On May 16, 1914, J.J. McGuire, a member of the McGuire Lumber Co. family, along with F.L. Sharon, H.D. Feldick, C.J. Anderson, and E.B. Aukes, organized and incorporated the Farmers Trust and Savings Bank in Buffalo Center. The bank building was located at 125 North Main Street, the same address that had been occupied by several other banks in the town's early days.
The Great Depression of the 1920s and 1930s caused many banks in Iowa and across the county to fail and First National Bank of Buffalo Center was one that did not survive. Farmers Trust and Savings Bank purchased their bank building and the business was moved across the street to 201 Main Street in 1935.
The Depression also caused both of the banks in Lakota to fail, leaving the community without a bank. Farmers Trust and Savings Bank opened an office there in 1935.
Elso E. Sapp purchased controlling interest of the bank in the 1930s. After 53 years of personal involvement in the bank, he sold controlling interest to W.D. Ley in 1967.
Construction of a new building in Buffalo Center was completed in the spring of 1971 at 101 North Main Street, where the home office is currently located.
In February 1992, the bank purchased the Home Federal Savings & Loan office in Britt from the regulators. It was the first expansion of the bank in 58 years.
The bank received approval in March 1998 to open a bank office in Lake Mills. A temporary loan production office was opened in October 1998 while the bank building was being constructed. The new bank opened in February 1999.
In February 2002, the bank purchased the Gateway Savings Bank office in Lake Mills and merged it with its existing office.
In April 2012, the bank purchased the State Bank of Bricelyn, MN. The bank had been owned by the Flo family for over 100 years.
W.D. Ley passed away in December 2000 and his shares were held in his Estate until June 2004 when they were sold, along with other minority shares, to the employees of the bank. The employees (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) now own over 85% of the shares.
Throughout its history, the bank has existed to provide credit, quality financial products, and outstanding service to the communities in which it served. To this day, we remain primarily an agricultural bank in rural north central Iowa and south central Minnesota and we're proud of our heritage.
The bank paid 5% on 6-month CDs in 1914.
During the 90+ year history of the bank, there have been 6 presidents: J.J McGuire, E.B. Aukes, E.E. Sapp, W.D. Ley, C.J. Gerzema, and Brian Vander Wilt.
After one year of business, the bank's capital account totaled $28,868 with total assets of $249,800. Today, capital exceeds $23,000,000 with total assets of $225,000,000.