So what?!? So we’ve been around for a long time. Does THAT make us better by itself? NO. BUT, our combination of a tradition-based philosophy on what true community banking is all about, coupled with our ability to embrace modern technologies and methodologies If they improve life for our customers is a definite slam-dunk against our competition.
What else happened in 1903?
Following is an alphabetical listing of those names that were referenced in our records, and where possible, it lists the years of service of that individual. We apologize if there are omissions from this list, and anyone with additional or corrected information is encouraged to contact us.
Tom Barker: Courier – 01/80-12/80
Imogene (Ormond) Barry: Teller & Secretary – 1952-1958
Patricia C. Barry: Facilities Care – 03/85-Present
James Betzelos: Director – 1972-1973
Kathy Bockhold: Teller – 02/82-08/82
M.W. Callahan: President & Chairman – 1903-1919
Carrie E. Clary: Asst Cashier – 1913-1915
Gertrude Clary: Asst Cashier – 1915-????
Andrew Collins: Director – 02/75-06/76
Anthony P. Costa: Director – 03/72-05/72
Melissa Coultas: Customer Service (Barry) – 1995-present
Leesa Crawford: Customer Service – 1995-1997
Charles Daily: Cashier – 1946-1947
George C. Dean: Director – 1903-1951, Vice Pres – 1912-1927, President – 1927-1951
Dorothy D. Decker: Customer Service – 09/13/82-Present
John P. Deege: General Counsel – circa 1960’s
Sylviere “Desi” DeSutter: Director – 1985-1987
Joyce K. Donley: Customer Service – 1988-1990
Gary N. Edwards: Director – 1989-
Russell Ellwood: Director – 1976-1977
A. Kim Emery: 11/16/73-7/30/76 and 07/79-12/90
Raymond Fencl: Director – 02/75-07-75
Diana Fesler: Customer Service (Barry) – 03/95-present
Pam Fessler: Teller/Bookkeeper – 11/78-04/84
Eleanore R. Field: Director – 1984-1988
Mark G. Field: Loan Officer – 05/85-01/87, Asst Vice Pres – 01/87-01/88, Vice President – 01/88-03/90, Director – 05/88-Present, President – 03/90-Present, Chairman – 06/95-Present
Mary N. Field: Teller/Bookkeeper 1984-1991, Asst Cashier 1991-Present
Robert R. Field: Director – 1984-1995, President – 1984-1990, Chairman – 1985-1995
W.J. Franks: Director – 1906-1910
Walter D. Frey: Director – 1920-1955, Vice Pres – 1951-1955
Margaret Gay: Teller – 1920-1921, Asst Cashier – 1921-????
Floyd H. “Fritz” Graff: Courier – 08/81-Present
Lawrence Graff: circa 1961
M.E. Graff: Asst Cashier of “Beverly Bank” in 1916
Mary C. Grubb: Asst Cashier – 1912-????
Alvin Hartshorn: Vice Pres – 1906-1919, Director – 1914-1927, President – 1919-1927
George A. Hendricks: Cashier of “Beverly Bank” in 1916
Mildred “Sis” Heine: Teller – circa 1970 and 07/74-12/77
Rose E. “Emma” Heine: Teller/Bookkeeper – 1958, Asst Cashier, Cashier, Asst VP/Cashier – 1978-1980, Vice Pres – 1980-1981
Hez G. Henry: Director – 1903-1929
Mattie F. Henry: Director – 1903-1914
Terry Hester: Asst Vice Pres – 01/75-09/75
C. Lynn Hill: Teller/Bookkeeper – 1981-1988, Asst Cashier – 1988-Present
John Hofmeister: Director – 1965-1972
Milton H. Hofmeister: Director – 1929-1964, Vice Pres – 1955-1964
Gary L. Hubbs: Loan Officer 1984-1985
James F. Hughes: Director – 1903-1920, 2nd Vice Pres – 1919-1920
William Jacobsen: Director – 03/72-05/72
Karen Kelly (later Martin): Teller – circa 1965
Marion F. Kelly: Director – 02/75-06/76
Barb (Kroencke) Kestner: Teller – 01/74-09/74
Jesse Kline: Asst Cashier – 1923-1929 Cashier – 1929-1946, Director – 1930-1948
Julius Kline: Director – 1920-1948, Vice Pres – 1927-1947
Dennis A. Klingele: Loan Officer – 1991-1993
Jeff Kroeger: Loan Officer – 1982
Cheryl Kroencke: circa 1973-1977
Anna (Schmiedeskamp) Lawless: Assistant Cashier – 1906-1920, Director – 1910-1930, Cashier – 1920-1929
Steven G. Lawless: Asst Cashier – 1909-1912, Cashier – 1912-1920
Mary Kay Leapley: Customer Service/Bookkeeper – 1984-Present
C. Merle Lierle: Director – 1970-1972
Clifford E. Lierle: Director – 1955-1969
Amos J. Linn: Vice Pres – 1903-1906
Earl Longlett: Asst Cashier – 1929-1946
John H. Longlett: Director – 1929-1954
John R. Longlett: General Counsel – 1975-Present, Director – 1981-1990
Nola Longlett: circa 1965
Raymond Longlett: Director – 1955-1972, Asst Cashier – 1958-1959, Cashier – 1959-1972
Julius J. “J.J.” Lurkins: Director – 1976-1988
John R. Matlick: Director – 1987-Present
Dale Mavis: Director – 1980-1984
Carl McMahon: Director – 1948-1972, 2nd VP – 1959-1972
Sondra Meginnes: Facilities Care – 07/79-05/82
George D. Mercer: Cashier & Board Secretary – 1903-1912
Dr. William E. Mercer: Director – 1920-1926
Wenona Merideth: Mgr – Customer Accounting – 1968-1974, Asst Cashier – 1974-1980,
Asst VP/Cashier – 1980-1987, VP/Cashier – 1987-1988
Kathy Muder: Facilities Care – 06/82-03/85
Donald D. Mulch: Asst Cashier – 1946-1953
Kathy Newman: Customer Service (Barry) – 1998-Present
Susan Nickell: Teller/Bookkeeper – 05/77-12/78
L. Andrew Nickelson: Director – 1981-1985
Maxine Owen: circa 1965
Vicky Parn: Facilities Care – 08/75-07/79
Paul A. Pogue: Loan Officer – 11/75-02/76, Asst Vice Pres – 02/76-12/76,
Vice President – 12/76-01/80, Exec Vice Pres – 01/80-06/81, Director – 01/80-02/84
President – 06/81-02/84
Phyllis Pogue: Receptionist/Loan Clerk – 03/79/03/84
Edward W. Pond: Director 1920-1947
George B. Poulos: Director & President – 1972-1975
Joseph D. Quinn: Director – 1991-Present
Donald Robinson: Director – 1977-1984
Edward Rietz, Jr.: Director – 1973-1974
Donald D. Rumley: Director – 1976-1981
Ronald A. Sablick: Chairman – 1972-1975, President – 03/72-05/72
Mary T. Sablick: Director – 03/72-05/72
John B. Sanders: Loan Officer – 1970-1972, Director – 1972-1975, Cashier – 1972-1973, Vice Pres – 1973-1974, Exec Vice Pres – 07/74-11/74
Jon Schaffer: Vice Pres – 1983-1984
Kurt Schaffer: Director – 06/76-01/89, Chairman – 06/76-01/85, President – 06/76-06/81
Marthe Ann Schaffer: Director – 06/76-07/84
Shela Schmidt: Bookkeeper (part time) 1990-1991
Carl Schmiedeskamp: General Counsel 1922-????
H.E. Schmiedeskamp: General Counsel 1903-????
Lydia Schmiedeskamp: Bookkeeper – 1903-????
Leo C. “Carl” Schneider: Director – 1978-1987
Scott J. Schoonover: Loan Officer – 08/93-12/97, Vice President – 12/97-Present
Hans Schulze: Director – 07/75-06/76
Margaret Scrogum: circa 1967
Jan Siebers: Teller – 08/74-05/75
Daphne L. Simon: Customer Service – 1991-Present
Earl R. Sims: Cashier 1947-1959, President 1962-1972
S. Dean Sims: Director 1965-1972
Seldon O. Slade: Director – 1903-1906
Michael J. Still: Director – 1987-1989
James Symmonds: Asst Cashier – 1920-????
Larry H. Talken: Director – 1991-Present
Elvin W. Tappe: Director – 1988-Present
Gary L. Tenhouse: Director – 1976-1977
Donna Tenhouse: Teller/Bookkeeper – 1972-1973, Asst Cashier – 1973-1974, Asst Vice Pres – 07/74-11/74, Vice Pres & Director – 1974-1977
Earl Tenhouse: Director – 1957-1965
Edward Tenhouse: Director – 1927-1957
Lenore Tenhouse: circa 1960
Ed Tetrault: Exec Vice Pres – 03/75-06/76?
Frank D. Thomas: Director – 1903-1929
Mark Thompson: Loan Representative (Barry)- 1995-present
Henry Vollmer: Director – 1926-1972, Vice Pres – 1947-1951, 1962-1972, President – 1951-1962
Ruth J. Walker: Teller – 1953-1959, Asst Cashier – 1959-1970
Charles Whitney: Director – 1976-1981
Ann (Rossmiller) Wiewel: Teller – 09/74-09/75 and 12/75-01/76
Virginia Wilkey: Facilities Care – to 1975
Jane E. Windoffer: Teller/Bookkeeper 1977-1980, Asst Cashier 1980-1988,
Cashier 1988-1992, Vice Pres/Cashier 1992-Present
Nancy Zehnle: Loan Clerk – 07/78-12/78
A meeting was held on June 23, 1903 on the first floor of the Masonic Hall in Liberty, which still stands today. The topic of discussion: The community’s need for a bank. The new bank would commence operations from the very site of that first meeting – the Masonic Hall.
The first directors and officers were elected:
DIRECTORS: M.W. Callahan, Chairman Hez G. Henry Mrs. Mattie F. Henry Frank D. Thomas The Honorable Geo. C. Dean Seldon O. Slade James. F. Hughes
OFFICERS: M.W. Callahan, President Amos J. Linn, Vice President George D. Mercer, Cashier Lydia Schmiedeskamp, Bookkeeper
H.E. Schmiedeskamp was named general counsel
The bank was originally established as The Farmers STATE Bank of Liberty, a name many people mistakenly use today, but on July 5, 1904, the Farmers STATE Bank was technically closed, with the charter being surrendered to the state, and the depositors were PAID OFF IN FULL. However, that same day, the directors and officers established a private bank, a “co-partnership” called The Farmers Bank of Liberty, which resumed operations without any interruptions in service to the community. Records indicate that the bank had $49,356.95 in loans outstanding at this time. The bank’s letterhead at the time read “$1.50 will rent a safe deposit box for one year”.
Following is a timeline of excerpts from the official minutes of the meetings of the Board of Directors of The Farmers Bank of Liberty, which are still intact in their entirety. We wanted to share some of the highlights with you to show how the bank and its surrounding community have grown together through the past 90 years.
06/23/03 First meeting of stockholders held, Farmers STATE Bank organized. Soon open for business in Masonic Hall in Liberty.
07/05/04 Charter surrendered, The Farmers Bank of Liberty, a co-partnership formed. The word STATE stricken from the bank’s name in official By-Laws and other records.
07/01/05 Bank reports a net profit of $189.97.
03/??/13 Board authorized plans for new building to house bank operations, with provisions for community hall above, later called the “Opera House”. $800 allocated to purchase the “N.E. corner of the Austin Lot”.
07/01/13 $8000 allocated to erect building. Money raised by assessing current “stockholders” for an increase in their investment by the same amount. New partnership agreement drafted.
01/22/14 Authorized purchase of new fixtures at a cost of $447.
12/22/14 Bank Cashier Stephen G. Lawless and a Dr. Lierly employed the L.H. Richardson Co. to survey a direct route from Liberty to Quincy for an “auto interurban”. “This would be graded the same as for a rail track, surfaced with concrete, but there would be no rails. Motor cars and coaches would probably have wheels with rubber tires.”
07/06/15 A committee of the board was appointed to “investigate an electric light plant” for the village.
07/01/16 The minutes show: “After the inquiry of Mr. Sykes it was made known that the Beverly Bank was under the supervision of The Farmers Bank of Liberty, Ill.” At the time, the Beverly Bank was showing resources of $15,022.71. A committee of three was appointed to “arrange and build a building for the Beverly Branch Bank of Liberty” (later still referred to as “The Beverly Bank”)
07/03/17 A committee of three was appointed to set up a $10,000 stock subscription for “The State Bank of Beverly”, which at the time showed total resources of $28,781.50, compared to Liberty’s $284,664.35.
07/02/18 A motion to forego declaring a dividend “because of war” was defeated.
03/23/20 Cashier Steven Lawless shot while clerking an auction in the area, he dies one week later.
07/01/20 Approved motion to arrange for incorporation.
07/06/20 A committee consisting of Hez Henry, Frank Thomas, George Dean, Alvin Hartshorn, and Anna Lawless authorized to secure permission to incorporate for $30,000 and to place the stock. Motion to appraise the property of the “old bank” was approved as was a motion that the name of the “new bank” be The Farmers Bank of Liberty.
07/16/20 Incorporation completed.
09/06/21 Authorized to rent office space to the Liberty Farmers Telephone Company for $100 per year, “including heat and light”.
04/04/22 A $5000 loan was approved for the incorporation of Liberty Motor Co., L.B. Hessert.
11/08/22 Two weeks of vacation with pay was approved for each employee.
08/06/23 The cashier was instructed “to place as many of the mortgages in the Farm loan bank as possible”.
10/07/24 A $500 “donation” was authorized towards a power line to be built from Payson to Liberty.
11/06/24 Motion passed to close the bank each day from 12:00 noon to 12:45 p.m.
06/02/25 A motion was passed to “buy coal for bank from Beringer Bros. at 25 cents per bushel delivered to the cellar”.
08/06/26 A resolution was adopted asking for priority in construction of Route 105 (now Route 104).
11/01/27 The Chief Examiner requested that the bank’s employees be bonded.
12/04/28 Bank authorized to sign a three-year membership in the Farm Bureau of Adams County.
05/09/29 Bank authorized to participate in the Adams County Bankers Federation.
10/07/30 The Bank’s “Road Committee” sends a letter to “Mr. Cleveland of the State Department, thanking him for the complete construction of Route 105 (now 104) this year.”
01/06/31 Representatives from the board sent to a meeting for establishing an “intermediate credit bank” in the county. Meeting was held at Farm Bureau offices.
12/28/32 The minutes reflect that the bank had some farmland under ownership, and they agreed “to sell corn for 18 cents at the crib, or 20 cents delivered”.
03/13/33 A telegram was sent to Edward J. Barrett, State Auditor “for application to open our bank at the earliest possible date”. It is assumed that the bank, like all others was temporarily closed to prevent a bank “run” at this time of President Roosevelt’s declared “Bank Holiday”. Application was also being made at this time for membership in the Federal Reserve System.
10/03/33 A motion was made to accept Home Owners Loan Corp. bonds in exchange for mortgages “where possible or requested.”
11/07/33 Board requested that application be made “for membership in the Temporary Federal Deposit Insurance Fund in accordance with the provisions of the Banking Act of 1933 (the Glass-Steagal Act) and regulations of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.” Also mentioned at this meeting was a motion to purchase a Diebold Safe for $75 and a time-delayed lock control for the safe at a cost of $90.
12/02/33 The directorship assessed themselves $5000 “to maintain solvency”.
02/20/34 Management was asked to “send instructions to our State representatives and senator to use their efforts in defeating Senate Bills 20 and 21, and House Bills 11 and 30”.
03/06/34 The Board authorized the exchange of mortgages for Federal Land Bank bonds or Home Owners Loan Corp. Bonds.
09/24/34 Officers agree to take a 5% reduction in salary for the year, providing the net profits of the bank did not exceed $500.
05/28/35 Authorization was received to “assign U.S. Bonds” (sell savings bonds).
06/25/35 The board authorized a stock purchase in the FDIC.
01/07/36 A motion passed to rent the “Dentist’s Office” to Dr. Davidson for present rate of $3.00 per month, reserving Mondays for the Dentist.
11/02/37 An itemized list of the expenses of the month totalling $293.25 was read.
12/07/37 A motion was made to pay 1% on time deposits.
10/04/38 A motion on a request to “turn part of the Bee office into a sleeping room” was denied.
11/01/38 The Board authorized the signing of a right-of-way easement for the Rural Electrification Corp.
07/11/39 A motion was made to “carry anticipation warrants on (lend money to) Liberty, Burton, Beverly and Richfield townships during the coming year”.
11/07/39 A motion passed “to purchase $1800 par value Liberty School District #204 school bonds 4-1/4% with maturities starting December, 1940 and each December thereafter”.
12/12/39 FDIC Examiner C.W. Lee requested the bank charge off the sum of $1999.74 on notes “that he designated”.
04/02/40 Moved to purchase $2800 par value of Beverly 4% school bonds.
01/07/41 Salary of Cashier set at $160 per month, Assistant Cashier at $100 per month.
06/03/41 Public Liability insurance first taken out on the bank building.
11/10/42 A used “posting machine” was purchased from the Neat, Condit and Grout National Bank in Winchester, Ill.
06/01/43 The board approved the “war loan account resolution” with the Federal Reserve Bank.
01/03/44 A letter from the Liberty Telephone Exchange was read which thanked the bank for building a sidewalk and entrance at the South side of the bank building.
06/06/44 The “War Loan Account” with the Federal Reserve Bank was increased to $75,000.
01/02/45 The rate on savings accounts was changed to 1/2%, effective February 1st.
10/29/46 After an examination by the FDIC, the examiners met with the board and stated that in their opinion the bank was in excellent condition and no discussion of loans was necessary.
02/08/49 A committee was appointed to “find out about details of Nationalizing the bank”, in other words, applying for a federal charter, rather than the state charter currently in effect.
08/06/49 At the annual stockholders meeting, bank attorney Henry Schmiedeskamp gave a short speech on the history of The Farmers Bank of Liberty.
05/02/50 A $10 ad space was purchased in the new plat book being put out by the Rural Youth of Adams County.
06/06/50 Moved “to rent, for the sum of $5.00 for one night or the sum of $9.50 for two nights per week to Picture Show Operator, the Opera House.”
10/03/50 Safety precautions for the employees was discussed concerning the possibility of them being locked in the vault. Also, the Lion’s Club offered to fix up the chairs in the “Opera House”.
11/06/50 500 pamphlets were ordered to explain the increase in FDIC coverage from $5000 to $10,000.
01/02/51 Each employee was to receive $10 for a Christmas bonus.
08/06/52 “The directors of The Farmers Bank of Liberty have decided to put a buzzer in the vault which will ring at the telephone office in case that is needed”.
09/07/54 A loan was approved to start up a stockyard in Coatsburg.
08/06/55 Moved to purchase a one-ton air-conditioning unit from Buskirk Hardware.
12/06/55 The U.S. Air Force contacted the bank to request to place a lookout tower on top of the bank building “to watch for planes”. Motion was tabled.
05/31/56 A special meeting of the board was held to discuss the purchase of a F211 Bank Sensimatic Posting Machine, Stand Style 91A, costing $3216.59 including tax.
09/04/56 Bank purchased a steer at the Junior Livestock Sale at Mendon to be sold at a profit for the 4-H club.
01/08/57 The rent was set at $50 per month including utilities for William Hartsfield, Liberty Bee.
10/08/58 A motion was made “to install stool and proper fittings and drain for bank’s use”. (Note: restroom for other building tenants was not installed until after 5/03/60)
08/06/60 The annual stockholders meeting included a dinner at the Legion Hall, hosted by the Legion Auxiliary.
04/03/61 The bank goes “on record as being opposed to branch-banking”.
04/02/63 Moved to purchase the “Ora Diehl home behind the bank building” for $2500.
05/04/63 A night depository was “to be investigated further”, and TV ads were placed.
09/03/63 Interest payments on certificates were changed from annual to semi-annual.
01/04/66 The board approved the purchase of a night depository at a cost of $1350.
02/07/66 Workers Comp. Insurance was taken out at a cost of $77 FOR THREE YEARS.
04/05/67 Authorized a pledge to the Blessing Hospital Building Fund.
06/18/68 Authorized purchase of a Recordak microfilm camera “with proper equipment”.
06/03/69 An interest-free loan was made to the Township to build restrooms in the park.
10/06/70 The board requested to obtain estimates on installation of a burglar-alarm system.
01/05/71 Hours set at Monday-Friday 9-2:30 reopen Fridays 4-6:30
02/17/72 Special stockholders’ meeting held. Decision to sell bank stock to Ronald A. Sablick of Olympia Fields, IL.
03/16/72 Bank closes at 11:00 a.m. to mourn the loss of Cashier Raymond Longlett.
05/16/72 New board explores possibilities of moving bank to a new location.
08/02/72 Motion approved to move the banking house from corner of Main and Hannibal Streets to the corner of Main St. and Liberty Road (now Lierle St.).
09/30/72 Total resources of bank now exceed $3,000,000.
10/27/72 Board becomes “more stringent” on overdrafts, with total being less than $100.
11/15/72 Board first approves Bank offering a “Christmas Club Account”.
02/12/73 Target date for new building to be open.
07/08/74 It was reported to the board that “operations of the bank had been put into Data Processing, except for Demand Deposits which will be on by the end of 1974”.
06/30/76 Controlling interest purchased by Kurt Schaffer.
08/31/76 Board approves sale of former bank building to Mr. & Mrs. Edward Clark.
10/29/76 Bank’s fiscal year changed from 6/30 to 12/31.
07/14/77 First discussions held on bank being open on Saturday mornings.
01/12/78 The minutes reflect that “the Farmers Bank of Liberty is the only fully-computerized bank in the entire area” and monies were allocated for the purchase of a new “proof machine” and teller machines. Also, the Garden Club donated a flag and pole to the bank.
03/08/79 Plans are reviewed for bank building expansion. A conference room, lunch room and one office would be added.
05/30/80 “A masked man entered bank with a drawn gun” and robbed it. John Larry Ray arrested shortly thereafter, and much of the money is recovered.
11/13/80 The board authorizes the addition of Negotiable Order of Withdrawal (NOW) Accounts to the line-up of quality services available.
05/14/81 A discussion was held to consider going “in-house” with the bank’s computing needs.
07/09/81 Bank purchases computer system for $43,000 which is to be operational by October 1st.
10/08/81 A resolution is drafted endorsing the completion of the Central Illinois Expressway (CIE).
05/03/84 Control of bank turned over to Robert Field. Field named President and Vice-Chairman.
05/19/85 Mark Field joins his father on staff as Loan Officer.
05/19/85 First personal computer put into service, being used for word processing and spreadsheets.
08/08/85 Board authorizes investment in common stock of the Independent Bankers Bank of Illinois in Springfield.
03/13/86 Reported to board that the computer system had been expanded to include the “proofing” function, and management disposed of the proof machine.
7/14/88 Motion accepted to construct storage facility on bank property.
04/12/90 Board authorized construction of new roof for building.
09/04/90 A FAX machine is installed for facsimile transmissions over the phone lines.
1991 New sign constructed using bell that reportedly came from the “Prairie School” schoolhouse near the airport.
01/21/92 Bank installs computer-based connection with the Federal Reserve Bank to process automated clearing house (ACH) items electronically.
02/16/93 Computer link established to receive all “in-clearings” (checks submitted by the Federal Reserve for payment) electronically.
06/23/93 Bank hosts community picnic to thank area folks for making the first 90 years in business a success!
07/12/93 Letter of resignation received from Loan Officer Dennis Klingele, who is relocating to Jacksonville. His replacement will be Scott Schoonover, a local businessman. Mr. Schoonover brings several years of practical business experience to the position. He will join the staff on 8/2/93.
Board discussed implementation of Shazam ATM and debit cards.
09/13/93 It was reported that the Liberty School will be constructing a new Media Center and high school computer lab.
10/04/93 Introduction of Freedom 50 and Freedon 50+ accounts discussed, plus the addition of an automatic coin sorter/counter for handling bulk coin deposits, and a second drive-up lane to handle the increasing traffic.
11/02/93 FFA Project Loan program announced.
05/05/94 Membership in the Federal Home Loan Bank system is approved and the stock purchase authorized.
07/11/94 Lobby hours expanded to 4:30 p.m. Mon-Wed, and will stay open continuously from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Fridays.
08/15/94 Agreements were signed on August 3rd to join the Shazam ATM network and issue cards to account holders.
09/12/94 Board discusses offering credit cards through an “agent” program.
02/13/95 President Field informed the board that he had purchased a prime piece of real estate in Barry in mid-December, and has since been contacted by a number of prominent citizens in that area encouraging him to establish a branch there. It seems that the bank now in Barry does not offer such basic conveniences as a drive-up window, night depository, or extended hours. The lot is located at a high-traffic intersection near the Central Illinois Expressway, next to a truck stop and Wendy’s restaurant which are both now under construction.
03/13/95 A resolution was adopted to seek regulatory approval to establish a branch facility in Barry at the corner of Highway 106 and County Road 1750E
Motion made to establish credit card program.
04/06/95 Open house scheduled for April 28th for Dorothy Decker, who is retiring from the customer service area.
04/17/95 Groundbreaking held in Barry for new facility, with Mayor Ed Venicombe. ATM for new facility is ordered.
06/12/95 Board Chairman Robert Field resigns after 11 years of service to the bank. Mark Field elected as Chairman of the Board, after purchasing remaining shares of stock from his father.
08/02/95 Barry Community Banking Center opens for business.
10/07/95 Grand Opening/Open House held at Barry.
01/05/96 Approved purchase of Unix-based Server and Optical Storage Drive for bank’s main .
03/14/96 The bank will be one of the first in the area to have a “home page” on the internet, through a program with the Community Bankers Association. Both communities (Liberty and Barry) will be prominently featured.
04/10/96 A donation was made to the Liberty Volunteer Ambulance for heart defibrillators.
07/08/96 An investment of up to $25,000.00 was authorized for the Pike County Community Development Corporation.
Bank lobby to be open Saturday mornings from 9-12 noon.
08/12/96 It was announced that Chairman Field was serving as President of the Rural Adams Development Corporation, and will be installed next month as Treasurer of the Community Bankers Association of Illinois.
09/09/96 ATM Card program expanded to include MasterCard Debit Cards, or “Shazamchek” cards.
10/07/96 The board authorized an additional investment in the Rural Adams Development Corporation, nearly doubling the amount invested in the RADC’s revolving loan fund. The program has been very successful.
02/10/97 Board authorizes the installation of the “Voice-Response-Unit” (later to be named “Libby”), a touch-tone telephone banking system that will be available to customers free of charge. It will include a “fax-back” feature so customers can have cut-off statements faxed to them at any time.
04/14/97 Debbie Main, from Liberty High School, will be presented a $1000.00 check from the CBAI Scholarship Contest, in addition to the local prize money.
06/20/97 The board discussed the need for space at the Liberty facility. Space is needed for additional offices, as well as room for the computer and operations areas. A storage room would be considered, as well as an enlarged conference/board room and expanded employee lounge facility. No floor plans or cost etimates have been sought as of yet.
10/13/97 Board pledges $5,000 for the CBAI Foundation to endow the scholarship program on into the future.
11/10/97 Web-Site with Live internet demonstrations in the lobbies at both Barry and Liberty are planned.
Y2K (Year 2000) Computer testing completed by Computer Hardware and Software Vendors. All systems proved compliant.
Quincy ATM and “image” statements for checking discussed.
Plans begin for Bank’s 95th Anniversary Celebration
New computerized Bond Accounting System in place through broker.
Additional lock-boxes are ordered and plans to remodel vault interior are made.
02/10/98 Announcement that meeting is scheduled with Town & Country Bank of Quincy, regarding branch in Payson for possible acquisition by FBL.
04/14/98 “Year 2000 Plan” adopted by Board.
05/12/98 Board adopts resolution to authorize bank management to complete necessary forms for “Application for a Merger or Other Transaction Pursuant to Section 18(C) of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act” to pursue the purchase of the Payson branch of Town & Country Bank of Quincy.
The bank is co-sponsoring a golf tournament for the benefit of the Liberty Education Foundation on June 18th at Camp Point. All directors plan to participate.
06/16/98 Customer Appreciation Days scheduled for Barry on June 17th and in Liberty on June 26th to commemorate bank’s 95th Anniversary. Food, refreshments and door prizes planned.
The chairman outlined additional discussions held with officials from Town & Country Bank of Quincy, regarding the Payson branch office. The formal agreement between the banks was executed as of June 10th, and the formal application packet was sent to both the FDIC and the State earlier this week. The desired time frame, as stated within the application, calls for obtaining approval before the end of July, with a “closing” at the end of the business day on August 31st. We would then be in full possession and control of the Payson facility on September 1st. Customer Service Rep. Daphne Simon is already working in Payson to get acquainted with customers there in anticipation of receiving the necessary approvals. Management is considering moving Loan Rep. Thompson to Payson, and replacing him with another full-time lending person for the Barry Community Banking Center.
07/09/98 Deposits for the Barry Banking Center stood at $2,915,037.47 (comprised of 645 deposit accounts and 174 cd’s) and loans amounted to $2,040,832.38 (110 commercial and real estate loans and 163 installment loans) for a branch loan-to-deposit ratio of 70%.
08/05/98 Chairman Field was recently featured by the Northwestern Financial Review Magazine as being the “Rising Star” young banker from the State of Illinois. Follow-up articles appeared in most area newspapers. The chairman also taped a half-hour “Corporate Profiles” show for Media One Cablevision in Quincy. The discussion covered the Rural Adams Development Corporation and community banking in general, and will run throughout the month of August.
The equipment for the second drive-up lane was installed at the Barry Banking Center recently. At peak periods, the lines were long enough to justify the additional investment to keep customer service flowing smoothly.
09/16/98 FDIC approval of the Payson branch acquisition was received shortly after last meeting, and a closing date as of the close of business on September 30th was agreed upon by both banks. Management is busy making arrangements for data lines, computers and supplies to equip the branch before that date.
10/13/98 A moment of silent prayer was held for Director Elvin Tappe, whom God called to His presence on October 10th.
12/08/98 Y2K Testing completed on-site, with all systems passing the test.
01/12/99 The bank is sponsoring an ad in area newspapers focusing on our Y2K preparedness, in an effort to ease customers’ fears. The print ad will be reproduced as a flyer and will be mailed to all customers later in the year.
The bank’s agent for the group health insurance informed the chairman that premiums would be increasing by 42% for the new year.
Board begins to look at SIMPLE retirement plan for employees, among other options.
02/04/99 A brief tour of the Payson Community Banking Center followed. All equipment other than a desk for Loan Officer Thompson is in place at the present time. Management was commended on the remodeling efforts, as the end product is a professional and functional banking facility for the Payson community.
03/09/99 Deposits for the Payson Banking Center have risen by 74% since the bank acquired that facility October 1st.
04/13/99 A grand opening has been set for the Payson Community Banking Center on May 15th from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Direct mail is being used to invite several prospective customers, while newspaper ads and flyers are being utilized to invite the general public. All staff and directors are invited to participate. A tent will be set up with tables and chairs for dining purposes. The Adams County Pork Producers will be serving pork chop sandwiches, chips, soda, hot dogs, etc. Bank hats, coffee mugs, coin purses, key rings, and other premiums will be used as door prizes for those in attendance
Chairman Field has been appointed to serve on the Marketing Committee of the Independent Community Bankers of America, and will be attending committee meetings and legislative sessions in Washington, DC in May. This is in addition to the many positions he holds with the statewide Community Bankers Association of Illinois. Vice President Schoonover is currently president of the Pike County Community Development Corporation, in addition to being a board member of the Great River Economic Development Foundation, which covers all of Adams County. This together with the chairman’s continued involvement in the Rural Adams Development Corporation ensures that the community’s credit needs are being readily assessed and satisfied at all three banking locations.
06/07/99 Management was authorized to purchase an in-store ATM and to negotiate with the Quik Pik Texaco convenience store at 36th and Broadway Streets in Quincy for placement there.
09/14/99 A discussion followed concerning the agricultural economy in general, and the bank’s current portfolio exposure. Management is comfortable that exposure to losses is relatively small, as most of the farm operators have non-farm income to subsidize their farms, in addition to having non-farm income from their spouses working as well.
12/08/99 A special resolution was passed to commemorate the many years of service provided to the bank by long-time courier Floyd H. “Fritz” Graff, whom the Lord called to His presence earlier this year. A copy of the resolution will be presented to his wife, Vonnie, at the staff Christmas party this weekend.
01/11/00 The chairman indicated that the bank’s efforts in promoting Y2K readiness had paid off. There was no discernible change in customers’ cash usage throughout the end of the year, and 100% of the bank’s systems worked with no further modification after midnight on New Year’s Eve. The chairman thanked Asst. Cash. Mary Field, and Admin. Asst. Betsy VanDeVelde for their efforts in assisting with the late-night testing.
02/15/00 FBL to be the lead bank for a consortium of Rural Adams County banks for funding a loan for a spec building for the airport property.
The bank donated $500 towards the reward fund established by the Liberty Education Foundation for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever was responsible for recent bomb threats at the school
The bank’s website is being expanded to include on-line application forms for loans, deposit accounts and CD’s, in addition to more emphasis being placed on available services at the opening screen.
03/14/00 Chairman Field had contacted School Superintendent Steve Graham, and offered on behalf of the bank to supply an oversized flag for the new gymnasium. Ideally, an electric winch mechanism would be installed to lower the large flag from the ceiling while the national anthem is played for sporting events, and it would then be raised back into the peak of the ceiling for normal storage and would still be visible.
Chairman Field has been appointed by Illinois Governor George Ryan to a position on the Board of Trustees for the Illinois Bank Examiners Education Foundation. He was appointed to the State Banking Board in 1997.
04/11/00 Director Schoonover has been involved in the formation of a new economic development foundation for Pike County, and the bank will become a founding member
05/09/00 Vice President Schoonover was recently named “Young Banker of the Year” by the Community Bankers Association.
08/23/00 The Community Bankers Association of Illinois (CBAI) convention is scheduled for September 13-17 in Lake Geneva, where Chairman Field will be installed as President of the state association.
10/10/00 Board first considers “Bounce-Free Checking” program.
11/14/00 More detail was provided about the motorized flag display system donated to the new Liberty High School Gymnasium. The flag will be highlighted at the school’s upcoming “Red & White Night” on November 18th.
Thrifty Checking and Bounce-Free OD Privilege to be launched early next year.
Staff will begin to draw preliminary plans for a building addition and remodeling of the current structure at Liberty. Space is in dire need for virtually all operational areas of the bank. Actual construction may be delayed until early 2002.
03/13/01 An increase in deposits is being seen currently, which is partially reflective of a “flight to safety” of depositor’s funds out of the stock market, due to poor performance. General market conditions and interest rate expectations were discussed.
Some building expansion ideas were briefly reviewed. An architect will likely be needed, due to the scope of the project, and management will first sketch out some current space needs, and leave ample room for expansion as well. While no specific time frame was offered, it is generally anticipated that plans will begin to be formulated later this year, with construction beginning in mid to late 2002, and completion no later than the bank’s 100th anniversary in June of 2003. Space is desperately needed at the main office at this point.
04/17/01 A survey is being developed to poll the bank’s current customers about their financial needs and wants. It will include a $1 bill for the customer’s efforts, along with a stamped self-addressed bank-by-mail envelope. Results will be shared with the board as soon as they are available. The questionnaire will also include questions pertaining to the credit needs of the Community for CRA purposes.
05/15/01 Winners of the bank’s local scholarship contest will be awarded their prizes at the Graduation ceremony on May 27th. Rebecca Lohnes, from Barry, won the Group 7 prize of $1000.00 in addition to a local prize
06/11/01 The bank purchased $200,000 of “working cash” bonds issued by the Payson School District, through broker Griffen, Kubik, Stephens & Thompson.
07/17/01 The bank will be participating in the “Image-PLUS” program with WGEM-TV, where the bank can utilize TV ads at a substantial discount, and the ad is guaranteed a certain percentage of prime-time runs, along with being used as “filler” for unsold airtime as well.
09/11/01 Shortly after the meeting began, news reached the bank that three commercial airliners had been hijacked by terrorists and had flown into the World Trade Center in New York, and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.
10/10/01 The building project was discussed. The chairman had met with customer Frank Sakulenzki to review the preliminary plans, and Mr. Sakulenzki showed great interest in being the general contractor on the project. He has ongoing relationships with many of the subcontractors that would need to be involved in a project of this scope. Chairman Field requested that the feasibility of using the new styrofoam “ice-block” concrete form system for the exterior walls be analyzed. Savings on construction costs, labor and ongoing energy savings all seem attractive. The latest draft of the floor plan and exterior elevations were reviewed.
11/13/01 Chairman Field has been asked to serve on a steering committee to put together a series of meetings to promote economic development in the Payson School District. The Bank-At-School program will be implemented at Liberty Grade School and Customer Service Rep. Daphne Simon will be the coordinator.
The chairman had received an official notice from the Postal Service that the bank’s physical address in Liberty has been changed to 1002 N. Main St., rather than the 900 N. Main address which has been in use for many years. This change was prompted by a re-mapping of the entire village for 9-1-1 emergency response purposes.
12/11/01 In response to the bank’s customer survey earlier this year, an ATM will be installed at the Payson FS Fast Stop convenience store on December 18th. An ATM is in the design of the bank’s remodeling plans for Liberty as well.
01/17/02 A request had been made by the Rural Adams Development Corporation for a $10,000 loan to recapitalize the revolving loan fund of the CDC, as the loan fund has been fully utilized, and additional project requests are coming in. The bank’s involvement in the RADC has been extensive, and the program has been quite successful.
03/04/02 Excavation begins for new addition to banking house in Liberty.
04/08/02 A $500 donation was made to the Payson-Fall Creek Fire Department for the Infrared Camera they wished to purchase. A $500 donation was also made to the renovation of the baseball diamond at Barry High School.
08/20/02 ATM scheduled to be delivered and installed in Liberty on September 5th.
09/17/02 Plans are being made for the bank’s 100th Anniversary next June. The chairman has contracted with Country Music Singer Jerry Reed to perform at the Liberty Park on Monday, June 23rd to celebrate the actual anniversary of the founding of the bank.
11/12/02 This was the first meeting in the new addition to the bank building, so a tour was provided for the directors. Work will begin soon on demolition of the interior of the original building.
The bank is one of the sponsors for the “pillars” on display as part of the “Character Counts” program at the Payson School. The six pillars are: Caring; Citizenship; Trustworthiness; Responsibility; Respect; and Fairness.
Chairman Field had been contacted by Dorothy Scranton of Payson regarding land surrounding the bank’s Payson office which she currently owns. He has negotiated to purchase the small house and adjoining land, which would make expansion of the Payson Community Banking Center possible in the future.
The bank’s annual Christmas Party will be held on Saturday, December 14th in the new basement meeting room at the bank. The staff from all three branches and their spouses will get a preview of the building progress.
02/11/03 A discussion followed concerning interest rates, the economy in general, and the possible effects on the local economy of a war with Iraq. It is not expected that a war would immediately cause an economic downturn in this area, and prompt action by the military and a quick resolution to the conflict would actually bolster consumer confidence.
The building construction is nearly complete, and final clean-up is scheduled to be completed soon. Weather will be the limiting factor on the completion of the soffit and guttering work on the exterior.
03/18/03 Moment of silence for Director Quinn, who passed away recently.
The Payson Sports Boosters are trying to raise money to replace the gym floor. The chairman offered to make an interest-free loan of up to $20,000.00 for up to five years to cover the amount they are short. The loan will be made to the school’s foundation, and donations will be directed back through the foundation.
Further plans for the bank’s 100th Anniversary are underway. The Lion’s Club will assist in setting up the park and serving refreshments, and the Jaycees will set up their kids games with the bank providing free prizes.
04/07/03 It was reported that the improvements to the main office were completed two weeks ago, with the installation of the soffit and guttering, and the cleaning crew started final clean-up last week. Many favorable comments have been received from customers and others on the project.
06/22/03 Open House and Grand Re-Opening hosted at main banking house in Liberty. Refreshments are served, and guided tours of the bank are provided by staff.
06/23/03 Bank hosts “Picnic in the Park” for 100th Anniversary. Country Music Star Jerry Reed entertains many guests. Liberty Lions Club assists in setup and serving food. Liberty Jaycees provide kid’s games, and Liberty Art Club paints faces in festive spirit!
08/12/03 The Bank has made an interest-free loan of $20,000.00 to the Payson school’s foundation for the replacement of the gymnasium floor. It will be repaid over five years.
09/09/03 New accounting was set up to accommodate selling fixed-rate mortgages to the Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago.
10/14/03 A new insurance agency will be housed in the two offices on the Southwest corner of the bank.
11/18/03 The bank recently donated $500.00 for new playground equipment for the Liberty Schools, and provided mini basketballs for Liberty and Payson schools. The bank received a Centennial Award plaque from the Illinois State Historical Society commemorating the bank’s 100 years of service, and State Representative Art Tenhouse presented the bank with a copy of House Resolution 469, which was adopted by the Illinois General Assembly to congratulate the bank of its 100th Anniversary. Chairman Field was quoted in the recent edition of the Independent Banker national magazine.
11/18/03 The chairman may also consider the installation of a “check imaging” and image statement system. The bank’s current hardware support company has an option available that is stand-alone, and could be moved to another core processor in the future, if the bank did switch vendors.
01/13/04 Some new equipment is being purchased, which will include an “image camera” or check scanner. The scanner will replace the microfilmer currently being used to film all items processed by the bank, as well as all inclearings and “on-us” items. Eventually, it may be used to provide image-based statements to customers, and possibly to transmit deposited “transit items” in the future, thus preparing the bank as the new Check-21 (Check-clearing for the 21st Century) legislation begins to take root.
04/08/04 A new TV spot, which includes the chairman’s children in addition to the entire bank staff is airing on Channel 10.
07/12/04 Chairman Field recently presented a consumer education session to a women’s support group organized through the Assembly of God Church in Quincy. The group is led by longtime bank customer Marcia Elliott. The session included each attendee receiving a $20 bill, compliments of the bank, with a “Stretch-a-Twenty” contest to see which of the ladies could do the best job of buying food for their family. The person who is able to have the lowest cost-per-meal will win $200.00 from the bank at a later meeting.
01/10/05 Chairman Field was recently elected Treasurer of the Rural Adams Development Corporation, the non-profit CDC that he helped form years ago. Mr. Schoonover is chairing the Adams County Red Cross’ annual fund drive, and will be featured on the “Corporate Profiles” TV program in the near future.
01/10/05 Chairman Field commended the staff on their performance during a forgery incident recently. A customer called and indicated that her purse had been stolen from her home. A female who closely resembled the customer, and a male accomplice, had used our customer’s ID to cash a check for $2,000 at the Payson facility right before the alert call was received. The staff acted quickly to alert employees at all three offices of the situation, and contacted law enforcement agencies as well. The perpetrators then showed up at the Barry facility to try to cash another check. Law enforcement was alerted and the thieves were apprehended between Barry and Pittsfield.
01/14/05 Chairman Field was recently elected President of the Liberty Education Foundation and was appointed to the Board of Directors of the area Entrepreneurship Center which is being established.
04/11/05 The bank donated a furnace and air conditioner to the Faith Assembly of God’s Outreach Center in Quincy. It had been removed during the remodeling and expansion project, and was still in fairly good shape.
06/13/15 The bank was honored to be listed in the Independent Banker magazine in their “Top 20″ ranking of all ICBA member banks nationwide. Our bank was ranked as having the 13th highest ROE for Subchapter “C” banks of less than $50 million in assets. Management and staff should be quite proud of that accomplishment.
08/22/05 The Wall Street Journal ran an Op-Ed piece on August 10th regarding Deposit Insurance. They were recommending AGAINST an increase in the level of insurance provided by the FDIC. Their obvious motive appeared within the text of the so-called “article”, in that they mentioned that “Raising the deposit-insurance limit could have the undesirable effect of diverting funds away from stock ownership into low-return bank deposits.” Chairman Field indicated that he would be cancelling his subscription to the Wall Street Journal and writing a letter to them explaining why.
09/12/05 A discussion followed concerning crop conditions in the immediate area, and the effect it may have on the banks producer-customers. The conditions vary greatly within a short radius of Liberty, with initial reports showing yields stronger than initially expected, but still not up to recent averages. Some producers may need to restructure their operating debt onto real estate or equipment to amortize it over a longer period of time.
09/12/05 Letters were received from the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation, and the FHLB of Chicago regarding guidelines and requests for all banks to assist Hurricane Katrina victims in their time of need. It is not expected to directly impact this bank.
11/12/05 The board discussed the impending appointment of Ben S. Bernanke as the new chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. It is hoped that Mr. Bernanke will be more communicative than his predecessor, which would allow the market to remove as much uncertainty as possible.
11/12/05 One very long-term project that the chairman is considering involves the acquisition of a lot in or near Quincy for possible future expansion. This is not a project that would be started for some time, even if a suitable tract becomes available, but the ground may be secured if the right combination of location and price could be secured.
02/13/06 The bank went “live” with all-digital images for the transit check deposits on February 3rd. Our bank was the first in this area to transmit such images to the Bankers Bank, and about the 5th in the state to do so. Everything is running smoothly with the new technology, but it is presenting a challenge to management to revisit the scheduling of employees and the rotation of duties, due to the technical nature of the work that is now required.
03/13/06 Messrs. Schoonover and Mills both attended the City of Barry’s open house for their new maintenance facility and offices, in addition to the bank having sent a decorative gift for the open house. The bank sponsored a bus for the Liberty Eagles’ trip to the super-sectional basketball game recently. The Eagles won back-to-back sectional championships but were defeated this year in the super-sectional.
04/10/06 The FDIC has increased deposit insurance coverage on IRA accounts to $250,000.00 effective April 1st. This is the first increase in deposit insurance coverage levels since 1980. The levels of insurance on regular deposits will be adjusted for inflation every five years beginning in 2011. With the inflation we have seen since 1980, the chairman expressed his disappointment that the regular levels were not increased to $200,000.00 at this time.
07/10/06 Recently appointed State Representative Jil Tracy is hosting a meet-and-greet session at St. Brigid’s hall this evening. The board will join that event upon the adjournment of this meeting.
08/10/06 The bank’s staff turned out in good numbers for the Payson Old Settlers’ celebration, including the parade on August 5th. The bank’s advertising campaign will soon showcase the bank’s “everyday great rates” on ALL maturities of CD’s.
08/10/06 A special dividend of $10,000.00 was authorized on a motion by Schoonover, seconded by Talken, to allow the holding company to make an endowment donation of a like amount to the Liberty Education Foundation. The donation is being made in memory of Michael Gerard Field, the infant son of Chairman Mark Field, who was born on July 17th, and for whom the Lord apparently had special plans in place, as Michael was called to His presence the very same day.
09/18/06 The bank purchased a 20-foot by 30-foot American Flag and carried it in the Liberty Fall Festival parade. This showing of patriotism was well-received by the community. A display case for the flag which flew over the U.S. Capitol on the bank’s 100th Anniversary was recently built by Robert Field. Mr. Schoonover was recently named chairman of the Adams County Chapter of the American Red Cross. The bank’s TV ads currently caution the consumers to watch out for CD Specials when our bank offers “everyday great rates – across the board”.
01/08/07 Notice was received that the group health insurance plan premiums will increase 30% in January, which was factored into the new budget. The chairman is asking all employees to complete applications for several different companies so that competitive quotes can be obtained for comparison.
01/08/07 Options for internet banking services will be sought, with findings to be reported to the board at a later date.
03/19/07 It was reported this afternoon that a bomb-threat and robbery had taken place at the State Street Bank facility in Payson. Our staff was evacuated and the facility was closed at approximately 2:00 p.m. for the remainder of the day.
04/09/07 The parking lot in Payson will soon be expanded 40 feet to the East, to open up more parking spaces and make it safer for cars, as they will no longer need to back out onto the highway. Increased customer traffic has prompted the need for the additional spaces. The garage at the rental house in Payson will need to be removed to make room for the project. An overhead scale photo was obtained from the county’s GIS website to illustrate the project.
04/09/07 The feasibility of having a natural gas/LP-fired backup generator for the Liberty facility is being investigated currently. The electric service in recent years has suffered several outages, with a recent one lasting several hours. The staff has managed to keep critical systems running using the small portable generator that the bank had purchased for Y2K purposes, but a larger, more permanent solution may be needed. Mr. Talken offered to gather information regarding the number and duration of outages from his former employer, AmerenCIPS.
05/14/07 In addition to the bank’s giving $500 and $250 scholarships to seniors at all three school districts this year, we will also be awarding the $1000.00 regional award from the CBAI to Liberty Senior Nicole Dittmer for her winning essay. The “Community Service Award”, which was initiated in the early 1980’s as the Irene Longlett Award will be changed at the request of Mrs. Longlett. She had called the chairman a few weeks back and asked to have her name removed from the award. She was grateful for the honor that was bestowed upon her for these many years, but felt it was time for the bank to have its own name on the award.
05/14/07 An update on the implementation of the Funds Xpress internet banking system followed. Employee accounts have been activated for testing purposes, and there will be a “first wave” of customers signed up after the initial testing is complete. After the first wave is up and running, the availability of internet banking will be advertised and general enrollments will begin. IT Manager VanDeVelde and Operations Assistant Fundell will be attending training at the Funds Xpress campus in Austin, Texas later this month.
06/11/07 Chairman Field and Mr. Mills will be attending the school board meeting for the newly formed “Western” district this Wednesday to attempt to solicit the depository accounts of the new district, which encompasses the former Barry and West Pike school districts. Mr. Mills also presented the Alumni Award and American Legion Awards at the graduation ceremonies recently. The Barry Banking Center also participated in the Business Association’s “Cruise-N-Tunes” radio promotion.
12/10/07 The chairman outlined his intent to add “mobile banking” services to the internet banking system, which will allow customers to log on using their internet-enabled cell phones, BlackBerrys, and other similar devices. Our bank will be the first local bank in this market to have that product, but Bank of America is currently advertising it as being available. The product should launch in January or February, and will be the topic of our TV and newspaper ads immediately thereafter. It is expected to be a fast-growing segment of the internet banking market.
02/11/08 The Barry staff proudly utilized the bank’s large parade flag to give the local National Guard unit a proper send-off on their tour to Iraq by draping it over the I-72 overpass while the caravan passed by on their way to Indiana for training. The husband of Liberty Teller Stephanie Riley is a member of that unit. Current advertising centers around IRA’s, but will be redirected to introduce the Mobile Banking product as soon as it can be unveiled. The bank provided checking account balancing/training kits to Liberty High School.
07/10/08 The bank donated $1,000 to the local Red Cross chapter for its recent flood relief efforts. A discussion followed concerning a bid received from Albsmeyer Electric for a permanent natural gas-fired generator which would be large enough to run the entire bank. Power outages continue to be a problem, and no one seems to know why they occur so often here. The 60kW generator will be able to run on propane gas as well, in case something drastic happens to the natural gas mains. The bank building could be made available to the community in the event of a prolonged outage or disaster once it is properly equipped.
09/22/08 A discussion followed concerning the economy in general, and the “financial crisis” that is developing on Wall Street, with the collapse of many too-large-to-fail entities and the ensuing government bailout. The chairman recently returned from Washington, DC, where he attended a meeting for the Regulatory Review Committee for the ICBA. Meetings were held with top regulators from the FDIC, OCC, FED and OTS to discuss current matters, along with other pending issues. While a few community banks did hold the preferred stock in FNMA and FHLMC which is now seriously impaired, the problems in the market affect the stock brokers, mortgage brokers and large banks far more severely than the community banks. The bonds we own continue to hold will retain their value and are fully guaranteed. There is talk of the creation of government insurance for some money-market mutual funds, which would not be a welcome development, as they would then directly compete with FDIC-insured bank deposits. As long as depositors remain calm, there should be little direct effect on our bank. The chairman was interviewed by WGEM Channel 10, KHQA Channel 7, and the Quincy Herald-Whig concerning the banking crisis upon his return from Washington DC.
10/14/08 New TV ads are running which assure local borrowers that there is no ‘credit crunch” here locally in light of what is on the national news, and another ad running concurrently reminds folks that the safest place to keep their money is in FDIC-insured accounts and CDs at our bank. The bank is providing checking account balancing kits to the local high schools to assist the consumer education classes in properly preparing the young folks to handle their accounts responsibly.
10/14/08 President Bush recently signed the emergency act which temporarily increases FDIC insurance to $250,000 per depositor through December 31, 2009. Chairman Field indicated that he was certain that the trade groups would push to make that increase permanent.
11/17/08 A donation of $2,500 was made to the Barry Fire Department for their new building campaign. Bank staff assisted with the annual campaign for the Liberty Education Foundation.
12/08/08 The chairman outlined highlights of the FDIC’s two-part Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program, and explained why he opted out of both parts. One part would cover non-interest-bearing deposit accounts in excess of the $250,000 FDIC limit for a fee. Our bank does not have that many non-interest-bearing accounts that would require such coverage. The other part of the program has to do with obtaining an FDIC guarantee for bank-issued short-term debt securities, which is certainly not applicable to our operation.
02/09/09 The bank recently hosted the Western Illinois Leadership Academy class in our basement meeting room. Chairman Field welcomed the class participants and presenters. The chairman was recently elected to the Board of Directors for the United Way of Adams County.
07/20/09 The bank recently received a congratulatory letter from the ICBA announcing that our bank was listed in the “Top 400” community bank members for financial performance for 2008. We were 19th on the list of the top 20 ROE’s for C-corp. banks between $50-100 million in assets, at 13.43%.
11/19/09 A discussion followed concerning the economy, and interest rates. We are now assuming that the low rate environment will remain with us for the next 12-18 months. It may help to bolster home sales, but the savers are going to have less income as a result.
01/11/10 Mr. Robert Field offered the opening prayer and also included a special prayer for former bank chairman Kurt Schaffer who, we had just recently learned, had passed away on December 10th. Had it not been for Mr. Schaffer’s kindness and generosity, Mr. Field would not have had the opportunity to purchase the controlling interest of this bank in 1984.
03/08/10 The chairman presented a copy of an article to each board member which was entitled “Everybody Has A Brand”. The article was shared at the staff meeting last week as well, and it outlines how a business must continually work on their brand identity and must continuously battle indifference and hypocrisy.
04/12/10 The chairman offered the rental house next to our Payson facility to the Payson Food Pantry (Loaves and Fishes Program) at no cost other than actual utilities usage. The bank will retain a small portion of the rear of the building for our own storage purposes, and the whole front of the building will house the food pantry. The Loaves and Fishes group had been utilizing a much smaller space previously, and their board members had to keep freezers and shelving at their personal residences to accommodate the usual inventory. They were delighted to have access to the larger space where everything could stay in one spot.
05/10/10 The bank is assisting in the promotion of the 150th anniversary of the “Stone’s Prairie Riot”, as the Village of Plainville was originally called Stone’s Prairie, and a political riot broke out there 150 years ago this August 25th because of the great divide between supporters of Abraham Lincoln, and his opponent Stephen Douglas.
06/21/10 Chairman Field announced that he has been asked to serve on the Midwest Advisory Board for The Independent BankersBank (TIB), which is based in Irving, Texas and serves banks almost nationwide.
07/19/10 The new loan for the Payson Masonic Lodge was made to assist the group in constructing a new community center in Payson on a lot they inherited from a former member.
08/23/10 The Village of Payson contacted Chairman Field concerning their need for a loan of for the purpose of constructing a water main which would connect the Village to the Clayton-Camp Point Water Commission’s lines, which would then enable the Village to sell excess water daily. Conversely, in the event of an emergency, they could purchase water from CCPWC to supply the Village. Due to the public nature of the project, a very special rate was offered to the Village.
08/23/10 The 15th Anniversary celebration for the Barry Community Banking Center was a success. Refreshments were served different days, drawings were held, and many nice comments were received from our customers throughout the area. The chairman praised the staff for building a float for the recent Payson parade, which subsequently won the first place prize, in addition to winning the “Mayor’s Choice Award”. Many nice comments were received.
08/23/10 The chairman had been contacted by Jorge Solis, the director of the IDFPR some weeks ago, and was asked if he would consider coming back onto the State Banking Board of Illinois. The chairman contacted State Senator John Sullivan to make sure there would be no problem is gaining senate confirmation for the post. John indicated that he could foresee no problems. The Board had been severely neglected during the Blagojevich administration and the department has been working with both hands tied behind its back. This, at a time when they should have been given the tools to deal with the banking crisis, and work to prevent future such problems.
10/18/10 The chairman recently joined other United Way board members in welcoming educators from Australia who were interested in seeing how the “7-Habits of Highly Effective People” has been implemented in grade schools throughout Adams County, with the help of the local United Way.
02/14/11 The bank recently assisted the Liberty Township in purchasing the former Jansen Machine & Tool property which is adjacent to their existing facility.
03/14/11 Chairman Field discussed with the board a project that he is involved with on behalf of the Liberty Education Foundation. Fundraising efforts will soon begin for the purchase of a “marquee” style electronic message center sign for the school. The chairman asked the board to consider a substantial participation in this project.
10/11/11 The chairman indicated that he may have an opportunity to look at a property at 4134 Broadway Street in Quincy as a possible branch location. As the board had discussed months ago, there is no other expansion opportunity that makes as much sense for this bank than to move in to Quincy. Much of our growth has been coming from the immediate Quincy area anyway, plus a majority of our existing customers work and shop in Quincy, and they would certainly appreciate another convenient location from which they can transact their business with us. On a motion by Matlick, seconded by Schoonover, management was authorized to act as necessary if a reasonable price can be negotiated.
11/14/11 Our “100% Local” campaign is in full swing, and now the ICBA has come out with a “Go Local” campaign for all community banks to take advantage of the fact that consumers are finally making the distinction between the Wall Street banks and the Main Street banks since the “great recession” began.
11/14/11 Board votes to make online bill-pay service FREE to our customers.
04/09/12 The meeting adjourned temporarily to allow the directorate to attend a local “town hall” meeting hosted by State Senator John Sullivan at the Village of Liberty’s local office.
05/14/12 We will soon be installing the new TellerScan program that we helped to develop, which will enable the customer service folks to scan all documents in at the teller window, rather than having to batch-scan items in the back room. The vault was successfully installed at the Quincy banking house last week. The major concrete work for the parking lot should conclude soon. The brick columns and railing for the top of the retaining wall should be installed soon, and the framing for the interior walls will be completed soon. Work can then begin on the interior mechanicals.
06/11/12 The chairman shared a copy of the June issue of the Independent Banker magazine, which ranked our bank as #16 in the nation (ICBA members only) in Return on Equity for C-Corp banks between $50-100 million. This was the third time we have received such honors from our national association.
08/13/12 “Lawn Officer” Bobby Field appeared in this month’s Independent Banker magazine in an article by ICBA CEO Cam Fine. Cam was delighted to see that our “next generation” of community bankers is already becoming active in the industry, as he had the opportunity to meet Bobby at the Washington, DC summit in late April.
08/13/12 The drive-up “island” ATM was installed at the Quincy Community Banking Center on August 6th, and it is now fully operational. A general update on other progress in Quincy followed. Painting has begun on parts of the interior, and the drive-up and night drop equipment has been installed. Electrical work is in progress as well.
09/10/12 Chairman Field had sent a letter to Quincy Mayor John Spring to request assistance in obtaining permission from the City to install the memorial inscription “In God We Trust” on the retaining wall at the Quincy facility. A computer-generated scale drawing of the memorial was shared with the board. It features 24-inch tall lettering with an additional 12-inch border made of the same granite material, and it will stretch approximately 32 feet across the retaining wall, running from one flag-pole to the other. The city’s zoning department indicated that it would have to be classified as a “ground-mounted sign”, and the current ordinances prohibit a business from having BOTH a pole sign and a ground-mounted sign. The Mayor called today and indicated that a variance application would need to be submitted, and that we would have his full support on the matter.
11/08/12 Chairman Field offered the opening prayer which included thanks to The Lord for His help throughout the process of purchasing, preparing and staffing the Quincy facility. The chairman, along with Mr. Talken and contractor Frank Sakulenzki, attended the Quincy City Council meeting on Monday night to request that the Council overturn the decision of the Zoning Board of Appeals to allow for the installation of the planned “In God We Trust” memorial on the retaining wall in Quincy. He had sent letters to each alderman last week detailing the request, and the letter included a copy of the computerized scale rendering of the granite inscription. The request passed the Council with only one “nay” vote. Our thanks go to all who supported our project.
12/10/12 The Quincy Community Banking Center was opened for business on Monday, November 26th in a “soft opening” to make sure all systems were fully operational The courier route bags were processed there as well.
04/15/13 We are going to do an “experiment in Superior Service” with offering an extended cutoff time, to give customers immediate credit for any item received while we are open, except for on Saturdays, which are still NOT considered to be a “business day”. Operations Manager Rory Fundell has offered to process the necessary computer work after closing time to make that possible. We will not make any announcements to the public until we have had an opportunity to assess the downside, if any, of doing the work this way. Eventually, we may advertise it as a competitive advantage over many other banks.
05/13/13 The memorial inscription “In God We Trust” is being installed on the retaining wall at the Quincy Banking Center, and is nearly complete. Construction of the memorial began on May 2nd. Gem City Memorials performed the laser-engraving on the black granite panels, and Aschemann-Huber Masonry is installing the stone, which was purchased from customer Mid-West Paints. Project General Contractor Frank Sakulenzki is coordinating the effort.
06/10/13 The Bank’s 110th Anniversary and Quincy Grand Opening on May 18th was considered a HUGE success. We fed approximately 750 people, and there were at least a couple hundred more that came before and after lunch. New Quincy Mayor Kyle Moore officiated in cutting the ribbon. The winner of the flat-screen TV was Kevin Phillips of Quincy, and the winner of the tablet computer was John Kladstrup, also from Quincy. The Memorial Inscription “In God We Trust” has been completely installed on the retaining wall in Quincy, and we are receiving MANY favorable comments about it. We are still having issues holding the dirt up from the creek bank to the bottom of the retaining wall, so some additional work will be necessary.
08/12/13 Our bank is sponsoring a luncheon with area bankers at the United Way to discuss participation with the new “Financial Stability Initiative” coordinator to implement financial education at ALL grade levels in Adams County schools. The curriculum, available through the Junior Achievement organization, consists of age-appropriate materials for each grade level, and the United Way will be counting on volunteers from banks and other businesses to devote an hour a week for 6-8 weeks to present the concepts in class. The program will start with the Quincy Public Schools, but will be ultimately implemented in all County schools, including parochial. Chairman Field recently received the news that our bank will be receiving the “Pride of Quincy Award” from the Quincy Association of Realtors at their annual meeting next month. Customer/Realtor Terri Pratt nominated us for the award, which recognizes either a new project or a remodeling which makes a dramatic improvement to the Quincy community. The “In God We Trust” inscription was apparently a major part of what swayed their voting decision our direction.
12/16/13 The Independent Banker Magazine this month contains a feature article on the “Community Bankers Cooperative” which the chairman is heavily involved in creating to continue the Bancado software program.
02/10/14 The chairman was recently elected Board Chairman for the Community Bankers Cooperative, which is in the process of purchasing the BANCADO core software from Waldorf Computer Systems, to offer stability and control over our future core processing needs.
03/17/14 The chairman indicated that there is basically a “marketing war” going on right now between all banks and credit unions who are trying to garner the attention of customers who are affected by the upcoming Bank of America branch closings and the recent changes in Mercantile Bank’s ownership. All banks are trying to look like they are LOCAL banks, even when they are owned by outside interests. We are one of very FEW real local banks left standing.
08/11/14 A news reporter for Channel 10 interviewed the chairman concerning the “concealed carry” issue, and whether or not our bank would prohibit lawful carry on premises. The chairman indicated that by posting a sign to prohibit lawful firearms you are only welcoming criminals, who intend to break laws anyway, to bring a firearm into your building.
12/08/14 Mr Schoonover has been appointed by Quincy Mayor Kyle Moore to the city’s Fire Pension Board.
04/14/15 The bank had sponsored the recent Pike County Economic Development Corporation’s annual meeting by providing refreshments and working with their management to increase attendance at their showcase annual gathering. The bank also helped to sponsor the annual Community Leaders Breakfast in Quincy. Messrs. Field & Schoonover both worked on the Lion’s Club annual Consignment Sale, which has grown to be quite an event in its own right over the past 30 years.
04/14/15 The teller line in Liberty will be remodeled soon, with the design following a similar theme as the Quincy line, with sit-down, semi-private work areas for each CSR. There will be three stations in the line, with gates on both ends, which will make it easier for personnel to pass through to the bookkeeping area.
05/11/15 This year marks the 20th Anniversary of the opening of our Barry Community Banking Center. We will be holding a cookout on Saturday, August 1st to thank the community for banking with us.
08/10/15 The bank is participating in Channel 7’s “Love the Locals” promotion, which is quite consistent with the message we convey in our typical campaign. The bank has committed support of $1,000 per year for three years for a program to assist John Wood Community College in working with Liberty High School to offer “concurrent enrollment” classes, where LHS students receive college credits for certain classes offered through LHS.
10/13/15 Chairman Field received notice that Governor Bruce Rauner wanted to reappoint him to another 3-year term on the State Banking Board of Illinois. The reappointment is subject to Senate approval. He also was asked by the management of Shazam to stand for election to the board of directors of the Illinois Transfer System, which is Shazam’s Illinois subsidiary. Their annual meeting will be held on October 29th .
10/13/15 An offering circular on shares of stock in the holding company for correspondent TIB was shared with the board. The chairman has indicated that due to his involvement with the Midwest Advisory Council for TIB, and the opportunity to see almost all aspects of the operation there, he is very comfortable in recommending that a stock purchase be made. A discount on services is offered to stockholders, and a good return on equity is expected to continue long-term, as professional risk-mitigation techniques are deployed throughout that operation at many levels. On a motion by Schoonover, seconded by Faler, a subscription for $250,000 of common stock was authorized.
As you can see, the bank has touched on many different aspects of community life over the years, to help make Liberty and other nearby communities develop. Many folks have counted on The Farmers Bank of Liberty to help their families with financial needs for generations, and the bank now has customers scattered all over the country, from Florida to Arizona, from Michigan to Texas, as the level of service provided here at home cannot be matched elsewhere. But these fine people do not still bank in Liberty because of the brick and mortar located here. It is the PEOPLE IN THE BANK that are the drawing card. They are the ones that are mostly responsible for the success the bank has enjoyed over the years. Who were they, and who are they today? We will now attempt to provide a listing of all those who have worked in the bank over the years, as best we could, given the information in the official minutes of meetings and in payroll records that are still intact.