First Chicago Corporation
First Chicago Corporation
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First Chicago Corporation
August 17, 1978
American Bank Note Company
12" (w) by 8" (h)
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On July 1, 1863, banker Edmund Aiken and his partners invested $100,000 to found a new federally chartered bank that could take advantage of the National Banking Act of 1863, which allowed national banks to exist along with state-chartered institutions for the first time. First Chicago received National Bank charter No. 8. The new bank known as The First National Bank of Chicago, or The First, grew steadily in the 1860s, financing the American Civil War.
The First merged with Union National Bank in 1900 and with the Metropolitan National Bank in 1902. At the beginning of the twentieth century, noted investors in the bank include J. Pierpont Morgan, James Stillman, Jacob H. Schiff, E. H. Harriman, and Marshall Field. In 1913, The First became a charter member of the Federal Reserve system. The First survived the depression, even acquiring Foreman State Banks in 1931 and was able to open its doors without regulatory delays following the National Bank Holiday of 1933.
The First National clock is located at Exelon Plaza next to the Chase Tower in the Chicago Loop. The tower was called First National Plaza when it was built in 1969.
In 1903, the First opened the First Trust and Savings Bank which provided savings accounts to individual customers. First Trust and Savings Bank merged with Union Trust Company in 1928 to become the First Union Trust and Savings Bank. During the Great Depression, the First would absorb First Union Trust and Savings Bank's customers and operations. The bank was active in the sale of War Bonds during World War II. During the 1950s and 1960s the First expanded both in the Midwestern US as well as abroad, opening offices in London (1959), Tokyo (1962) and later Beijing (1980).
In 1969 the bank was reorganized as the primary subsidiary of the new First Chicago Corporation, a newly formed bank holding company. First Chicago was used as a brand name starting in 1969 and the bank moved into a new skyscraper in the Loop in Chicago (originally called First National Plaza, it is now known as Chase Tower). The bank grew consistently through the early 1970s, however, the bank's growth undermined its underwriting standards. By the end of 1975 and the beginning of 1976, non-performing loans at First Chicago had reached twice the national average for commercial banks at roughly 11% of all loans. Efforts to fix the bank failed and the bank struggled through the end of the 1970s, suffering from highly speculative bets on interest rates.
Expansion beyond a single retail banking location was hindered for years. Not only was Illinois one of the last states to allow branch banking, but for years it did not allow holding companies to own more than one bank. First Chicago was not able to open its first branch bank until 1977, when banks were allowed to open two limited banking facilities within 1,500 feet of the main office.
Unlike its rivals, First Chicago waited two years before making its first bank purchase after the Illinois legislature began to allow holding companies to own more than one bank in 1981. In 1984, First Chicago purchased American National Corporation, the holding company for American National Bank and Trust Company of Chicago, another bank located in the Loop, from Walter E. Heller International Corporation for $275 million.
During the 1980s, CEO Barry F. Sullivan, formerly with Chase Manhattan Bank, was able to turn around the bank in the early 1980s. Additionally First Chicago's private equity operations proved highly successful and served the incubator for a number of successful independent private equity groups. Stanley Golder, who built the group in the 1970s left the bank in 1980 to found GTCR. In the 1990s, the team, led by John Canning, Jr. would spin out of First Chicago to form private equity firm Madison Dearborn. Midwestern private equity firm, Primus Capital was also founded by First Chicago private equity alumni.
First Chicago began to expand for the first time into the northwest suburbs of Chicago with the acquisition of the Arlington Heights-based First United Financial Services, a bank holding company with five banks, in 1987. The following year, First Chicago entered DuPage County by acquiring Gary-Wheaton Corp., another bank holding company.
In 1989, First Chicago acquired the north Chicago-based Ravenswood Financial Corp. for $55.1 million. Ravenswood Financial's only bank was renamed First Chicago Bank of Ravenswood. First Chicago also acquired the Winnetka-based Winnetka Bank for $21.6 million in stock.
In 1993, First Chicago acquired Lake Shore Bancorp, another Chicago-based bank holding company, $323 million.
Most of the acquired banks were named First Chicago Bank of followed by the name of the geographical location. Illinois law did not permit the merger of most of the acquired banks into the First National Bank of Chicago until as late as 1993.
First Chicago once again began to suffer from the quality of its loan portfolio in the early 1990s and sought out a merger with the National Bank of Detroit, which at the time was the 18th largest bank in the US (First Chicago was the 10th largest bank). The $5 billion merger, completed in 1995, created First Chicago NBD Corporation, the 7th largest bank in the US with $72 billion of assets, and was also a leader in the issuance of credit cards. While NBD was the nominal survivor, the merged bank was headquartered in Chicago.
In April 1998 First Chicago NBD announced a $30 billion merger with Banc One Corporation of Columbus, Ohio. Bank One was also a leading issuer of credit cards through its First USA division. Following the merger the company was renamed Bank One Corporation, headquartered in Chicago. The First Chicago and NBD names were retired in 1999. In 2004, Bank One Corporation merged into JPMorgan Chase & Co. and its subsidiary bank, then named Bank One, National Association, merged into JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association.
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All of our pieces are original - we do not sell reproductions. If you ever find out that one of our pieces is not authentic, you may return it for a full refund of the purchase price and any associated shipping charges.
Are the certificates offered on your site genuine or reproductions?All of the certificates you see on our site are genuine pieces, we do not sell any reproductions.
Are the certificates you sell negotiable on any of today's stock markets or indexes?
No. All of the pieces we sell are either canceled or obsolete and have collectible value only.
Are the images presented in your product listings of the exact piece I will receive?
It depends. We try to present images of the exact piece you will receive whenever possible. However, when we are offering quantities of a piece, this is impossible. Within every product page we detail whether or not you will be receiving the exact certificate listed, or if the image is a representative example of the one you will receive.
How will you ship my order and how much do you charge?
We ship all orders via the United States Postal Service. Most domestic orders are shipped via Ground Advantage. USPS International, Priority and Express Mail, UPS and DHL services are also available, and costs are calculated during checkout. Current charges may be reviewed here.
Can I return my purchase?
Absolutely. You may return any merchandise, for any reason, within 30 days of the purchase date for a full refund of the purchase price.
We guarantee all of our pieces to be authentic. If you ever determine that a piece is not authentic, it may be returned for a full refund of the purchase price as well as any associated shipping charges.
If your order exceeds $35, and the shipping address is within the United States, shipping via USPS Ground Advantage is FREE!
We make every effort to ship out all orders within 24 hours of receipt.
We ship the majority of orders via the USPS, with domestic orders using the Ground Advantage service.
Shipping is calculated during checkout. Upgraded services such as Priority and Express Mail, as well as UPS and DHL options, are also available.
As soon as your order is shipped you will receive your tracking information via email.
OVERSEAS ORDERS PLEASE NOTE THAT WE DECLARE FULL ORDER VALUE ON ALL SHIPMENTS. CUSTOMER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL VAT/CUSTOMS CHARGES.
Our goal is to make sure every item you receive is exactly what you had in mind. If you not happy with your purchase, we’ll help you get it sorted in a timely and professional manner.
You can return anything we offer for an exchange, refund or store credit within 30 days of delivery. Return shipping costs may apply, and the item must be in its original condition and packaging.
Any shipping charges collected on the original order are not eligible for a refund.