Banking in the area started in New Paltz around the 1870’s by Peter LeFevre & William DeGarmo of Ulster County. There were also banks in Newburgh.
LeFevre & DeGarmo were also among the organizers of Walden Savings Bank in 1872 as their banking venture in New Paltz was short lived.
Walden Savings Bank was officially established on April 25, 1872 and opened the first location on June 1, 1872 at the Joseph G. Millspaugh “Brick Store” on Oak Street, just five weeks after incorporation.
Our founders were drawn to Walden due to the cutlery industry (NY Knife Works at the time; then Schrade) where there were more growth and employment opportunities. Residents were thrilled with a local banking option and no longer had to travel to Newburgh or New Paltz.
Early on there were as many as 25 Bank Trustees made up of Merchants, Farmers, Business People and Attorneys including Seth M. Capron who would go on to serve as Walden Savings Bank's first president.
In 1878, space was rented on Main Street owned by the National Bank of Walden. Walden Savings Bank subsequently moved to its current location at 2 Bank Street in 1912.
Seth Capron, President 1872-1878
George W. Weller, President 1878-1893
Nicholas J. Fowler, President 1893-1894
George W. Stoddard, President 1894-1909
Hiriam B. Wooster, President 1909-1925
Theron L. Millspaugh, President 1925-1929
Albert S. Embler, President 1929-1941
Floyd Wooster, President 1941-1954
Clarence J. Deyo, President 1954-1963
Frederick G. White, President 1963-1967
Raymond E. Powers, President 1968-1981
John D. Garrison, President and C.E.O. 1981-2000
David T. Cocks, President and C.E.O. 2000-2011
Derrik R. Wynkoop, President and C.E.O. 2011-Present
Founding Board of Directors, October 1873
Board of Directors, January 1876 to September 1909
Board of Directors, September 1909 to June 1949
Board of Directors, September 1953 to June 2011
Current Walden Savings Bank Board of Directors
Pictured Left to Right
Dr. Peter V. Masci, Jeffrey D. Crist - Immediate Past Chair & Vice Chairman, Stephen E. Burger, Michelle A. Koury M.D., Derrik R. Wynkoop, Ira D. Conklin III, Edward F.X. Gallagher, Jr., Norman M. Sassi, CPA- Chairman of the Board
The Bank's very first depositor was John R. Hays with a deposit of $700. Quite a hefty sum for the time!
In the 1930's, Walden Public Schools included a "Bank Day" in their curriculum hosted by Walden Savings Bank. This later transformed into the bank's School Savings Program.
With remodeling of the Village of Walden branch in 1962, Walden Savings Bank's first Drive Up Window was opened. This continues to be a popular option for customers, especially during the recent pandemic when customers found this to be a more safe and convenient way to bank.
In the 1960's Safe Deposit Boxes were considered an "innovation" and are still offered at each of our 11 branch locations.
The concept of using an ATM and not interacting with a teller was initially a radical departure from traditional banking. By the 1980's, ATMs became common place and are being used throughout our branch network.
In the 1990's, Walden Savings Bank began offering "home banking" as its very first online banking platform. Walden Savings Bank employees actually made housecalls and helped customers with their set up with a floppy disk! Oh how times have changed!
By the late 1990's, the first Walden Savings Bank website was up and running. This first version was built internally by Walden Savings Bank's Information Technology Department.
In 2011, Jeffrey D. Crist, President of Crist Brothers Orchards, was appointed as the first ever Chairman of the Walden Savings Bank Board of Directors.
In 2012, Walden Savings Bank created a Wealth Management Division for bank customers called Walden Investment Services. Today, Walden Investment Services has over $110M is assets under management and over 800 clients.
Our consumer and business customers continue to enjoy "All Access" to any of Walden Savings Bank's employees, including Senior Management, for assistance with their financial needs and goals.
It was truly a milestone when Walden Savings Bank reached over $1.7 million in assets in 1923. Even back then we highlighted our ongoing commitment to the community.
Of course Walden Savings Bank does much more than just "savings" today but the importance of savings was always emphasized especially during The Great Depression.
Overnight bags and grooming kits were a sought after giveaway for "the bank with the chime clock."
Celebrating Walden Savings Bank's 100th anniversary in 1972, the flagship branch in Walden had been remodeled and was truly state of the art for the time.
Wow, some pretty impressive savings interest rates in 1974 and a new marketing slogan "the human side of banking."
"Local People Helping Local People" became yet another one of the Bank's taglines that were used over the years but still rings true today!
Vintage 1970's ad shows the winning design of a local contest at Valley Central High School.
The WSB "pentagon" logo was just one of many versions used over our history and was designed by the 12th President of Walden Savings Bank, John D. Garrison.
Celebrating Walden Savings Bank's 125th anniversary in 1997 by highlighting our five branch locations. Walden Savings Bank has since expanded to 11 full service branches in addition to the Dutchess County lending office in Beacon, NY.
Promoting the initial grand opening of Walden Savings Bank's Headquarters at 15 Scott's Corners Drive in Montgomery in 2002 with the tagline "Where Everything Centers On You."
The list of charitable organizations Walden Savings Bank has had the privilege to support is long indeed. Giving back to the community is a core value of the bank.
Walden Savings Bank was happy to welcome new neighbors in the Village of Walden and even provided them with one of Walden Savings Bank's former buildings to call home.
Walden Savings Bank has the most generous customers and we love when they choose to join us in supporting the community.
Walden Savings Bank has fostered relationships with the schools throughout the community. Whether teaching students about finances or simply volunteering, Walden Savings Bank loves working with the next generation of customers.
Walden Savings Bank and its employees donate their time to countless not for profit boards and committees throughout the Hudson Valley including Hudson Valley Honor Flight.
There isn't much that the Walden Savings Bank team wouldn't do to support a worthwhile cause like supporting the Special Olympics in the Fishkill Polar Plunge!
Entering our sixth year of participation, we are proud to have raised over $100,000 for the American Cancer Society's Real Men Wear Pink campaign for Breast Cancer Awareness.
The Community Champion program recognizes the efforts of local volunteers with a donation made to the organization they work so hard for.
While other companies have "casual days", our "22 Days of Giving" Friday and Saturday Dress Down Program allows Walden Savings Bank employees to choose causes that are meaningful to them and make a donation with funds collected throughout the year.
The Fireman’s Monument dedicated in 1909 (currently outside the Josephine-Louise Public Library) was outside of the Walden Branch until 1925.
The chime clock was considered a crossroads for countless travellers. A replica of the "old" chime clock was reinstalled in the early 1900's and on the Bank's 150th Anniversary the clock chimed once again!
During the Great Depression the bank closed for two weeks. While these were difficult times, Walden Savings Bank persevered when so many other banks failed.
In the 1800's, each transaction was recorded by hand into large ledger books. We have safely stored this original ledger since we were established in 1872.
Our first Village of Montgomery Branch on Clinton Street was once home to the First National Bank of Montgomery.
Our Florida Branch lobby was featured in the 2016 movie "Love On The Run" directed by Ash Christianson.
Walden Savings Bank's mascot "Wally St. Banks" was inspired by the BankWise Financial Management Platform that uses an owl as its icon.
A highlight of Montgomery Day has been the annual Soap Box Derby.
This vintage postcard featuring Walden Savings Bank's first branch location can now been seen as a wall mural in the Walden Branch. This was installed in honor of the Bank’s 145th anniversary in 2017.
Where it all began…Walden Savings Bank first opened its doors in April of 1872 in the Village of Walden.
101 years after Walden Savings Bank opened its doors, the Bank opened its second location and office in Washingtonville in 1973.
Walden Savings Bank's first location in Montgomery was located on Clinton Street in the Village of Montgomery. Today our Village of Montgomery location is right across the street on Union Street that allows the Bank to offer Drive-Up service.
The 1970's were a busy time of expansion for Walden Savings Bank. The Cornwall Office opened in June of 1976 as the Country celebrated its Bi-Centennial.
In 1990, the original Pine Bush location was opened right on Main Street and quickly became Walden Savings Bank's busiest location. We quickly outgrew this space and relocated to Boniface Drive in 2004 where we still reside.
"Gardiner has been an unusual town. It's gone from nothing changing to a sound aggressive growth pattern. We hope to be a part of the town's progress and development." said Walden Savings Bank President John Garrison about Walden Savings Bank's fifth location being housed in the town of Gardiner in 1997. This is the Bank's only location in Ulster County.
The doors to Walden Savings Bank's seventh location in New Windsor were opened in April of 1999. During much of the Revolutionary War, the New Windsor area served as the major depot for the Continental Army and Army Medical Department.
2002 was a monumental year for Walden Savings Bank. As we continued to grow, we relocated our Corporate Headquarters from Walden to Montgomery. This included opening the Scott's Corners branch which underwent a full transformation in 2021.
In 2007, Walden Savings Bank expanded into the Newburgh market with the opening of the Middlehope Branch. The branch is just down the road from the famous "Balmville Tree" that goes back to 1699.
Walden Savings Bank's ninth location in Circleville was opened in 2006 on the site of the original Circleville Inn. If you ever visited the Circleville Inn you may recall it was famous for their twice-baked potatoes, first baked, then scooped out, seasoned, baked again and garnished with paprika.
The Florida branch was built in 2010, the perfect compliment to round out Walden Savings Bank's extensive branch network in Orange County.
In 2016, Walden Savings Bank was happy to expand its footprint and open its first Lending Office in Dutchess County. Located at the end of Main Street in Beacon, Walden Savings Bank is here to assist with all of your Residential and Commercial Lending needs!
One thing Walden Savings Bank customers have loved over the years are the giveaways. It wasn't unusual for a "bank" to give away a "bank" and here are some very early examples.
Years ago cell phones were not even a concept. Calendars were always a popular giveaway and customers still ask for them today!
The Clean Indoor Air Act was not enacted in the United States until 2003, and prior to that smoking indoors was quite popular. To celebrate Walden Savings Bank's 100th anniversary, Walden Savings Bank ash trays were given to customers in 1972.
To celebrate Walden Savings Bank's 125th anniversary, and honor the Bank's early association with the cutlery industry, President and CEO John Garrison created a special commemorative pocket knife as a giveaway in 1997.
No one likes a paper cut…letter openers were quite a popular giveaway at one time. Today, we would suggest e-statements of course.
Walden Savings Bank always likes to provide its customers with information on how to save money. Check out this booklet of household facts and tips that was designed to help customers save time and money when it came to grocery shopping and cooking dinner.
Remember Tupperware parties? Walden Savings Bank loves to give away items its customers will put to use. These could be found in kitchens throughout Orange County during the 1970's.
A giveaway filled with other giveaways, maybe some cookies or candy? Yes, please!
Another milestone as Walden Investment Services celebrates it's own anniversary of 10 years in 2022. This team of professionals is ready to assist with all of your financial planning needs.
Back in 1872 could you imagine explaining how a selfie stick worked?
Some giveaways are designed to help great causes and support the community. These custom Halloween bags were issued to help raise awareness around Autism with our community friends at Abilities First.
While it has remained quiet for years, the Walden Savings Bank Chime clock has been restored and once again serenaded Walden residents on April 25, 2022, the actual date of our 150th anniversary!
The newly transformed Scott's Corners Branch utilizes "teller pods" for a more interactive banking experience for customers and employees alike.
The WSB Café located at Walden Savings Bank's Headquarters offers free beverages for all guests.
Walden Savings Bank has a new Augmented Reality experience which allows users to explore a virtual branch, learn about product and services and even earn real rewards!
Interactive tablets at the Scott's Corners Branch Digital Discovery Center allows customers to learn more about Walden Savings Bank's Digital Banking Solutions.
While Walden Savings Bank offers a robust suite of Digital Banking services, you can now schedule your next branch visit online!
In February 2023, Walden Savings Bank will be upgrading its entire core banking system to provide customers with a more convenient, faster and user friendly experience.