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Walking Tour of Ironton Ohio Local History
Item 3 of 9

The Iron Bank, co-founded by residents and the founder of Ironton, opened for business on July 11, 1851. After some changes in location and a merger, the bank operating as the First National Bank of Ironton constructed this building on Third Street. In the 1970s, the bank was purchased by the First National Bank of Cincinnati, which subsequently became the Star Banc Corporation and finally the U. S. Bank National Association.


  • Star Bank, N.A., Tristate
  • Illustration of the First National Bank Building in Ironton

After the town of Ironton constructed a railroad and began selling lots, many believed the next major step was to build a bank. Residents James Willard, James Rodgers, D. T. Woodrow, and Hiram Campbell, along with the town’s founder John Campbell, put in an initial investment of $40,300 for the bank. The charter for the Iron Bank was received in May 1851, but it did not open until July of that same year. Rodgers served as the bank’s first president while Willard worked as cashier. Rodgers resigned from his position in 1860 to protest what he felt was excessive spending, leading James Peebles to take over. A year later, the bank moved from its original location between Lawrence and Buckhorn Streets to Second and Railroad Street.

On October 5th, 1863 the Office of Comptroller of the Currency granted the Charter number 98 to the Iron Bank of Ironton. Under this charter, the bank became known as the First National Bank of Ironton.  After Charles Horn became president of the bank in 1915, the First and Second National Banks of Ironton merged and relocated to the bank’s current site on Third Street. Under the presidency of Bernard Edwards, the First National Bank of Cincinnati bought the First National Bank of Ironton for $7.05 million in September 1976. In 1988, the First National Bank of Cincinnati became Star Banc Corporation, making the bank in Ironton Star Bank, N.A., Tri-State. Over the next decade, the bank merged with several others, ultimately becoming the largest banking establishment in Southeastern Ohio. In 2001, the bank became a part of the U.S. Bank National Association.

Lucas, David. A Walking Tour of Downtown Ironton. Herald-Dispatch. http://media.herald-dispatch.com/walkingtour/walkingtour_ironton.pdf. 

A Pictorial of Lawrence County. Edition 1st. Ironton, Ohio. Ironton Tribune, 1998.

Iron Bank of Ironton. The Lawrence Register. Accessed May 18, 2018. https://lawrencecountyohio.wordpress.com/history/businesses/iron-bank/.

The First National Bank of Ironton. US Bank Locations. Accessed May 18, 2018. https://www.usbanklocations.com/the-first-national-bank-of-ironton-6608.shtml.

Willard, Eugene B. Williams, Daniel W., et al. A Standard History of the Hanging Rock Region of Ohio. Vol. 1. Chicago, Illinois. The Lewis Publishing Company, 1916. Via Google Books.

1st National Bank. The Lawrence Register. Accessed May 18, 2018. https://lawrencecountyohio.wordpress.com/history/businesses/1st-national-bank/. Photo source.