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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
Marshall Cohen—researcher and producer, CNN

Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


From Encyclopedia Dubuque
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1926 calendar
Photo courtesy: Jim Massey
Letterhead. Photo courtesy: Cathy's Treasures, 156 Main, Dubuque

FEDERAL BANK AND TRUST COMPANY. The Federal Bank and Trust opened in Dubuque on May 2, 1914 and $30,000 was deposited the first day. In August 1930 the total deposits of the bank totaled $2.2 million. Affiliated with it was the Federal Corporation doing business in general securities, investment and finance with capital of $150,000 and the Federal Building Company with a capital of $300,000. The bank moved to a new thirteen-story building in 1923. (1)

The main room of the bank featured three murals by James E. McBurney, an artist who received medals for two murals at the Panama-California Exposition. The largest of the murals depicted Julien DUBUQUE being shown the LEAD mines by Native Americans. A second mural entitled "The Ferry" pictures pioneers waiting to cross the MISSISSIPPI RIVER on a ferry. The third mural illustrated three Native Americans on a high point watching the first steamboat on the river. (2)

On Armistice Day in 1929, the American Legion Band drum and bugle corps, members of the Dubuque Legion post and the public faced east while a firing squad fired three volleys in tribute to the soldiers and sailors who died in World War I. Following the salute, a bugler sounded taps and the echo was sounded by a second bugler stationed on the roof of the twelve-story Federal Bank and Trust Trust Company building a block away. (3)

Citing the need to protect depositors against heavy withdrawals, the Federal Bank and Trust Company and the UNION TRUST AND SAVINGS BANK closed their doors on January 27, 1932. (4) The payment of a seventh and final dividend to depositors and creditors of the bank was announced in May, 1938. Prior to this, an order was issued in District Court in March authorizing the sale of all remaining bank assets. (5)

On February 19, 1945 AMERICAN TRUST AND SAVINGS BANK opened for business in the same building.



1. "Corn is Symbol of Federal Bank," Telegraph Herald, August 24, 1930, p. 55

2. Ibid.

3. "Impressive Armistice Day Ceremony, Telegraph-Herald and Times-Journal, November 12, 1929, p. 25

4. "News Items from the Files of the Telegraph Herald," Telegraph Herald, January 27, 1952, p. 8

5. "Federal Ban & Trust Co. To Pay Final 3% Dividend," Telegraph Herald, May 4, 1938, p. 1