The BANK OF MAYVILLE was the first bank founded in the Village of Mayville in 1885. Joseph and Thomas J. Eveland (brothers) and Henry Knickerbocker were encouraged to provide a banking service to the Mayville community by Senator E. G. Fox who provided a corner of his department store for the operation of the bank. This building was located on the same site as the present main office of the bank at the southwest corner of Fulton and Turner streets.
By 1887 the bank was prosperous enough to support the construction of a new building located at 6101 Fulton Street, across the street from its original headquarters in the Fox Department Store. The new building was two stories, housing the law offices of T. J. Eveland upstairs and the first story remained the office of the bank until 1957, a period of 70 years.
Abel Eveland came from New York to Michigan in 1891 to join his uncles, Joe and Tom, as Cashier of the Bank of Mayville. In 1901, the Evelands opened the Bank of Fostoria in the neighboring town of Fostoria. Abel became a prominent citizen in Fostoria and remained there operating the bank until his death in 1931.
In 1892, Henry Knickerbocker sold his interest in the Bank of Mayville to the Evelands, making them the sole owners of the bank until November 1915 when the Evelands received approval by the State Banking Commission to convert the Bank of Mayville from a private bank to a state bank. This led them to change the bank’s name to Mayville State Bank.
Between 1915 and 1925, MAYVILLE STATE BANK more than doubled in size. Maurice C. Eveland, son of Joseph Eveland, had joined his father in the Bank of Mayville in 1911 at the age of 18 while he was still attending school. Due to the poor health of his father, Maurice was soon placed in charge of the daily operations of the bank. He became Assistant Cashier in 1915, Vice President in 1917 and President in 1922 upon the death of Joseph Eveland. Maurice then remained President until 1949 except for a period during which he served as State Banking Commissioner.
In 1923 the Bank of Fostoria also incorporated as a State bank, the FOSTORIA STATE BANK. Hugh Eveland had joined his father, Abel, in the active operation of the bank in 1918, and then continued to manage the bank after the death of Abel in 1931. In 1937, the stockholders of Fostoria State Bank decided to close the bank. The depositors were paid in full and assets were either liquidated or transferred to Mayville State Bank. Hugh Eveland then became Executive Vice President at Mayville State Bank, and Fostoria was left without a bank until 1960 when the original office was re-opened as a branch of Mayville State Bank. The branch manager from 1960 until her retirement in 1981 was Hulda Haver, Hugh Eveland’s daughter.
In addition to the closing of Fostoria State Bank, 1937 signified the year the Mayville State Bank was robbed for the only time in its history. On October 6, 1937, the bank was held-up by two bandits and sustained a loss of $2,391.10. The bandits were arrested within 5 days in Missouri, but it is not known if all of the money was recovered. One other time, as told by Clara Eveland, it was rumored that there was a group of bank robbers in the Mayville area, and Maurice Eveland and several others took their private firearms to the bank and the rooftops of the surrounding buildings in preparation for a robbery attempt. The robbers, however, were captured by police at a residence between Mayville and Lapeer.
The 1930’s brought the Great Depression and the failure of almost one half of the banks throughout the United States. In 1933 President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered a 4-day national banking holiday. MAYVILLE STATE BANK and Maurice Eveland gained some notoriety during this time by remaining open for business. As told by Maurice’s widow, Clara, Maurice was in Flint at the time he heard of the order to close the banks. He immediately called back to Walter Hunt at the bank and ordered him to keep the bank open, and then he went directly to Lansing to see the Governor. There Maurice explained to the Governor that he was not going to close his bank as it was a sound bank and there was no reason for it to close. He was advised by the Governor that the holiday was the law, and that the State Police would be sent to Mayville if necessary to close the bank. Maurice persisted, however; the State Police did not come, and Mayville State Bank was one of a very few banks to remain open through the bank holiday.
Maurice Eveland was appointed State Banking Commissioner by Governor VanWagoner from May, 1941, through December, 1942. During this time he took a leave of absence from his position as President of Mayville State Bank in order to avoid any conflict of interest, and Hugh Eveland became the Chief Executive Officer of the bank. Maurice Eveland’s reputation as a banker and his activity within the Democratic Party continued to grow and at the end of 1948, he resigned as President of the bank to again become State Banking Commissioner and Hugh Eveland became President and continued to serve in that capacity until 1968.
In 1953, the Evelands decided to sell their controlling interest in Mayville State Bank, ending 68 years of controlling ownership by the Eveland family.
In 1956 Mayville State Bank purchased an old filling station across the street from the bank at 6104 Fulton Street, the same site of the E.G. Fox Department Store in which the bank was originally founded. A new bank building was completed in 1957, and the bank officially moved into its new quarters in November, 1957.
At the end of 1968 Hugh Eveland retired after 50 years of service with the bank. He remained as a director until his death in 1976. George E. Sullivan was elected President and an effort was made by the bank’s board of directors and officers to place the stock within the Mayville community; this was accomplished by 1974 and marked the first major expansion in the number of stockholders and community ownership in the bank.
The economic downturn of the early ‘80s and high interest rates caused many loan defaults, and banking became a much riskier business than it had been allowed to be since the 1930s. Many banks in Michigan sought the protection of selling out to larger banks or bank holding companies, but Mayville State Bank remained committed to being an independent, community bank. Marketing changes were made to insure the bank’s profitability, and a continuing effort was made to keep the bank’s stock within the community.
Ross G. Scott resigned as President and director in September, 1981. Gary A. Haas was then elected as President and Chief Executive Officer and a director; Brad S. Sullivan (son of George E. Sullivan) was elected Vice President. The bank’s total assets and deposits as of the beginning of 1985 had more than doubled in the 10 years since 1975. The list of stockholders had grown to approximately 100, with no one individual or family having a controlling interest, and a majority of the stock owned within the Mayville – Fostoria community.
The 1990’s were very successful for the bank and resulted in two new banking locations. The first new office opened in nearby Millington during the late summer of 1994. This full service facility has proven to be a valuable asset to the bank as well as to the community of Millington. In 1997, Mayville State Bank opened an office inside Wingert’s Food Center and it, too, has been well received. This full service facility has earned a niche in the community by being open seven days a week.
In 2005, Shelly Rutter was elected as the first woman president of Mayville State Bank. She continues to lead the bank in accordance with the original purpose stated by Joseph Eveland in 1885, to serve the community and the safety of its depositors.
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