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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Columbia in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

First National Bank

 
 
First National Bank Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 27, 2018
1. First National Bank Marker
Inscription. The Columbia Bridge Company was formed in 1811 and began to raise money for a bridge between Columbia and Wrightsville. This business served as the first bank in the community, and by 1814 had used its profits to build the first Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge. By the time a flood destroyed it in 1832, the bridge had grown all but indispensable and was quickly replaced by the longest wooden covered bridge in the world, financed by the Columbia National Bank.

As the only bridge crossing the Susquehanna between Harrisburg and the Mason-Dixon Line, it attracted canals and railroad lines to Columbia. It also drew the attention of the Confederate Army, which invaded Pennsylvania in June 1863. As the Rebels approached the bridge on June 28, Union troops torched it.

A newspaper published the following statement: “The burning of the bridge… has given rise to a rumor that its loss would have the effect of impairing the credit of the Columbia Bank. This now seems will not be the case, as the structure was destroyed by order of the military authorities, thus making the Government responsible for all loss.” The bank was never reimbursed for its claim of $100,000.
 
Erected by Pennsylvania Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series. This
Marker detail: Columbia Bank and Bridge Company Stock Certificate image. Click for full size.
Courtesy of the First National Bank Museum
2. Marker detail: Columbia Bank and Bridge Company Stock Certificate
Columbia Bank and Bridge Company Stock Certificate which helped finance the construction of the Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge.
marker is included in the Pennsylvania Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. 40° 1.846′ N, 76° 30.243′ W. Marker is in Columbia, Pennsylvania, in Lancaster County. Marker is at the intersection of South 2nd Street and Locust Street, on the left when traveling north on South 2nd Street. Touch for map. Marker is located outside the First National Bank Museum. Marker is at or near this postal address: 170 Locust Street, Columbia PA 17512, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Columbia (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Columbia (approx. 0.2 miles away); Lincoln Highway (approx. 0.2 miles away); Samuel Wright (approx. 0.4 miles away); Prelude to Gettysburg / A Desperate Plan (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Susquehanna and Tidewater Canal (approx. 1.2 miles away); Susquehanna River Water Trail (approx. 1.2 miles away); a different marker also named Susquehanna and Tidewater Canal (approx. 1.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Columbia.
 
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. Civil War: Burning of the Wrightsville Bridge
 
Also see . . .  First National Bank Museum. (This link presents photos of the bank interior and artifacts.)
Marker detail: Historic photo of the First National Bank Building image. Click for full size.
Courtesy of the First National Bank Museum
3. Marker detail: Historic photo of the First National Bank Building
The First National Bank Museum is the only known bank preserved in its original setting in the United States. The bank occupies the two front corner rooms of the 1814 Federal-style townhouse built as an elegant home for wealthy merchant, James Wright, Jr., grandson of Columbia’s founding father, John Wright, Sr. During its colorful and interesting past, the building served as private residences, hotels, a tavern, and one of the town’s first public libraries. The bank, and its owners, the Detwiler family, occupied the property for over 100 years from 1852 until 1954. Marvelous details from the bank's working years survive, such as the walnut paying and receiving teller cages, the furnishings of the President's office, the massive walk-in vault, and the original check canceller consisting of a tree stump and a specially designed hammer. View the bullet hole where the only known attempted robbery was foiled. (Submitted on August 29, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Bridges & ViaductsIndustry & CommerceWar, US Civil
 
Marker detail: Daniel H. Detwiler image. Click for full size.
Courtesy of the First National Bank Museum
4. Marker detail: Daniel H. Detwiler
Daniel H. Detwiler, brother of Solomon S. Detwiler and co-founder of Detwiler and Brother Bank and the First National Bank of Columbia.
First National Bank Marker (<i>tall view from 2nd Street; bank corner entrance in background</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 27, 2018
5. First National Bank Marker (tall view from 2nd Street; bank corner entrance in background)
First National Bank (<i>northeast corner view; marker visible left of center</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 27, 2018
6. First National Bank (northeast corner view; marker visible left of center)
First National Bank (<i>window detail</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 27, 2018
7. First National Bank (window detail)
First National Bank (<i>door detail</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 27, 2018
8. First National Bank (door detail)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 6, 2018. This page originally submitted on August 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 46 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on August 29, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.   7, 8. submitted on September 5, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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