Byron W. Clarke of Milwaukee and J. J. McCullough of Saint Paul filed for the organization of the State Bank of Minnesota in Austin on August 16, 1858, the first day for which the auditor accepted applications for the free banks. The bank was capitalized at $25,000, all but one of its 250 shares belonging to Mr. Clarke. Albert L. Pritchard of Watertown, Wisconsin, who would later become the sole shareholder, was named president. Mr. A. M. Pett was cashier.
On August 16, 1858 the auditor authorized American Bank Note Company to engrave and print notes for this bank. The bank chose a sheet configuration of 1-2-5-5 for its currency. It printed a total of 8,000 sheets amounting to $104,000 of which $25,000 was issued. A notice of closing for this bank was filed with the auditor on December 10, 1859.
A special Act of the Legislature in 1862 authorized what remained of the bank to move to Minneapolis, about 100 miles to the north. The move was consummated on August 20, 1862. At that time, $600 of the Austin bank’s notes was unredeemed. On January 6, 1863 the auditor destroyed $78,961 of remainder notes. The state auditor included the outstanding circulation of the first State Bank with that of the second in his books, and thereafter no differentiation was made between the notes of either bank upon redemption.
Read more about the Recycling of Bank Plates for Minnesota’s Free Banks in Paper Money, journal of the Society of Paper Money Collectors.