History Scott State Bank

book open on table in library


Scott State Bank, originally named The Exchange Bank, was established in 1887.  A. R. Scott, the founder, had an iron safe in his mill office and a number of his customers would leave money in it for safekeeping. He also cashed grain checks, and in this manner he “drifted” into the banking business. He hired a cashier, Smith Walker, a Bethany native who had been working in a Decatur bank. The banking business was conducted in the mill office until the office at 108 West Main (now Shelbyville Insurance Services) was built in 1898.

The Exchange Bank continued to grow, and in 1904 the bank was incorporated and titled as it remains today, Scott State Bank. Capitalized at $30,000, the stock was owned by A.R. Scott and his wife, Mary Jane Scott, and their sons Hugh, Troy and Samuel J., with the youngest son, Smith, coming into the bank in 1907.

In 1919 Scott constructed a new building at the corner of Main and Lincoln streets where the bank remains today. Measuring 100 by 90 feet, the two story brick structure was trimmed with Indiana limestone. The building was erected by Hagerman and Harshman of Sullivan at a cost of $75,000 and the formal opening was held June 30, 1920. From time to time over the years, changes and improvements have been made to the building. In 1976 the building was extensively remodeled and expanded, and another smaller expansion project was completed in 1997. The building stands today as a monument to A.R. Scott and his vision for a bank that would continue to service the financial needs of the community for generations to come.

After A.R. Scott, the position of president passed on to family members throughout the years. Past presidents were: Troy Scott, Joe Scott, Rodney Scott, Mary Scott Woods and Sam Scott. Tod Jeffers, the younger son of Dale and Mary Jo Jeffers and grandson of Joe and Mary Scott, currently serves as president and has held this position since March 31, 2012.  Tod represents the fifth generation of the Scott family to be involved in the family banking business and continues the tradition of a “Scott with an iron safe.”


The Dalton City location of Scott State Bank was previously known as The Hight State Bank which was founded in 1892 as the Dalton City Bank. On October 3, 1917, an application for permission to organize the Hight State Bank was filed in the office of the Auditor of Public Accounts of the State of Illinois. The application was signed by G.E. Hight, P.J. Vollmer, J.H. Uppendahl, Clarence R. Hight and Guy P. Lewis. The original bank building was destroyed in the fire of September 1936 along with several other buildings located in the same block. The present brick building was erected after the fire and a complete remodeling of the interior was undertaken in 1962. The Hight State Bank was purchased by Scott Bancshares, Inc. on February 28, 1989, from Mt. Zion Bancorp, Inc. and was merged into Scott State Bank on October 1, 1998.


Scott State Bank’s Sullivan location opened in June 2000. This full service facility consists of approximately 2,800 square feet with three drive-up lanes, two private loan offices, safety deposit boxes and a conference room that is available to the public for evening and weekend meetings.


In early 1951 a group of local businessmen and interested citizens of Maroa met and discussed the possibility of forming a bank. The community had been without a bank since 1932.

On July 13, 1951, Maroa received a new banking charter as the Bank of Maroa. The organizers purchased the former bank building located at 101 E. Main Street that was built in 1916 by Crocker and Company. In 1972 the Board of Directors determined it was wise to purchase the two buildings adjacent to the bank building that had been on the market for some period of time. These two buildings were purchased and one of them was torn down and replaced with a new drive-up facility which was placed in service in July 1974.

George H. Waller served as the bank’s first chairman and president. Other past presidents were Robert Stoutenborough, Lawrence Thicksten (first president/CEO), Larry Otis and Gary Bohner.

Scott Bancshares, Inc. acquired the Bank of Maroa on June 30, 1995. Effective October 1, 2000, the name of the bank was changed to Maroa Forsyth Community Bank.

Effective July 1, 2011, Maroa Forsyth Community Bank merged with Scott State Bank, Bethany, IL.


The Mt. Zion location, a full-service facility was opened in the fall of 2013. The Scott family has a long history with Mt. Zion.  James Scott, grandfather of our founder A.R. Scott, settled in the Mt. Zion area in 1824.  James was a founding member of the Mt. Zion Presbyterian church and was a teacher in the first school in Mt. Zion Township. We are pleased to once again be a part of the Mt. Zion community and adding another convenient location for our customers.


The State Bank of Niantic was founded on September 11, 1890 by George Wree, Henning Jacobsen, and Herman Nottleman.  In 1893, Nottleman and Jacobsen sold their interest to Wree and Waller Pritchett and the firm name was changed to Wree, Pritchett and Company.  George Wree passed away in 1907 and his interest was purchased by Pritchett.  In 1910, a new bank building was constructed and the capital was increased to $25,000.  On July 1, 1915, the bank was incorporated as a State Bank.  Stockholders were Waller Pritchett, Derias Buckles, Carl W. Pritchett, Guy P. Lewis, and Effie Pritchett.

Waller Pritchett died in 1936 having served the bank for forty three years.  Succeeding her husband as president, Effie Pritchett served from 1936-1939.  Other presidents of the bank were Carl W. Pritchett from 1938-1958; Carl Pritchett, Jr. from 1958-1980; Hershel Pritchett from 1980-1993; Blain Cornwell from 1994-2008; and Brad Jackson 2009-2014.

The State Bank of Niantic was purchased by Scott Bancshares, Inc. in 1985.  Sam Scott, chairman of Scott Bancshares, Inc. has a strong personal connection to the bank.  His father, S. Joe Scott, began his commercial banking career in Niantic and served as a director from 1936-1939.

Effective September 30, 2014, State Bank of Niantic merged in with Scott State Bank, Bethany, IL.


In April 1999, State Bank of Niantic originally opened the Decatur location inside the Wyckles Convenience Center.  The location had one drive-up lane, three lobby tellers and a loan office.  This location also had an ATM accessible 24 hours per day.

In November 2009, State Bank of Niantic closed the Wyckles location and moved into a new facility at 3950 W. Fountain Lane, just a quarter mile from the old location.  The Decatur facility offers three drive-up lanes, a drive-up 24 hour ATM, four lobby tellers, safe deposit boxes, and loan offices.


Scott Bancshares, Inc. was formed in 1982 when shareholders of Scott State Bank exchanged their shares for holding company stock.