|THE SCHENECTADY DIGITAL HISTORY ARCHIVE
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The 1st National Bank of Scotia produced a commemorative calendar to mark their 75th anniversary. We have made the historical photographs available here with their permission.
The image file sizes are noted next to each link.
1st National Bank of Scotia
The first office of the Glenville Bank was located at 124 Mohawk Avenue at a site next to what is now the Dragon Garden Restaurant. The staff was made up of three employees, and cash had to be taken over to Schenectady nightly for storage in a vault.
The bank had barely begun to operate when the need for larger quarters became obvious. Thus in 1925, William T. B. Mynderse was retained to design the original structure located at 201 Mohawk Avenue. The new building opened its doors for business on January 28, 1926.
The new building at the corner of Mohawk Avenue and Ten Broeck Street boasted a vault that made messenger runs across the river to store cash unnecessary. This also provided customers with additional services, including safe deposit boxes.
Like most banks, progress at the Glenville Bank was slowed by the Great Depression, but it was never in danger of closing. An expected run on the bank never developed and as the country moved out of the depression, rapid growth was resumed.
In 1948, the year the bank celebrated its 25th Anniversary, plans were begun for an addition that would more than double the size of the existing building. One of the most exciting features of the enlarged bank was "auto banking," the area's first drive-in window.
In addition to auto banking, a sidewalk teller was opened to facilitate speed on busy days and accommodate women with baby carriages. Pneumatic tubes were installed to send transactions requiring clerical reference to the main area of the bank.
In September of 1955, the bank announced plans to build its first branch in Niskayuna. With expansion on the horizon, the bank petitioned to change its name and became 1st National Bank of Scotia, as it is known today.
Once branch banking began, it wasn't long before further plans for expansion were on the table. During the 1960s, three new branches were opened. The Colonie Office, shown here, opened in 1960. In 1965 the Guilderland Office opened, with the Glenville Office following in 1966.
In the summer of 1962, 1st National Bank of Scotia became the first bank in the United States to use an electronic computer to service savings accounts. By 1969, the bank installed its own computer, building another addition to house the computer operations department.
In 1973, the bank was ready to celebrate the 50th Anniversary by opening two new branches; a temporary facility opened on Erie Boulevard in Schenectady, and an office in Saratoga Springs. In 1976, our nation's Bicentennial, the permanent facility at 120 Erie Boulevard opened.
Branch expansion in the 1980s included a unique branch arrangement with the General Electric Corporate Research and Development Center when the bank was invited to open a branch within the facility in 1983 [shown here]. In 1989, our ninth branch was established at 782 Albany Street, Schenectady.
As 1st National Bank of Scotia enters its 75th year of operation, it continues to grow and expand. In August of 1997 a tenth office was opened in Rotterdam at 2695 Hamburg Street. More expansion is anticipated as other locations are sought for future branch sites.
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