northwest corner of the public square and a new building was erected in 1902. The name was changed to First National Bank of Jacksonville on March 25, 1913. First National's first president was Major Peyton Rowan, Gen. Joseph William Burke, U.S.A., was vice president, and George P. Ide was cashier. State Normal School President Clarence William Daugette, who served as president of the future JSU for 43 years (1899 - 1942), was an officer and leader of the early bank. Dr. Daugette served as a director of the Tredegar National Bank from 1908 to 1913. When it became First National Bank he served as vice president from 1913 to 1934 and as president from 1934 to 1942.

A piggy-bank given away to customers as a promotional item.


All photos copyrighted by the photographer. Please contact Al Harris for permission for commercial use.

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