2017-07-13 / Front Page

100 years of commitment

State Savings Bank celebrates milestone

At top, the State Savings Bank is shown in 1957 and today. At left, employees currently working at the bank’s main branch includes, front row, from left: Holly Hayden, Mel Bowman, Connie Zellar, Andrea Smith, Marya Cochran, Tina Bontekoe, Val Rosebush, and Donna Maxwell. Back row: Steph Reque, Taylor Neadow, Judy Horringa, Kathy McDonough, Mark Larche, Chris Gonyea, Scott Hoezee, Eric Oas, Clyde Strasler, Jackie Hansen, and Donna Martin. Not pictured are Beth Nelson and Amanda Six. Employees of the west side branch include Rene Brooks and Sally Rubick, at top right. The employees of the Curtis branch, above, left, include: Sandy McDonald and Julie Cochran. Gulliver branch employees, above, right, include: Debbie Huebner and Sherry Hampton. At top, the State Savings Bank is shown in 1957 and today. At left, employees currently working at the bank’s main branch includes, front row, from left: Holly Hayden, Mel Bowman, Connie Zellar, Andrea Smith, Marya Cochran, Tina Bontekoe, Val Rosebush, and Donna Maxwell. Back row: Steph Reque, Taylor Neadow, Judy Horringa, Kathy McDonough, Mark Larche, Chris Gonyea, Scott Hoezee, Eric Oas, Clyde Strasler, Jackie Hansen, and Donna Martin. Not pictured are Beth Nelson and Amanda Six. Employees of the west side branch include Rene Brooks and Sally Rubick, at top right. The employees of the Curtis branch, above, left, include: Sandy McDonald and Julie Cochran. Gulliver branch employees, above, right, include: Debbie Huebner and Sherry Hampton.

MANISTIQUE – Longevity speak volumes for any business, and the State Savings Bank in Manistique is no exception. This year, the local bank celebrates 100 years in serving the area – a feat not many accomplish.

The bank’s original articles of incorporation were dated May 7, 1917, while the charter was dated July 7, 1917 – the same day the bank opened with capital of $25,000 and a surplus of $5,000. The bank has now grown to hold assets of just over $123 million.

Original incorporators included: Leo C. Harmon, Bruce Odell, Benjamin Gero, Sr., Henry J. Neville, Edward R. Wescott, John N. Forshar, Edmund Ashford, Samuel H. Rutledge, John Hayden, John E. Hackenbrach, Burton A. Craver, John J. Hruska, Carl G. Ekstrom, George Graphos, William L. Middlebrook, John A. Schuster, August A. Carlson, Abraham M. LeRoy, Joseph H. Van Dyck, Victor J. Marin, John Coffey, Herbert T. Baker, Clarence E. Kelso, Allen H. Burch, Gottfrid S. Johnson, John A. Reagan, Paul M. Reagan, and Emanuel E. Larson.

First bank officers were: Harmon, president; Coffey, vice president; Neville, cashier; and Vernette B. Larson, assistant cashier.

The original board of directors included: Odell, Wescott, Harmon, Johnson, Coffey, Neville, John Reagan, Paul Reagan, and Larson.

By 1926, Harmon resigned from State Savings, and Wm. J. Shinar was selected to replace him. Shinar had been serving as a cashier at the bank since 1918.

When Shinar passed away in 1955, E.E. Cookson, stepped in to serve as president of the bank.

State Savings Bank rented the building it operated within from 1917 to 1940. It then purchased the building and carried out extensive interior and exterior renovations.

While in the building, State Savings saw its way through the Great Depression without causing loss to any depositor. By 1934, it became FDIC certified, and in 1940, the bank became part of the Federal Reserve System.

During the bank’s 45-year anniversary, it touted that it had conducted “business as usual” through many of the nation’s tumultuous periods, including WWI, the Great Depression, WWII, and the Korean War.

By the time the bank celebrated its 75th anniversary in 1992, it had expanded with branches in both Gulliver and the west side of Manistique. In 1996, the bank built the facility it currently occupies.

Perhaps one of the best-known local residents serving in capacity as bank president, Clyde Strasler, began working for State Savings in 1949. He first served as a bookkeeper and cashier and, later, as vice president. After 21 years with the bank, Strasler was elected by the bank’s board to replace outgoing president H.K. Bundy in 1970.

Currently, though retired, Strasler still maintains an office at the bank, offering his assistance to any who may need it.

“I answer questions,” he said. “I have some pencil records from way back when.”

In 1985, Mark Larche began at State Savings as vice president. He now serves as president and CEO.

Larche said the bank has been committed to the community since its inception.

“We’re very involved with the community,” he explained. “We have contributed to a lot of local causes, including CBC, Folkfest, and just about everything that goes on.”

As far as the staff members who keep the day-to-day operations of the bank running steadily, Larche said they are just as communityoriented.

“They’re very customer-orientated, a lot of our people have been around for very long time and know our customers well,” he explained.

While the bank celebrates its 100th anniversary, Larche said they will still prioritize the area.

“We plan to just continue being a part of the community and growing with the community,” he added.

As part of their 100th anniversary, State Savings Bank has celebrated by spontaneously completing random acts of kindness and also holding a customer appreciation day.

The current board of directors includes: Mark Larche, Robert Males, Tom Broullire, Guy H. Bowman, and Jon Jonson. Current bank officers are Larche, president and CEO; Eric Oas, vice president; Scott Hoezee, vice president; Chris Gonyea, vice president; Connie Zellar, assistant vice president; and Donna Maxwell, assistant vice president.



Above, the State Savings Bank operated in the same building from 1917 until 1940. At that time, the bank ceased renting the building and purchased it, subsequently performing major interior and exterior remodeling. Even more remodeling was completed in 1948 to accommodate the bank’s growing customer base. In 1976, the building was again revamped, at right, to fit the bank’s needs. The bank is currently celebrating its 100th anniversary. 
Courtesy photos Above, the State Savings Bank operated in the same building from 1917 until 1940. At that time, the bank ceased renting the building and purchased it, subsequently performing major interior and exterior remodeling. Even more remodeling was completed in 1948 to accommodate the bank’s growing customer base. In 1976, the building was again revamped, at right, to fit the bank’s needs. The bank is currently celebrating its 100th anniversary. Courtesy photos

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