Richland State Bank opened its doors to the public in early September 1902, growing and progressing with the community over the past century. When we opened our doors we promised to be a pillar of union, justice and confidence in Richland Parish. Our history has been intertwined with that of the people, prospering side by side. In 1902, our deposits were recorded at $24,695.93. Today, one hundred and eleven years later, our deposits are over $225,000,000.00!
The founders of our bank, who served as officers and board members, participated strongly in various organizations and events. These men were: C. J. Ellis, Sr., W. N. Traylor, A. E. Kennedy, W. J. Coleman, A. S. England, R. B. Mhoon, George Wesley Smith, Charles Titche and Dr. H. B. Wren. A distinguished list of presidents have guided and directed us: Judge Carey J. Ellis (1902-48), Fred Morgan (1948-74), James Craig (1974-79), Bernard Waite (1980-87), Emmett L. Brown, Jr. (1988-98) and Jerome Vascocu (1998-present).
Over the years, Richland State Bank has remained strong. The arrival of boll weevils in 1906 was closely followed by a panic in 1907-08. The term, "Land Poor", applied: there was a shortage of money. Richland State Bank put in many extra hours making sure that our customers did not suffer because of it. At the time of the great flood in 1927, we stayed open for our customers and our staff helped put sandbags out in the community. During the seven-year-cycles in the 1920's, many farmers were unable to pay their debts. Richland State Bank did not turn its back, but rather worked with them. While other institutions around the world were failing during the hardest years of the Great Depression in the 1930's, we stayed open and worked with our customers, making sure that no one would lose their savings. Several years later, during World War II, Richland State Bank contributed to the war effort by promoting U.S. War Bonds. Over the years, our staff has been strong supporters in the community, doing what they could, helping out where they were needed.
Often when people think of Richland State Bank, the name "Fred Morgan" comes to mind. Hired as an employee of the bank in 1907, Mr. Morgan worked and progressed, becoming President, CEO and eventually Chairman of the Board. Through his seventy years of service at the bank, Mr. Morgan helped guide us through our joyous times as well as our tragic ones, such as WWI and WWII, the Great Depression and later the Vietnam War. Aside from his work at the bank, Mr. Morgan also started an insurance business in town, now run by his grandson, and was heavily involved in both local and civic affairs. He also served on the Board of Alderman in Rayville, and in 1965 received the 50 Year Continuous Service Award by the Louisiana Bankers' Association. He will always be remembered fondly and thought of as one of the greatest contributors of Richland State Bank and to Richland Parish as a whole.
Due to the efforts of our founders, presidents, officers and staff, helping through both good times and bad, Richland State Bank has made changes, evolving with the times. We enlarged our bank, added branches in Rayville, Mangham, Minden, West Monroe, Monroe, Oak Grove and Bastrop as well as adding modern conveniences for our customers. Automated Teller Machines, debit cards, drive-up windows, banking by phone, Internet Banking, Online Bill Payer Service, Remote Deposit Capture as well as new and improved account types and products. The most recent technological convenience we have introduced to enhance your banking experience is Mobile Banking for Smart Phones. We even have our own Richland State Bank iPhone and Android applications that are available for download to your device. Although much has changed over the years, one thing has been and shall remain the same - we are your bank, and we thank you. Our strength and success comes from you, our customers and our community. We are truly your hometown bank, and we belong together!