History of First Columbia Bank & Trust Co.
Over 110 years ago, in 1899, life in Bloomsburg was quiet and centered on rural life. Still, Bloomsburg already was showing signs of the busy little town it would grow to be. The Bloomsburg State Normal School was well established, the Bloomsburg Fair had long since become a focal point on the annual calendar, and the silk, carpet and floral industries had taken root and flourished.
It was no wonder, then, that on April 8, 1899, five local businessmen petitioned the Comptroller of Currency in Washington, DC, to organize a new financial institution – the Bloomsburg National Bank. The new Bank opened for business in August 1899.
The Bank flourished during the first years and its capacity to serve customers was boosted in 1926 through a merger with Columbia County Trust Co., giving the institution the Bloomsburg Bank-Columbia Trust Company name that would stay with it until 1990, when expansion-minded directors chose the new name First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. Although the name changed, ownership did not, and the Bank has remained a locally owned and operated community bank.
At the opposite end of Columbia County, The Farmers National Bank of Orangeville was established in 1917. A third bank surfaced in Benton, known as Columbia County National Bank. The two banks merged in 1956 forming The Columbia County Farmers National Bank of Orangeville. By 1983 the name was changed to Columbia County Farmers National Bank (CCFNB), a primary competitor to Bloomsburg Bank – Columbia Trust Company.
As changes occurred in the landscape of Columbia County, both local banks began to branch out and expand their services into new communities. Bloomsburg Bank – Columbia Trust Company opened a sister office on Market Street in Bloomsburg in 1964. In 1967, branches were constructed in Catawissa and Scott Township, Bloomsburg.
CCFNB expanded in 1970 by adding their South Centre Office. The Main Office in Bloomsburg, located on East Street, was opened in 1985.
As both banks entered the next decade, changes were on the horizon. Bloomsburg Bank – Columbia Trust Company changed its name to First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. in 1990. This was followed by the addition of two branch locations in 1991 (Benton and Berwick). By 1998 another office was constructed at the entrance of the Columbia Mall in Buckhorn, bringing the total number of branch locations to seven. CCFNB established their Financial Planning Department, Lightstreet Office and Millville Office all in 1990.
As both banks entered the new millennium, they embraced changes in technology and product lines. Online Banking had become the wave of the future. Still growing, First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. opened a new office in Elysburg in 2004. In 2006 the bank acquired two Columbia County branches of Keystone Nazareth Bank & Trust (KNBT), further expanding their customer base.
In 2004, CCFNB opened a branch office inside the Wal-Mart® Supercenter. In 2006, CCFNB opened an office in Berwick, its eighth community location. By November 2007, both banks would sign an agreement to join forces in a merger of equals.
With the dawn of the new decade, First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. opened a new community banking location in Berwick at the site of the former Hotel Berwick. With its opening in January 2010, this branch became the second Berwick location to serve the community with full service banking.
In 2012, First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. opened two new offices. A new 2,990 square foot Catawissa office was constructed at 347 Main Street to replace First Columbia’s existing branch office in Catawissa. The second new office replaces First Columbia’s Bloomsburg/Market Street office; this office had extensive damage following the September 2011 flooding.
Today, First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. continues to meet the growing demands of the communities it serves. The Bank offers a full range of personal and business services including checking and savings accounts, Online Banking, CDs, IRAs, mortgages, commercial loans, home equity loans, Trust and Financial Services.
For over a century First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. has been committed to the vision of being an independent financial leader within all the communities it serves. First Columbia is excited about the many opportunities it has to serve customers in the future. First Columbia continues to evolve the bank to serve and meet all the needs of the community, the businesses, and the residents.
Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender.
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