Farmers State Bank in Winthrop brings its customers the best of both worlds – rock solid security and old-fashioned customer service, as well as a cautiously progressive approach into banking conveniences of the 21st Century.
This friendly, family-owned bank has stood firm for over 100 years. State-chartered in 1915 to serve local miners and ranchers, Farmers was one of few banks to remain open through the Great Depression. During the 1930s, Farmers’ vault guarded gold bullion brought down from nearby mountain mines.
Over 50 years ago Frank Buell brought his own conservative Depression-Era survival skills from Seattle to Winthrop. Looking to walk away from hectic, huge demands as Executive Vice-President of the old Seattle First National Bank, Buell and his wife Ann bought Farmers in 1964. They "retired" to lead the small bank in 1967.
Today Buell’s descendents follow his conservative management philosophy: stay small, but be aggressive in solving problems for their customers.
Management and staff are geared to offer all the convenience of a big bank, but with an informal hometown atmosphere. Lending decisions are made in-house, and rules may be flexible, within the law, to meet individual circumstances.
The appearance of this unique community bank, on the boardwalk of an old-western town, even depicts old-fashioned values.
All these factors have kept Farmers on a firm foundation while larger banks scramble to stay solvent in difficult times. In fact this third-smallest Washington bank, with $35 million in assets, has earned the top five-star rating from independent analysts. This attests to Farmers’ strength in assets, capital, net worth and ability to meet demands on deposits.
In recent years, Farmers has been adopting modern banking features. Debit cards and on-line banking bring customers – for those who want this – easier access to their accounts. Farmers’ clients can now get money at the nearest ATM or access their account online to pay bills or check their balance 24 hours a day, seven days a week.