Collections Carousel – First National Bank of Little Falls Coin Bank

First National Bank Coin Bank
First National Bank of Little Falls, Minnesota, Coin Bank, Circa 1960

Established in 1889, the First National Bank of Little Falls, Minnesota, was the first national bank to be organized in Morrison County. The bank’s founding was a mark of the rapid growth of the progressive central Minnesota community. Many of the original incorporators were influential men with ties throughout the city and state – M. M. Williams, William Davidson, Charles A. Lindbergh, Sr.,  Alexander R. Davidson, Peter W. Balke, Marc Hubbert, Charles H. Hubbert, Herbert C. Garvin, Matheros E. Trumer and Andrew D. Davidson. Located on the northeast corner of First Street and East Broadway in downtown Little Falls, the two-story cream brick building (currently painted gray) was the second home of the institution, which originally was located across the street from its present location in what is known as the Trebby Building. In 1999, after 110 years of private ownership, the bank merged with U. S. Bank of Minneapolis, Minnesota.

This 4″ square heavy metal mechanical coin bank was a premium given away to encourage new customers. It was manufactured by Banthrico, a company based in Chicago, Illinois, that was established in 1931 by Jerome Aronson and Joseph Eisendrath. Banthrico quickly became known as a premiere manufacturer of coin banks, creating banks in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, including animals, cars, architecture and famous people. The First National Bank of Little Falls coin bank was one of the company’s more subdued cast metal styles. Two slots on the top of the bank are for inserting coins of various sizes. Inserting a coin in the smaller slot (.75″ wide) operated a mechanism inside that changed the date. Banthrico made coin banks until 1985, when the company was sold to Toystalgia.

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