Hometown Pride Tour: Bowie Legend Bank
Published: Jun. 21, 2016 at 1:22 AM CDT|Updated: Dec. 6, 2016 at 5:41 PM CST
In business for one hundred and twenty-six years, Legend bank has served the community of Bowie, Texas. In its early days, Bowie had around eight banks. While others eventually closed, Legend remained a vital part of the town’s economy even surviving the great depression. Today legend bank has branches in eight other Texas cities but its headquarters remain in Bowie. After deciding to build a new building, Legend Bank decided to stay in Bowie. “We have been in business for so long and have been a part of the downtown area, we were going to stay in the downtown area”, Executive Vice President Bret Meekins said.
And that’s exactly what they did. The new Legend Bank was built right beside the old bank. While still keeping up with banking in the 21st Century, Legend Bank also gives its customers and visitors to Bowie a look at banking in the 1800s.
Legend Bank has all the modern characteristics of most banks including computers and drive-thru services. But legend bank also has a few items on display that are not’t from this time period. On both sides of the modern day vault, there are two vault doors that were used in the older banks. Each one has been repainted to represent their original design from the early 1900s. In the main entrance, there’s an old, three-thousand seven hundred pound cannonball safe that was used in the former bank building during the 1890s. Surrounding the safe are photos showcasing life in Bowie during the late 1800s and early 1900s. Vice President of the bank Linda Wells likes the blend of cultures and sees it serve different types of people saying, “We’re fast pace and no one has time to come into the bank. So while still having the convenience of a drive-thru we also accommodate those who like to come in for a more personal touch.”
Linda Wells has also seen out of state visitors come take a look at the bank. “A person from California came in 2-3 weeks ago looking around and could not believe what he was seeing here. He said this looks like The Old West. That’s really what we want. That’s what we were, that’s what we are,” Wells says.
While the new building is complete, there are still more plans ahead for the bank grounds. Around half of the old building and neighboring parking facility will be demolished starting July 1. These changes will make way for a new downtown project. “We’re going to build a downtown park area for the citizens to be able to use when we have parades or other events downtown. I think it’ll be a real good addition to the town,” Meekins says.
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