The Security State Bank

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Editor's note:
Thanks to James L. Arend for providing this story.

A letter dated June 8, 1920, from the Comptroller of the Currency, Treasury Department, in Washington, D.C. was received by a group of 40 local businessmen and farmers that read "The application for authority to organize The Security National Bank of Emery (later to become The Security State Bank) has been approved. Thus the inception of the present day THE SECURITY STATE BANK.

The building which originally housed the bank was a small frame building, north of the Hofer Furniture building on the east side of Main Street. The frame building has been torn down and the furniture building is now used as a warehouse.

In 1925 the bank moved into the brick building on the corner of the east side of main street which was built and occupied in 1902 by the Emery State Bank, which failed and closed in 1924 leaving the building vacant.

In 1920 there was also a third bank located on Emery's main street, namely the Farmers Bank. This bank was located in the building north of the present bank building. It was suspended in 1924 but reorganized by depositor contribution and reopened the same year. However, due to the deep depression and severe four year drought this bank closed and liquidated August 11, 1931 leaving Emery with only one of the three banks, that being The Security National Bank.

In September of 1926, C. T. Coyne, a native of Hanson county, moved to Emery and assumed the management of the bank. He had over 20 years of experience in mercantile, insurance, ranching and banking in South Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Oregon and Wyoming as the livestock loan supervisor for the Live Stock Exchange National Bank of Chicago.

In 1931 drought and financial adversities forced the closing of many banks throughout the nation. Emery, as previously mentioned, was left with only one of three banks, that being The Security National Bank, later to be known as The Security State Bank.

In 1940, with the cooperation of the State Banking Department, The Security National Bank in Emery applied for and secured a charter for an entirely new bank to be located in Alexandria, namely, The Security State Bank with a branch to be maintained in Emery. Due to the many adversities of depression and drought Alexandria had been without a bank since 1931. A new Alexandria bank opened for business July 1, 1940.

On July 1, 1946 The Security State Bank's state charter was returned to Emery and the Alexandria location applied for and secured its very own state charter as Security State Bank. This was all made possible because of the common ownership of the two locations and resulted in both Emery and Alexandria having a state chartered bank.

Having outgrown their facilities, in 1975 a new building was constructed on the west side of Emery's main street after removal of buildings previously occupied by Fox Brothers Drug Store and Tony's Locker.

On December 31, 1983 United National Bank’s branch bank in Canistota was purchased and remains a branch of Emery today.