Like Negaunee, Ishpeming possessed several private banks long before chartered banks made their advent into the banking circles of the city, and it is as true of Ishpeming as of Negaunee and the balance of the county that the
history of these first private banks is almost completely obliterated by the passage of time. The Peninsula bank, holding a state
charter granted in 1887, and thus the oldest state bank in the county, was organized on October 27, that year, principally through the efforts of William Sedgewick, who first directed the policies of the bank. The affairs of the bank have been in careful
hands since the time of its inception. Now capitalized for $100,000, the Peninsula bank stands as one of the most substantial and successful financial institutions of the county, and its present officers
are John Kandelin, president; Dr. W. S. Picotte, vice-president; Peter Handberg, cashier; and John Jaaski, J. E. Lereggen, and Roy Stansbury, assistant cashiers.
A private bank had been conducted in Ishpeming for many years by D. F. Wadsworlh & company, but its failure came about 1883. A second bank, the Marquette County bank, a private concern, was then started at the same location but continued only a
few months. With the failure of this second private bank, preparations were made for the organization of a chartered concern,
the result being the establishment of the Ishpeming National bank on December 25, 1900, with a capital of $100,000, as it is
today. The national bank was opened in the same location as that occupied by the two unsuccessful private concerns, and subsequently the building was remodeled in 1914 to prevent the fires
that had threatened the bank with disaster on several occasions.
After seventeen years successful operation as the Ishpeming National bank, the name was changed to the present one of the Miners' National bank. The first directors were F. Braasted, M. M. Duncan, D. T. Morgan, Alexander Maitland, H. O. Young. D. McVichia, Walter Fitch, W. H. Johnson, and A. B. Miner, and
the first officers were F. Braasted, president; D. McVichia, vice- president; A. B. Miner, cashier; and H. S. Thompson, assistant
cashier. The present bank officials are M. M. Duncan, president; Ole Walseth and F. E. Keese, vice-president; C. H. Moss, cashier; and O. G. Aas, George Hathaway, and H. M. Lally, assistant cashiers.
The Gwinn State Savings bank was organized September 29, 1908, with a capital of $25,000, and headed by these officers: William G. Mather, president; W. F. Hopkins, vice-president; H. H. McMillan, cashier; and M. M. Duncan, C. V. R. Townsend, W. G. Mather, W. F. Hopkins, and G. R. Jackson, directors. The present officers of the bank are William G. Mather, president; G. R. Jackson, vice-president; R. J. Jeffery, cashier; and T. H.
Williamson, assistant cashier. During the eighteen years that the bank has been established in that community, it has proved a great aid to the transacting of business in that part of the county
and has been a material aid to the development of that region.
The Republic State bank, located in the village of that name, was organized August 1, 1912, and opened for business soon after that date. It has been capitalized for $25,000 during its existence, and its first officers and directors were W. A. Siebenthal, president; Louis Levine, vice-president; F. W. Lawrence, cashier;
and W. A. Siebenthal, Louis Levine, Carl Peterson, Walter Ericson, Charles Hooper, William Kelly, and C. Meilleur, directors.
The service of this bank to the community and section of the county in which it is located cannot be underestimated, and conducted as it is upon a conservative yet progressive basis, it is
regarded as an exceptionally solid financial institution and an asset to the banking conditions of the county.
Source: A history of the upper peninsula of Michigan.
Author: Fuller, George N. (George Newman), 1873-1957. Pg 80-81