Snapshot of History
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BY MIKE AVITT
This week’s photo was contributed by the Mount Ayr Public Library. I’m going to try and cover Mt. Ayr bank news in the 1980s in one article.
The Farm Crisis not only changed the financial landscape of Ringgold County, it also brought in new players. Production Credit Association moved to 122 W. Madison in January 1980. The Mount Ayr office closed in January 1985.
In January 1981, Security State Bank offered the first drive-up teller in the county. In June 1981, Tingley State Savings Bank opened a branch office at 100 E. South Street in Mt. Ayr.
This gave Mt. Ayr two banks for the first time since 1930. Two months later, First Federal Savings & Loan Association opened at 110 W. Madison with Barbara Walters as branch manager.
In October 1982, Norman and Doris Klejch opened Klejch Insurance at 118 S. Taylor. A year later, the firm moved to 120 S. Taylor.
Security State Bank underwent a major remodeling in 1983 and immediately after completion, the business was purchased and the name changed to Hawkeye Bank & Trust. Now, Hawkeye was the only bank with two drive-up tellers as Tingley State Savings Bank had one.
The big news of the decade came in early August 1984 when TSSB failed.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) protected the customers, but the stockholders lost all. Within days, the owner of Hawkeye Bank & Trust, Bancorporation, took over the firm and closed the Mount Ayr office, keeping the Tingley office open.
The former TSSB president, Carl Riggs, was made manager of the Tingley office in September 1984.
More big news in 1985. First State Bank of Diagonal and Shannon City, applied to move its main office from Diagonal to the former TSSB office at 100 E. South Street in Mount Ayr.
The move was approved and the main office of First State Bank moved to Mount Ayr in October 1985. Now, 100 E. South St. had its second bank with the branches at Diagonal and Shannon City staying open. At this time, First State Bank had assets of $6.8 million dollars.
At the end of 1986, Helen Schardein retired from French & Schardein. Helen had joined the business in 1945. The firm would now be known as William H. French Agency and still is today. Bill French’s daughter, Amy Still, joined the agency in January 1987.
In 1986, Bob Roe bought Hawkeye Insurance Services, which was operated out of Hawkeye Bank & Trust at 101 S. Fillmore. In August 1987, he moved his office to 113 S. Fillmore, the current location of Tyler Insurance. More next week.