The Bank of Stockton celebrated its 150th anniversary with cake, candles and gifts on Friday, and while the bank has seen many technological advances over the years, its customer-driven, family-oriented service has remained the same since 1867.
“The Bank of Stockton reminds me of how banking used to be and should still be,” said Turlock branch manager Terri Vines. “You walk in here, and everyone knows you. The community is what drives your bank, so you should give back to them however you can.”
Vines has worked at the Bank of Stockton since 2004 and in the Turlock branch since 2012, but it was in 2003 that Bank of Stockton acquired Turlock Commerce Bank, bringing a new bank location to the corner of South Golden State Boulevard and Crane Avenue. Since then, the bank has seen many changes in just 14 years, like the launch of mobile banking, the introduction of Image ATMs and a Bank of Stockton app complete with mobile depositing. In 2017, the bank consolidated the Turlock Commerce Bank into Bank of Stockton, giving the location the same name as its counterparts.
“I enjoy everything about working here,” said Vines. “The staff here are friendly, like family, and the whole town is wonderful. It’s got a small town feel and a lot of good people.”
Bank of Stockton began offering bank services just two years after the end of the Civil War, and has since gone from keeping bank records with hand-written ledgers to the mobile banking systems customers love today.
In 1980, the bank expanded outside of Stockton for the first time with branches in Lodi, Tracy, Manteca and Elk Grove, and in that same year the organization also welcomed the installation of its first ATMs. In 1995, Bank of Stockton became the first community bank west of the Mississippi to offer internet banking and launch a bank website.
A lot has changed for the bank since customers used to travel to make deposits by way of horse on a dirt road, said CEO and Chairman of the Board Douglass M. Eberhardt.
“Today, our customers can enjoy technological innovations like our mobile app with remote deposit, but regardless of how our customers like to bank, our tradition of personalized service, strength and commitment to the communities we serve have remained constants throughout our history,” said Eberhardt. “The Bank of Stockton has weathered panics, recessions, the Great Depression, two World Wars and many cyclical down-turns. The bank’s growth and prosperity is attributed to a history of sound banking management principles, generations of loyal customers and many dedicated employees over the years.”
Today, Bank of Stockton serves as the oldest bank in California still operating under its original chapter, with 19 branches in 16 cities spanning nine contiguous counties. When Turlock Commerce Bank, along with Modesto Commerce Bank, were acquired in 2003, the new additions added over $330 million in assets and increased the banks total assets to approximately $1.75 billion. Today, Bank of Stockton is $2.9 billion in assets strong.
“It’s not every day that you get to celebrate the distinction of serving customers for 150 years. We are very proud of this milestone and it is fun to be making history as we celebrate history,” said bank President Douglass M. Eberhardt II. “We look forward to serving customers in our communities for at least another 150 years.”