Guide to the Commercial Bank of Vancouver, Washington Records 1888-1911
Cage 18

Summary Information

Repository
Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries
Creator
Commercial Bank of Vancouver, Washington
Title
Commercial Bank of Vancouver, Washington Records
ID
Cage 18
Date [inclusive]
1888-1911
Extent
66.0 containers.
General Physical Description note
9 linear feet of shelf space.
Language
English
Abstract
Correspondence, minute and account books, and ledgers of the Commercial Bank of Vancouver. Correspondents include Samuel M. Beard, President.

Preferred Citation note

[Item Description]. Cage 18, Guide to the Commercial Bank of Vancouver, Washington Records. Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries, Pullman, WA.

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Biographical/Historical note

The Commercial Bank of Vancouver, Washington, was organized under territorial law in 1888 and continued in operation until December, 1910, when it closed amid controversy and suspicion. The bank's primary area of service was retail trade and small manufacturing in the Vancouver-Portland area. It also undertook considerable investment in land, some of a speculative nature. This combination of policies proved somewhat unstable throughout the bank's history, and, as a consequence, there arose differing views among the management. This resulted at times in rather drastic corrective measures such as the reduction of the capital stock or changes among the officers and directors.

The early years were dominated by Samuel M. Beard, for many years Cashier and then President until 1906. It was he who seem to have been the author of the investment policies of the bank. (Other business activities of S. M. Beard are documented in the papers and records of the Beard Fruit Company and the Vancouver Creamery Company in the Washington State University Library.) His successor, H. C. Phillip, continued these policies, which by 1910 were proving disastrous. Sensing the bank to be in difficulty, the state bank examiner, J. L. Mohundro, intervened and attempted to reorganize the bank and keep it operating. Feeling that the officers of the bank had deceived him, the examiner finally applied for a receiver and the bank went into a very involved liquidation, In addition, the President and Cashier were indicted for concealing the financial condition of the bank as well as illegally accepting deposits. After two trials, the President was acquitted, the Cashier's case was dropped, and the state bank examiner's office had its powers clarified by the legislature.

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Scope and Contents note

Correspondence, minute and account books, and ledgers of the Commercial Bank of Vancouver, 1888-1911.

The papers of the Commercial Bank of Vancouver at Washington State University are far from complete. There are, however, enough to document the general policies, practices and problemS of the bank. In addition, the papers are more than sufficient as a representative sample which could be used to illustrate some of the banking practices of the early 20th century in Washington State. However, their incompleteness leaves considerable portions of the specific history of the Commercial Bank in doubt, especially the complicated series of events surrounding the closing of the bank.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries © ca. 1970

http://www.wsulibs.wsu.edu/masc
Terrell Library
P.O. Box 645610
Pullman, WA, 99164-5610
509-335-6691
mascref@wsu.edu

Conditions Governing Access note

This collection is open for research use.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Commercial Bank of Vancouver --Archives

Personal Name(s)

  • Beard, Samuel M.

Subject(s)

  • Banks and banking--Washington (State)--Vancouver--Records and correspondence.
  • Business, Industry, and Labor
  • Washington (State)

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Collection Inventory

item

Minute books, articles of incorporation, by-laws, director's oaths, real estate papers 1888-1911   50 items.

1

Letterbooks 

item

 December 18, 1889-October 13, 1890 

2

 August 9, 1893-October 6, 1894 

3

 September 17, 1895-June 25, 1896 

4

 March 9, 1897-February 9, 1898 

5

 February 10, 1898-February 15, 1899 

6

 February 16, 1899-Febrary 6, 1900 

7

 October 7, 1902-August 14, 1903 

8

 January 18, 1910-May 31, 1910 

9

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item

Letterbook of S. M. Beard re: Bank correspondence and other businesses with which Beard was associated April 8, 1899-September 23, 1904 

10

Journal (fund accounts and daily balances) 

item

 January 2, 1890-August 1, 1900 

11

 February 9, 1892-March 16, 1895 

12

 March 18, 1895-April 23, 1898 

13

 April 25, 1898-June 11, 1901 

14

 August 2, 1904-September 25, 1907 

15

 September 26, 1907-November 12, 1910 

16

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Depositors Balance Book 

item

 September 1, 1892-June 6, 1893 

17

 June 15, 1893-June 6, 1894 

18

 June 7, 1894-May 8, 1895 

19

 May 9, 1895-January 15, 1896 

20

 January 16, 1896-January 8, 1897 

21

 January 9, 1897-December 29, 1897 

22

 December 30, 1897-December 23, 1898 

23

 December 24, 1898-December 23, 1899 

24

 December 26, 1899-January 28, 1901 

25

 January 29, 1901-November 13, 1901 

26

 November 14, 1901-May 31, 1902 

27

 Jane 2, 1902-December 13, 1902 

28

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Collections and remittances (interbank) 

item

(Chase National Bank, New York) June 30, 1893-October 2, 1900 

29

(Bank of California, Portland) June 21, 1907-October 5, 1907 

30

(Bank of California, Portland) October 5, 1907-January 30, 1908 

31

(Bank of California, Portland) January 30, 1908-May 16, 1908 

32

(Bank of California, Portland May 16, 1908-September 10, 1908 

33

(Bank of California, Portland) September 10, 1908-January 11, 1909 

34

(Bank of California, Portland) January 12, 1909-May 17, 1909 

35

(Mixed and local) September 23, 1907-June 29, 1908 

36

(Bank of California, Portland) January 23, 1908-November 26, 1909 

37

(Chase National Bank, New York) October 29, 1908-February 17, 1910 

38

(Mixed and local) July 7, 1908-June 23, 1909 

39

(Local Banks) June 26, 1909-June 23, 1910 

40

(Bank of California, Portland) January 23, 1910-October 31, 1910 

41

(Wells Fargo Nevada National Bank, San Francisco) March 23, 1909-January 28, 1910 

42

(Bank of California, Portland) May 18, 1909-September 28, 1909 

43

(Bank of California, Portland) September 27, 1909-February 7, 1910 

44

(Bank of California, Portland) February 7, 1910-June 23, 1910 

45

(Bank of California, Seattle) August 4, 1909-December 17, 1910 

46

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Checks and Deposits Register 

item

 February 10, 1897-August 15, 1898 

47

 February 17, 1903-November 3, 1903 

48

 November 21, 1905-May 18, 1906 

49

 April 5, 1907-June 18, 1907 

50

 June 11, 1908-October 21, 1908 

51

 October 22, 1908-February 18, 1909 

52

 June 29, 1908-March 4, 1909 

53

 February 19, 1909-June 11, 1909 

54

 November 1, 1909-March 29, 1910 

55

(includes some examiner records) March 30, 1910-June 15, 1910 

56

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item

Paid Loans Register 1908-1911 

57

Depositor's Specimen Signature Register 

58

Collections Register 1901 

59

Draft Register 1910-1904 

60
items

Checks Register (these records may be of one of the associated businesses conducted by bank officers) 1891-1895 1908 1910 

61-66