HOME TOWN BANKING AT ITS BEST
The State Bank of
Townsend opened in 1899 and has been serving its neighbors and friends in
Broadwater County ever since. Through good times and bad – the great
depression, drought, rain and fire, we’ve been here for you and will
continue to be here for you. It was inevitable, Broadwater County is growing
and we are growing with it. We offer you good, honest and courteous service
with a smile. Stop by and have a cup of coffee with us today!
Three years after Wisconsin native John Patrick Kearns graduated from Bayless
Business College in Dubuque, Iowa, he traveled west to explore career
possibilities in Montana. A year later, the 27-year-old entrepreneur moved his
young family to Broadwater County and helped launch The State Bank of Townsend.
Thus began a legacy of family-owned, independent banking which continues in its
opening capital of $25,000.00, The State Bank of Townend listed as officers on
its inaugural day – June 1, 1899 - President J.E.
Kanouse, Vice-President A.W. Schreiber, Head Cashier and Major Stockholder J.P.
Kearns and Assistant Cashier Louis Rotwitt.
J.P. Kearns assumed presidency of the Bank in 1917, continuing his 51 year
career at the State Bank of Townsend. Four of J.P and Sarah Mary Kearns’
children went on to hold positions at the Bank, the youngest son, James W.
Kearns, carried on the family tradition. working more than 50 years in the
The bank moved into it’s new building in 1918 and continues to occupy this space
J.P. and James W. worked shoulder to shoulder at the bank, through the
Depression, past World War II, and in 1950, at the age of 78, J.P. died of a
heart attack. At the time of his death, according to his obituary, he was the
oldest working bank president in the state of Montana.
James W. Kearns assumed the helm and ran the Bank even longer—retiring at age 84
in 1987. He died a year after he retired.
In 1961, J. William (Bill) Kearns, Jr., the older of James W. and Ossia Kearns’
two sons, became the Assistant Cashier at State Bank. A year before his father’s
death, Bill became Chairman of the bank his grandfather helped create. He continues
to serve as Chairman today.
The State Bank of Townsend continues its tradition of full service community
banking with a well trained and friendly staff willing to listen to your needs.