Comanche National Bank, It’s Been 125 Years!

I’ve written in a hundred times, and many of you have read it that many times as well. However, when you have a local business that has been around for 125 years, it all bears repeating as part of their birthday celebration, right?

Just another day of community banking in 1901 in Comanche, Texas.

Just another day of community banking in 1901 in Comanche, Texas.

“On the evening of December 19, 1889, a group of local businessmen met at the home of J.B. Chilton to establish the bank and elect a board of directors.  Minutes of the organizational meeting declared the name of the bank to be “The Comanche National Bank” with a capital stock of $50,000.00. Chilton was elected president; T.J. Holmsley, first vice president; W.B. Cunningham, cashier; and R.V. Neely, assistant cashier.

“Other original stockholders included Capt. James Cunningham, E.L. Shropshire, J.R. Thomas, J.D. Campbell, F.M. Browne, J.W. Greene, R.W. Turner, E. Rotan and M.B. Lloyd.

“The years of 1890 and 1891 saw extensive construction in Comanche along with general business expansion.  Right-of-way for the railroad had been cleared and the first train would arrive in 1891. The County had let the contract for a handsome new courthouse, which was almost finished during 1891.

“With the extra craftsmen available, it was a propitious time for The Comanche National Bank to build as well, and construction began on a new bank building on the southwest corner of the square. Although the courthouse contractors did not build the bank building, the Scottish stone cutters, imported to work on the courthouse, also made the handsome trim which may be seen on the original bank building today.

“By 1969 the bank had grown total assets to eight million dollars, outgrowing the original facility that had been occupied since 1892.  In that year they purchased property at 200 W. Central Avenue and built a new modern banking facility that was occupied until 1987.

“In 1987 with total assets of 68 million dollars,  the bank moved into the remodeled “Dudley Bros.” building at its current location, 100 East Central.

“On August 11, 2006, Comanche National Corporation, the holding company for The Comanche National Bank, purchased Palo Pinto County based First National Bank of Santo.  At that time Comanche National had grown to 122 million dollars in total assets and the newly acquired First National Bank of Santo was 68 million dollars.  In 2008, the two banks united with combined assets of 190 million dollars.

“In 2011, the bank expanded its presence in Parker County with a new location in Cool, Texas and in 2013 expanded into Jack County with a new location in Jacksboro, Texas.

“The bank now has seven locations including Comanche, Santo, Palo Pinto, Millsap, Mingus, Cool, and Jacksboro. Today, total assets equal 315 million dollars.

“In its one hundred twenty-five year history, the bank has had only eight presidents and five Chairmen of the Board.  Presidents include John B. Chilton, who served as president during the 33 years of his 42 year association with the bank, T.J. Holmsley, William C. Chilton, Jack Moore, R.K. Waggoner, Jerry L. Vines, Kenneth E. Hagood and Jeff D. Stewart.  Chairmen include W.C. Chilton, T.J. Williams, Dr. J.C. Terrell, W.L. Nix and W. Kendall Nix.”

 2014 Directors

Kendall Nix       James H. Dudley       John E. Dudley      Elton McDonald      Jeff Stewart
David Beene      Ellison Carter            Frazier Clark           L.D. Cox                    Myrt Jackson

About Fredda Jones

Fredda Davis Jones was raised “in the country” in Comanche County and learned very early that creativity and innovation are traits that can flourish even in small-town Texas and that with enough effort, indeed nothing is impossible, including being married to the same man for over 40 years! Rickey and Fredda have 2 children, 5 grandchildren, and a crazy life that includes sitting in the bleachers several times a week. The rest of her time is spent creating great content for and marketing small-town Texas.
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