First National Bank of Hallettsville

Texas Historical Marker - First National Bank of Hallettsville

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Oldest bank in Lavaca County; has operated in this city block continuously since its establishment by Friench Simpson (1848-1923) and Carey Shaw (1854-1944), former employees of the J. H. Simpson Bank, Columbus. Shaw was also one of the original officers in the Texas Bankers Association, founded in 1885.

In 1888, the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railroad was being built through Hallettsville. When S. A. A. P. construction gang reached here, the need for a local bank became apparent, and Simpson and Shaw organized "The Lavaca Bank" as a private institution, opening for business in southeast corner of the Kroschel General Merchandise Store, in this block.

In 1890, they chartered the Lavaca County National Bank of Hallettsville, and took over entire Kroschel Building. In this bank, Shaw was president; T. Y. Hill, vice president; Friench Simpson, cashier; H. M. Tippett, assistant cashier; Joe Kahn and T. H. James, directors. Present name was adopted at bank's rechartering on May 21, 1910. Carey Shaw continued as a director until 1909; Friench Simpson until October 13, 1914. Succeeding generations of the Simpson family have also served in staff and management. New building, erected 1973, occupies the original site and adjacent lots.

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