175th Anniversary banner compliments of the students at The Blue Hills Montessori School.
If you're a history buff, you probably already know that 1835 was an auspicious year: the United States public debt contracted to $0.00 for the first (and only) time, Charles Darwin first landed on the Galopagos Islands aboard the HMS Beagle, P.T. Barnum launched his inaugural circus tour of the U.S., and renowned author and humorist Mark Twain was born. Perhaps, you even know that Americans were just beginning to adjust to life with sewing machines, typewriters, and Braille and that our nation was comprised of a mere twenty-four states. But did you know that America's 23rd financial institution, Bank of Canton (known then as Canton Institution for Savings), opened its first branch office in a tavern in 1835? Or, that Paul Revere and his descendants played important roles in the evolution of not only the Town of Canton, but also Bank of Canton? If you’re interested in learning more, then please read on!
In 1835, a group of citizens from the Town of Canton met at Bent’s Tavern, which was part of the old Massapoag Hotel in Canton, to discuss the organization of a mutual savings bank. On March 4, 1835, Acting Governor Samuel T. Armstrong ratified the petition submitted by Adam Kingsley, Friend Crane, and Jonathan Stone and Canton Institution for Savings was born. In April of 1835, the first President, Thomas French, and Vice Presidents, Friend Crane and Dr. Jonathan Stone, were chosen and, in May, the first deposit of $50 was made.
The family of the great American patriot Paul Revere played a significant role not only in the formation of Canton Institution for Savings, but also in its governance for more than 100 years. Paul Revere’s nephew and adopted son, Frederick W. Lincoln, served on the Bank’s Inaugural Committee of Investment and as President from 1845-1852. Revere’s direct descendant, William B. Revere, served as Treasurer in 1923 and as President from 1934-1948.
How did such an important Boston-born patriot and his family become so ingrained in the fabric of our Bank and in the Town of Canton? Although immortalized as an American hero, Paul Revere was also a wealthy and well-respected businessman. After having already earned a fortune as a silver and goldsmith, Mr. Revere at age 65 decided to invest in a mill designed to roll copper into sheets because he had seen the long-term economic promise in replacing corrosive iron fixtures on ships with rust-proof copper.
With his Boston-based business surrounded by shipyards, Mr. Revere looked outside of the city for a location for his new venture. Historians surmise that he first learned of properties in Canton while researching ways to manufacture gunpowder for the American Revolution. During those fact-finding trips, Mr. Revere became acquainted with a government-owned gunpowder mill in town and that familiarity most likely played a major role in his decision to purchase the site years later after an explosion decimated the facility. After purchasing the mill site in 1801, he quickly opened up shop and landed major contracts to provide copper sheathing to cover the dome of the Massachusetts State House and protect the hull of the U.S.S. Constitution (also known as "Old Ironsides").
Although it may be hard to believe, the Bank’s early leadership decided that Bent’s Tavern was a perfect location to serve as the institution’s first branch. From that humble beginning, the Bank subsequently relocated to an old stone house in the center of town, an office near the Canton train station, and a former Post Office building before settling in at the site where Bank of Canton's main branch resides to this day.
Bank of Canton's main branch located at 557 Washington Street in Canton.
Bank of Canton remained a solid, slow-growing local savings bank until 1987 when James D. Egan, former Chairman of the Board, became President and transformed our institution into a vibrant, expanding provider of financial services. The impact of this transformation, including the expansion beyond the borders of Canton, was certainly dramatic: Bank of Canton added four additional full-service branch locations, three mortgage centers, and two stand alone ATMs and tripled in size since that time.
Since then, the Bank has significantly expanded its residential lending capacity and established itself as one of the premier providers of mortgage loans in the Commonwealth. In particular, since Stephen P. Costello assumed the role of President & Chief Executive Officer in October 2008, the Bank's laser-sharp focus on providing unparalleled mortgage lending services to borrowers throughout Massachusetts has led to a significant number of accolades including:
As a result of the low rate environment and exceptional performance from the Mortgage Lending Team, the Bank of Canton has originated over $2 billion in Residential Mortgages over the past three years, and is on track for another billion in 2012. Despite the tremendous increase in volume, our team has maintained a Customer Satisfaction Score of 98%3 -- demonstrating that as community bank, we value and dedicate ourselves to exceptional customer service.
Throughout its 177-year history, Bank of Canton has staunchly maintained its status as a mutual savings bank. Mutual savings institutions have no stockholders and, as such, consider their customers and communities as their key stakeholders. The majority of the Bank’s assets have been used to meet the home mortgage and commercial financing needs of the communities we serve.
The Bank has also maintained its commitment to supporting all communities we serve through donations of time, talent and treasure to local charities and non-profit organizations. In 2011, we donated $100,000 to various causes throughout Massachusetts including, but not limited to, the following organizations:
The Bank is also pleased to make the Charles W. Pinkham Auditorium, a state-of-the-art 225 seat conference room facility located at our Corporate Offices, available to certain community conferences throughout the year. We have been proud to host Norfolk Advocates for Children (NAC) Conference, the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association, Inc. (MIAA’s) YOU LEAD Program, Massachusetts Bankers Association’s Bank Reporting Project on Preventing Financial Exploitation of the Elderly Conference, and the FBI’s and Massachusetts State Police’s Intelligence Sharing in Support of Counterterrorism Conference.
In our continuous efforts to ensure we provide our customers with the financial solutions they need, Bank of Canton recently launched an exciting new suite of services, B.O.C. Life Solutions – Estate Planning and Asset Protection expertise from the people that you trust. Anyone who has something as simple as a bank account needs a plan to protect it down the road, and Bank of Canton has created a service for our customers to be able to do just that – right here, in familiar surroundings, at their community bank. The launch of B.O.C. Life Solutions is just one of the many exciting developments taking place at Bank of Canton, and we hope our customers and friends look forward to the additional projects unfolding in the near future.
We sincerely hope you’ve enjoyed learning more about Bank of Canton's humble, and yet inspiring beginnings. Our sincerest thanks goes out to the employees, homeowners, boardmembers, depositors, corporators, business owners, builders, and trade organizers throughout Massachusetts who have supported our institution for 177 years and counting. Without your loyalty, passion, dedication, and leadership, the Bank could never have lived up to the storied legacy envisioned by our founders over a pint (or two) at Bent’s Tavern nearly two centuries ago. Cheers!
Call 888.828.1690 for details
Stop by your local Bank of Canton branch or call 888.828.1690.
Stop by your local Bank of Canton branch or call 888.828.1690.
Federal Law prohibits businesses from performing transactions of any kind relating to unlawful Internet gambling using their Bank of Canton accounts. To learn more,please read our notice.
Please call our experienced Mortgage Lending Team at 888.828.1690.
Please call our experienced Financial Services Team at 781.737.1918.
Stop by your local Bank of Canton branch or call 781.830.6152.
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