Our name says it all... First Bank was the first bank in Harvey County. Its doors first opened in June 1873 as the Harvey County Savings Bank, located in a frame building at 604 Main. It was founded in 1873 by Jairus Edward Neal, who arrived in Harvey County from Concordia, Iowa.

In 1879 a group of Newtonians bought majority stock, and the name was changed to the Newton City Bank. On August 8, 1882, the Bank received its charter as the First National Bank of Newton and moved its offices to 526 Main. In 1889, it purchased the First State Bank of Newton.

In 1890, the First National Bank of Newton was the only bank to remain open of the seven Newton banks then in existence. On November 20, 1890, Sam Lehman, President, went to the National Bank of Commerce in Kansas City with collateral for a $20,000 loan. The next morning customers saw the $20,000 in cash and decided their funds were safe. During the panic of 1893, First National Bank of Newton returned the favor to the National Bank of Commerce by leaving its deposit balance intact while other banks withdrew their money.

First National Bank of Newton purchased the Home State Bank in February 1914. A disastrous fire occurred on August 4, 1914, which consumed the building the Bank had occupied since 1873. The Bank temporarily relocated to the former Railroad Building at 5th and Main while its facility at 6th and Main was rebuilt. In 1915, the Bank acquired ownership of the location at 5th and Main. The Bank remained there until it moved to its present location at 128 E. Broadway on February 19, 1958.

Members of the Chandler banking family of Wichita purchased a substantial interest in the First National Bank in 1967. On December 27, 1978, the Bank changed its charter from a National Bank to a State Bank, and established its present name First Bank of Newton, commonly known as First Bank. The Bank is supervised jointly by the Kansas State Banking Department and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Throughout its history, First Bank has remained dedicated to true community banking, focused on treating customers with respect and fairness. The bank's board of directors and management team is committed to Harvey County communities, supporting consistent employee participation in community based education, business development, social and civic organizations.


1882 - First National Bank
S. Lehman

1912 - First National Bank
D.R. Siefkin

1915 - First National Bank
Col. P.M. Hoisington

1933 - First National Bank
J. W. Inghram

1947 - First National Bank
Everett McCann

1965 - First National Bank
L. J. Nelson

1967 - First National Bank
James B. Decker

1980 - First Bank of Newton
Don W. Schuneman

1988 - First Bank of Newton
A. Earl Fort

1989 - First Bank of Newton
Frank L. Spangler

1993 - First Bank of Newton
Ray A. Penner

Harvey County's Oldest Bank... Established 1873