Minnesota County Histories
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First National Bank Of Fairfax
The History of Renville County, Volume 2
Compiled by Franklyn Curtiss-Wedge
Chapter XXIX
pp. 707-708

First National Bank Of Fairfax. On March 26, 1910, the following persons signed articles of incorporation and applied to the Comptroller of the Currency for a charter to organize a national bank at Fairfax: E. F. Sell, J. I. Carson, H. S. Comer, August Paulson, J. M. Hinderman, A. E. Fenske, Herman Schmechel, Albert O. Mundahl, August F. Rieke, Albert Briese, Embrik Hanson, August Sell, H. L. Hinderman, W. A. Fiss, A. M. Crandall and John Durbahn. On June 6, 1910, the Comptroller of Currency of the United States issued a charter, No. 9771, authorizing the First National Bank, of Fairfax, Minn., to commence business with a capital of $25,000 and a paid-in surplus of $5,000. The first board of directors consisted of twelve members, namely: H. S. Comer, E. F. Sell, W. A. Fiss, A. M. Crandall, J. I. Carson, J. M. Hinderman, Herman Schmechel, A. E. Fenske, August Paulson, August Sell, Albert G. Briese and John Durban, who elected the following officers: E. F. Sell, president; H. S. Comer, vice-president, and W. A. Fiss, cashier.

A new modern two-story bank building was erected, during the summer of 1910. The building is of brick with a granite front, the interior is finished with beamed ceiling and all interior finish is of quarter sawed oak. The fixtures are of Italian marble. The cost of the building is $12,000 and of the fixtures $3,000. The bank opened for actual business on October 1, 1910. The bank has continued under the same board of directors and officers until January 1, 1914, when H. S. Comer and August Paulson moved away and resigned. Otto W. Kiecker and August F. Rieke were elected to fill the vacancies. The same year there was also a change in officers, Albert G. Briese being elected vice-president in place of H. S. Comer. In January, 1915, after the death of E. F. Sell, another change was made and Mrs. E. F. Sell was elected to the board of directors in place of E. F. Sell, and she was also elected president of the bank. The present staff of officers are: Mrs. E. F. Sell, president; Albert G. Briese, vice-president; W. A. Fiss, cashier, and Harvey O. Fullerton, assistant cashier.

The First National Bank enjoyed a rapid growth from the beginning, and was able to pay a substantial dividend each year from the very start. Its resources are now over $200,000. The bank has thirty-six stockholders, all but a few of which live right in Fairfax and the adjoining community. It has not been the policy of the bank to pile up any enormous profits for the stockholders, but to conduct a conservative business which has for its goal the absolute safety of the depositor's money. The healthy rapid growth of the bank is an evidence of the confidence the community has in this its latest banking institution.

Following is a report of the condition of this bank at the close of business June 30, 1914: Resources - loans and discounts, $125,505.99; overdrafts, $802.30; bonds and securities, $26,242.19; banking house, furniture and fixtures, $15,172.08; due from banks, $30,513.22; cash on hand, $11,832.30; checks and cash items, $1,489.72; five per cent redemption fund, $1,250; total, $212,807.80. Liabilities - capital stock, $25,000; surplus fund, $5,000; undivided profits, net, $1,058.80; deposits subject to check, $49,996.11; cashier's checks, $565.86; savings deposits, $11.28; time certificates, $106,175.75; circulation, $25,000; total, $212,807.80.

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