On a cold winter night in January 1930, D.L. Watson and his brothers J/P. (John) Watson and C.L. Watson walked down unpaved Ripley Street and entered the Old Federal Land Bank Building located at the corner of Ripley and Main Street. The Watson brothers had leased the building despite not having yet received approval for a bank charter from the Alabama State Banking Department. The Watson brothers were not disappointed. They were notified shortly thereafter that the bank charter had been approved.
On January 27, 1930, Samson Banking Company opened for business in the Town of Samson. The banks initial capital was $35,000.00. D.L. Watson served as President of the new bank. As the owners would not sell the Old Federal Land Bank Building, the Watson’s decided to move their bank to a new location in 1934. The building which is now Samson City Hall was owned by brother C.A. Watson who operated a furnishing business. After the addition of a vault and other modifications, this building became the new home for the Samson Banking Company.
In April 1944, all of the stock of Samson Banking Company was purchased by H.C. Walters, James J. Owens, the grandfather of current President and chairman David J. King, B. B Howell and W. C. Crews. On that date H. C. Watson was elected President and James J. Owens served as Vice President.
On January 1, 1949, James J. Owens purchased the stock of Mr. Walters giving him controlling interest of the bank. The remainder of the shares was purchased by Mr. Owens and his family over time. Mr. Owens was elected President in January 1949 and guided the bank through many years of prosperity until his death in 1971, at which time the bank had grown to assets of $ 7,000,000.00 and capital of $ 600,000.00.
At the time of his death, Mr. Owens was making plans to build a new bank building. Upon the death of Mr. Owens his son-in-law, Francis L. (Frank) King came into the bank as President. Mr. King and the board finalized plans for the new building. The new bank building was constructed at its current Samson location, at 2 West Main Street, and opened for business on July 29, 1972.
Mr. Frank King stepped down as President in 1996. Upon his retirement his son, David J. King became President of the Samson Banking and holds that position at this time.
In February 2014, the Board of Directors made a decision to build a bank in Geneva, Alabama to provide local banking to the citizens of Geneva and the surrounding communities. A lot located at 105 N. Commerce Street in Geneva was purchased and construction on a new bank building begin in September 2014. The new bank opened on March 23, 2015.[/mp_span] [/mp_row]