Topeka: Hall Litho Co., 1897 / 1900. 1st Printing. 2 pieces of ephera: 1897 Trade card, Washoe County Bank Quarterly Statement, printed both sides; Washoe Count Bank, 4 pg brochure. Brochure with bank image to p. 1. Brochure: 5-15/16" x 3-1/2". Card: 2-11/16" x 4-15/16". Now housed in a clear archiaval mylar sleeve. Some signs of use, a couple prior owner notations, Very Good. Item #51222
The Washoe County bank began as "the IOOF Lodge/Reno Savings Bank, on the southwest corner of Virginia and Second Streets. The two-story Italianate-style building was designed by the local architect John S. Sturgeon to house the fraternal order on the second floor, and the Reno Savings Bank and Sanders & Co. furniture store on the ground floor. The Odd Fellows celebrated the laying of the cornerstone on August 30, 1876 and the bank opened for business in January 1877.
Reno Savings Bank was organized in April 1876. Its officers and board of directors read like a Who’s Who of Reno’s movers and shakers, including Myron Lake (Reno's unofficial founder), James Kinkead, George Huffaker, and J. S. Shoemaker. However, by 1880, rumors of “something fishy” began to spread. The bank was closed and the manager, Colonel Kinkead, was tried for embezzlement, although the case was ultimately dismissed.
In 1887, the First National Bank of Nevada, looking to expand, purchased the Odd Fellows Hall for $20,000. Said to be “as solid as Mount Rose,” First National Bank opened on May 2, 1887 with officers C. T. and D. A. Bender, and G. W. Mapes. Two years later, the bank engaged prolific Nevada builder George Holesworth to construct an annex and a two-story cast-iron façade, which was the current fashion for commercial buildings. The façade, the first to be manufactured in Reno, was cast by John Michels of Reno Iron Works. The columns were a copy of those on the Powning Building down the block.
In 1896, the bank dropped its national charter and changed its name to Washoe County Bank. Within six years, the bank had outgrown its quarters and undertook a major remodeling of the façade and the interior. The elaborate Italianate exterior was replaced by a more formal Renaissance-Revival-inspired surface." [Reno Historical website].
This former structure is what is pictured on p. 1 of the brochure, before the Italianate exterior was replaced in 1902.