The Bank of Fincastle opened in 1875 and is the oldest bank in Botetourt County.
History of The Bank of Fincastle
The Farmers Bank preceded The Bank of Fincastle in serving area residents. Farmers Bank began serving the public in 1856. Unfortunately, with the beginning of the War Between the States in 1861, Farmers Bank converted its assets to Confederate securities. In 1865, after Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox, its Confederate assets became worthless. The Farmers Bank, like other Virginia banks, was forced to discontinue operations.
In 1875, however, a group of local residents petitioned the District Court on September 20, to approve a new bank in Fincastle. The Honorable Henry E. Blair, Circuit Judge, approved the petition and The Bank of Fincastle was born on September 22, 1875.
It is believed that it first began operating from the small building adjacent to the old Post Office building and the present Voter Registration building on the corner of Main and Roanoke Streets. The bank remained at that location until May 8, 1908, when it moved to its current location.
Two Fincastle businesses have conducted business each workday for over 135 years. The oldest, The Fincastle Herald, began its publication in 1866 and for the past 145 years has published one paper per week. The Bank of Fincastle is the second oldest business in the area.
A strong local identity and continuity of leadership have made the bank an integral part of family and business life in our community. There have been only six presidents in the history of the bank. It is said the bank's first vice-president, Mr. S. B. Smith, kept a diary so detailed and accurate, including births and deaths that it served as proof of events not otherwise publicly recorded.
Most residents and bank patrons remember that Mr. H. M. Williamson became the Bank President in 1965, following Robert Stoner. In 1990, H.M. Williamson became Chairman of the Board and John F. Kilby became President. Both continue in those positions today.
The current Board of Directors (name and year elected):
H. M. Williamson, Chairman 1965
C. Ray Sprinkle 1972
Joseph G. Johnson 1981
J. Allen Layman 1991
Steven W. Spickard 2001
Jean R. Craft 2005 (first female Board member)
John F. Kilby 1983
The Board meets each Wednesday to review current loan requests and conducts its monthly meeting to review all bank business on the third Wednesday of each month.
The Bank of Fincastle has continued unceasing operations through two major wars, World Wars I and II, numerous economic recessions, the Great Depression of the 1930’s, and the current recession.
The Bank of Fincastle’s first Branch Bank opened in Daleville in 1969. Since that time, branches have opened at The Glebe in Daleville, Troutville, Cloverdale, Bonsack, and Bedford. Property in Bedford County has been purchased at Forrest and Moneta to construct additional branches when the economy improves.
The Bank of Fincastle has operated to satisfy its customers for over 135 years and plans to continue in an efficient and courteous manner, as a full service bank, for the next 135 years.