Here is some local information on the history of Banks, Oregon.
Contents

1 Books & Articles
2 Essay
3 Links
4 Timeline

Books & Articles


  • "Editorial News." Oregon Historical Quarterly, Vol 60, No 2 (June 1959): 285-286.
    • "Our great centenary celebration is now in full swing...watch the Newsletter for more announcements concerning summertime programs, including the International Muzzle-loading Shoot, Black Powder Days. The shoot will be held at Banks this year."
  • Fulton, Ann. Banks: A Darn Good Little Town. Self-Published Dissertation, 1995.
  • MacArthur, Lewis A. Quarterly of the Oregon Historical Society, Vol 26, No 4 (Dec 1925): 330.
    • "A.C. Wahl, postmaster at Banks, reported in September, 1925, that the name of Banks was submitted to the post office authorities about 1890 by Joe Schulmerich and Joed Hartley, but it is not known what suggested the name. At one time the offices of Bakersfield and Banks were consolidated with Greenville, with Greenville as the name, but in 1907 the office was moved to the former site of Banks, and as a result of a petition to the authorities, the old name of Banks was readopted."

  • Mills, Randall V. "Early Electric Interurbans in Oregon." Oregon Historical Quarterly, Vol 44, No 4 (Dec 1943): 399.
    • In March 1909, "United (Railways, and interurban,) was running cars into Banks, which remained the final electric terminal, well located in an area devoid of potential business."
  • Wyatt, Harold A. Experiences of a Frozen Food Processor in Washington County, OR: Some Agricultural Issues in Washington County. Self-Published, 2003.


Essay


"The History of Banks revives 'Good' Old Days'"
by Mrs. Vernon Bateman, Hillsboro Argus, February 13, 1961

The beginning of Banks was Greenville (founded in the 1870s), a small town two miles south of the present day Banks. Greenville was the meeting place for trappers and settlers in the nearby area. Here they came to collect their mail, food supplies, and the latest news - local, national and political. Greenville had a post office and two merchandise stores. Franklin Pierce had the first store and was the first postmaster. Upon his retirement Jessie Moore and Willis Ireland became partners and William Moore became postmaster. Ireland later sold out to Moore.

In 1890 a pair of shoes could be bought for $1.75. In 1891 the store purchased two hogs weighing 180 pounds at 6 cents a pound and two veal weighing 175 pounds at 7 cents a pound. In January eggs were 15 cents a dozen; in March they were 25 cents. A pair of hose could be purchased for 25 cents, a corset stay for 15 cents and two pounds of coffee could be bought for 50 cents. These prices were taken from an old ledger owned by Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Ireland of Rt. 2, Forest Grove.

Dr. Parker also had a store with a saloon in the back, a dance hall above and a small room to one side where he extracted teeth.Parker advertised in the (Washington County) Hatchet that he would sell you more for $1 than any other store in Oregon.

Al Young had a blacksmith shop. In 1896 John Beker and son built a basket factory.

Greenville school was built of logs in the early 1860s. In the early 1860s the present school building was built. It was used until the district consolidated recently with Banks. This was Greenville at the turn of the century. There were survey crews going through this part of the valley. Rumors of a railroad going through Greenville were becoming stronger. Greenville's dreams were shattered when the survey was made; Greenville was two miles south of the railway. A new town was on the horizon and Greenville's star was fading to never shine again.

About 1903 the rails for the Pacific Railway and Navigation Company were being laid, connecting Hillsboro with Tillamook. Montgomery Turner had the foresight to see a new town coming, and in 1901 he started a store with the help of his brother, Ewell. The store flourished as construction crews required a great deal of supplies. The post office also was located in the store. Twice a week Turner sent a wagon to Portland for supplies. The store was located at the site of the present Perkins station. In a few years the town was growing by leaps and bounds along the railway. There were main roads running east and west, north and south, bringing settlers in from the nearby farms.

In 1906 Moore moved the post office and his home to Banks from Greenville. A name had to be chosen; Turner was suggested but was turned down because there was another Turner in Marion County. Names of prominent citizens were sent in and the name of Banks was selected by the postal department. John Banks owned a considerable amount of land in and near Banks. Three mail routes were established, one running north to Bald Mountain, one east through Mountaindale and another west through Hayward. Moore was postmaster and Mrs. Moore was his assistant. Those who first carried mail from Banks were Frank VanDomelen, Fred Mills, John Hutchens, John Kessler, Charles Kessler and John Luther. The present post office was built about 1922. William Crowthers is postmaster and Ralph Wilcox mail carrier. He has carried the mail since 1923. Postmaster with the longest service was Henry Atlee, serving two separate terms, one of six years and the other of 13. Arthur Wahl was also postmaster for a number of years.

About 1904 Fred Watrous of Forest Grove established a general merchandise store. He later sold out to Otto Galaway and Ralph Kinton. Galaway later sold out to Harold Jensen, who later sold out to Schumerich. The firm remained Kinton & Schumerich until Schulmerich died and Kinton moved to Indiana. The store was located where the pool hall is today. Another mercantile business was established by W.S. Atlee, who with his family came here from Michigan. Atlee conducted his business until his death. Mrs. Atlee had a millinery shop upstairs over the store. Mrs. Atlee also did sewing in this shop. The store was located where Tom Engen lives today. (Mr. & Mrs. Atlee were the grandparents of famous children's author Beverly Cleary)

Powne and Jensen also had a store in Banks, located in Parmley Hall, where United Growers have their receiving station today. They later moved their store into the building last known as Smitty's Market. Mr. Banks had the first meat market in town. Stafford later bought Banks out. Charles Kessler and Roy Stafford then ran the Banks Market. Kessler bought Stafford out and ran the market for a number of years. He later sold to Leonard Shaw, who ran the store for several years. Banks had a theatre in the Legion Hall. J.E. Parmley owned it in 1914. Ray Parmley ran the projector. Tom Engen also had the theatre. In 1909 Cass Wilson had a saloon and hotel near where the city hall is today. Banks also had a bakery down near Parmley Hall.

First blacksmith shop was owned by Ben Dooley in 1890. He later moved his residence and shop to Banks. His family lived near the shop, which was located where the Mobil station is today. Other shop was operated by Al Young, who moved his blacksmith shop from Greenville to Banks when the town began to develop. This was located where Crop has his garage today. This was run by first one owner then another until 1936 or 1937, when Mr. Kerr, who owned it at that time, became ill and had to quit the business. J.J. Smith had a shop near the city park.

The first hardware store was run by W.E. Willis. After his death A.H. Wolford bought the business. He later sold to O'Neil and Pettinger, who later dissolved partnership and let the business go. There was a furniture store owned by Mr. Cooper, then later by John Wunderlich. It burned to the ground and was never rebuilt. Wunderlich also had the undertaking parlor, which was located in R.N.A. Hall. Charles Prickett had the undertaking parlor after Wunderlich. McFarlan brothers ran a lumber yard which later developed into a furniture store. Mrs. McFarlan continued to run the business after her husband's death. She sold out to Cecil Lodge, who later sold to Ernie Vandehey, who runs the Banks hardware in the same location today.

In 1909 a group of enterprising citizens organized the Washington County Bank. Nathaniel Burnett was first president, Lewis Carstens, vice-president, and W.O. Galaway, cashier. When Burnett died Williams Moore became president. In 1944 the bank became affiliated with the Commercial Bank of Hillsboro.

In 1908 George McGraw built what was known as the Parmley Hall. He established a chopper and feed business in the lower part and the upper part was used for recreational purposes, such as roller skating.

Charles Shipley established a livery stable behind where Mr. Kane had his honey business today. Shipley also ran the Star Mail Route from Forest Grove to Banks. When train service became regular, the mail was brought by train. When train service was discontinued in 1933 the mail was brought in by bus, and today it is brought in by truck.

Dr. Burger was the first doctor in Banks and also built and operated the first drugstore in town, which was located near the hardware store. He was followed by a Dr. Killingsworth, who was here for a few months. In the spring of 1908 Dr. and Mrs. W.B. Munford came to Banks from Kansas. He soon built up an extensive practice, his territory covering many miles. Most of the trips were made on horseback. Later when autos became practical, he purchased one. He also owned and operated the drugstore. Munford's health failed and he returned to Kansas, where he died. Mrs. Munford and her two sons returned to Banks and made their home there.

Claude Hutchens purchased the drugstore and later moved it into the brick building beside the bank. In 1927 Hutchens sold his business to Byron B. Tresham, who ran it for a number of years. During the war Tresham sold his store to Wayne Shipley, who ran it until his death in 1945. Harold Sherwood later ran the drugstore. Dr. Zeigler took Munford's place as doctor but stayed only a few months. Dr. Guy Via, who was practicing in Buxton, moved to Banks in 1918, and soon had an extensive practice. He later moved to Forest Grove. Dr. R. M. Kines moved to Banks and soon became popular doctor. He stayed for about eight years and also moved to Forest Grove. Banks was without a doctor for a number of years until Dr. A.V. Jackson came after the war. He practiced here for a short time and moved to Forest Grove. Dr. Brooks came to Banks and practiced for a short time and moved to Portland. Banks has been without a doctor for several years.

In 1888 a cooperative creamery was established near the Gorge Schneider place. It was run successfully for a few years but later fizzled out. J.J. Hartley and Mr. Turner ran the creamery.

Shortly after World War I a group of Banks citizens and farmers organized the Banks Dairy Association. They erected the cheese factory building and an expert cheese maker was hired. Cheese was made for a number of years but the business did not pay and was discontinued. It later was rented to one or two independent concerns, but they, too, failed to make it pay and quit the business. The building stood empty for a number of years but now is used for processing berries. Banks Frozen Foods now owns the plant.

A town does not exist long without a church, and Banks was no exception. A groups of church-minded people got together and started the church. It was dedicated in 1909, and still remains the only church in town. Rev. Creasy was first pastor and Clyde Stewart was pastor when the church was dedicated. Charles Shipley was first superintendent. Mrs. Mike Schramel, Mrs. Charles Shipley and Mrs. Friday were organizers of the Ladies Aid, which grew and flourished. It met on Wednesday afternoons an did needlework, especially quilting thus earned many dollars for the support of the church and the pastor.

Another organization which held a unique place in the church and town was Mothers' Club. It was organized in 1912. Mrs. Flora Munford was first president. Charter members were Mrs. Nettie Carstens, Mrs. Nora Dooley, Mrs. Florence Davies, Mrs. Munford, Mrs. Minnie Schulmerich, Mrs. George McGraw, Mrs. Charles Mawhiney, Mrs. Hattie Eberly, Mrs. Della Hall, Mrs. Edna Kinton, Mrs. Kate McConnahay, Mrs. Hattie Prickett, Mrs. Viola Parmley, Mrs. Elsie Pryor, Mrs. Winnie Selfridge, Mrs. Henderson Smith, Mrs. Charles Shipley and Mrs. Montgomery Turner.

First choir in the church was composed of Molly Willis, Mrs. William H. Moore, Charles Shipley and Ralph Kinton. Mrs. Flora Munford was organist. Amateur night was instituted in 1937 to raise money for the church. This ran monthly for several years and was well received by the public. The nights consisted of local and out of town talent and community singing. In 1940 the Ladies Aid and Mothers' Club were combined and formed into the Society of Christian Service. There is still very active people in church. The young people had an Epworth League which was active for several years and met every Sunday evening.

A log cabin housed the first school in the vicinity, on what is the (Robert) Bob Banks place. This served not only as a place to educate the children but as a church as well. A ditch in the back of the Bob Banks place was dammed up for Baptismal services. Records at the county superintendent's office show that in 1873 the Banks school clerk was J.C. Moore and the teacher was J.W. Givens. Value of the schoolhouse was $300. In 1882 a new grade school was built in downtown Banks; today it is the Banks Cafe. In 1905 two rooms of a new school were built on the old grade school grounds. In 1910 or '11 two rooms were added to the structure, which brought the building to its final size. This building was used until 1949, when the new school building south of town was occupied. In 1959 patrons of the district voted to consolidate with the surrounding schools. This was the first consolidated in Washington county.

Banks Union High School was built in 1919 and was the first Union High School in Washington county. The enrollment of 25 to 30 students did not get to attend the new school until 1920, as it was under construction. They studied in the old legion hall which is now the RNA hall. The first year the students had no books until October or November. They were taught orally by their principal, J.F. Santee and one teacher, Mrs. Myrtle Shehan. Graduating class the first year consisted of one student, Dorothy Wilcox Sellers. She received the honor of graduating from the new building as part of its dedication exercises, and now teaches in Banks grade school. Early in 1960 a new addition was added to the high school.

Banks has always been a sports-minded town. As far back as 1907 a baseball team was organized. John Carstens was manager. One summer the team won 19 straight games. In 1949 Banks had another championship team. The Sunset Pioneers won the state semi-professional baseball championship. They traveled to Idaho to play in the northwest finals. Banks also had three Fourth of July celebrations here. The first was located in back of Hank Vanderzanden's by the creek. Later on the celebrations were held between the slaughterhouse and Weisbeck's on the level ground. The governor of Oregon (James Withycombe) was speaker at one of the celebrations. Girls of the community rode the floats representing Miss Liberty and a girl for each state of the union.

Banks also had a band in its early days, one of the largest such organizations in the area. They called themselves the Comet Band. They played for dances and all other social functions in the area.

There were several early organizations in Banks: The Odd Fellows had their lodge, the hall being built about 1905, and Rebekah Lodge was organized in a few years later. In 1911 the Royal Neighbors of America organized and today is one of the town's leading clubs. Boy Scouts began in the late '20s and were active up to a few years ago. First troop registered was troop 240, sponsored by Methodist Episcopal Church. Camp Fire Girls have been active through the years since 1920.
Girl Scouts were organized in 1939; their leader was Nellie Lien. The girls met in the Legion Hall. They were organized only one year and are the only known troop of Girl Scouts in Banks.

About 1917 a few farmers decided to hold a hog and dairy show. The first year the show was held uptown in a large building. The interest was so great in the enterprise that the farmers and some of the businessmen of the community organized the Banks Hog & Dairy Association. They built big building on the east part of the high school grounds, where the show was held for several years. The show became one of the big events of the year for this part of the state. Presently agitation for a Washington County Fair at Hillsboro and the burden of the show led the men to sell out to the county. The buildings were torn down and moved to Hillsboro. 4-H has been active in the Banks vicinity since the early '30s and the young club members have made good showings at fairs through the years.

In 1925 a woman from Oregon State College came to Mrs. Fischer's home east of town to teach the women of the community the art of making hats. This was the forerunner of extension units in Banks. In 1945 or '46 the Harrison-Banks extension unit was formed from the Harrison Club ... It sponsors 4-H groups from the area and also sponsored the Banks Memorial Library. This was set up in 1952 under leadership of Mrs. H.B. Davies.

Another early organization in this area was Woodmen of the World. The Cemetery Club is another older and active club. It was started by Dr. W.B. Munford, John Carstens, and Mr.s and Mrs. J.J. Hutchins and Henry Carstens. Purpose of the club was to clean the cemetery once a month. Every year since about 1930 the club has sponsored a dinner and bazaar to help with upkeep of the cemetery.

The Grange, which was organized about 1900, was one of the most enjoyable organizations for the whole family. The members had one meeting a month and this was on Saturday, lasting all day. The meeting consisted of the farmers' business meeting, a guest speaker and the county agent. The women would bring a potluck.

Other later farm organizations have been the Farm Bureau, formed in the early 1950s and the Farmers Union, which was formed a few years later.

The Moms and Dads club was organized by parents, teachers, and friends of the high school students, and has helped supply the school with extra equipment. Gilbert Woolen was first president in 1947.

PTA (Parent Teachers Association) was organized in 1950 and Alice Hopkins was its first president. In 1911 the city of Banks incorporated. Joseph Schulmerich was first Mayor. William Moore was mayor for many years. Improvements soon followed. Electric lights were installed in 1923 by what is now PGE company. Street lights were installed and maintained at a dollar a day.

The main streets of Banks were paved in 1923. A number of citizens built concrete sidewalks at this time, also. In 1924 another bond was issued to construct a water system which was installed immediately. Strong springs in the mountains north of Banks are the source of supply. Banks residents can justly be proud of the fine, pure water which flows into the city.

Banks Fire Department was formed in 1917, and was manned by volunteers. They had a one hose cart at this time, and a year later bought another one. A few years ago Banks joined with Manning and Buxton to form the Tri-City Fire Department. In 1954 they bought a new truck and last year they purchased another to add to the force.

In the middle '30s Banks made further strides toward becoming a modern city. A $10,000 bond was voted by the taxpayers of Banks Union High School District for a gymnasium. With the help of WPA (Works Progress Administration) funds this building was completed about 1936. It was one of the most modern gymnasiums in the country.

In 1935 the citizens of Banks voted a $10,000 bond for construction of a sewer system. With WPA labor the sewer was completed the following fall.

In 1937 the grade school gymnasium was built, also with WPA help. A $5,000 bond was approved by the voters of the district. It included a playshed and basketball floor which can be used for an auditorium. In 1949 this building was moved to the new school grounds. It now contains several classrooms, kitchen and the basketball floor.

In about 1924 the United Railway was built through Banks and on to Vernonia. An attempt by the railway to establish a town at Wilkesboro about a mile southeast of Banks failed. A store and depot and several residences were built on small tracts of land.

Later another railroad -- Gales Creek & Wilson River -- was built from Glenwood, passing about a mile south of Banks and joining the United Railroad at Wilkesboro. The PR&N Railroad was taken over by Southern Pacific, which maintained a depot agent in Banks until the early '30s when the depot was closed.

The building was rented to Gribner Bros., who used it for sorting and packing ferns and greenery. They also had a cold storage plant which they used in their business. The business hired a great many people all along the coast to gather the greens. The ferns were shipped in carload lots to cities in the east.

In 1929 Calir McPeak had a shoe shop and filling station in Lipperts' little building uptown. The cheese factory asked him to haul milk, and this was the beginning of McPeak's Trucking Service.

Banks also had a newspaper, with a Mr. Farnsworth as the first editor. Mr. and Mrs. H.A. Williams ran the paper successfully for several years. The name of the paper then was the Banks Herald. When Williams' health failed they sold out and moved to Forest Grove. When Williams died Mrs. Williams returned to Banks and ran the confectionery.

The paper changed hands several times and the name was changed to Banks Tribune. In 1925 Dean Sellers was editor. These items were taken from the Feb. 6, 1925 issue:

The biggest news story was the sluicing down Vogt Hill north of Banks. This was done by washing down the hill with water, with the donated labor of six or seven men and the use of the city water supply. Some 700 Yards were moved between Jan. 23 and Feb. 5.

Banks theater was playing the "Call of the Canyon," with Richard Dix, Lois Watson and Marjorie Daw. Admission prices were 30 and 10 cents. Banks Mercantile advertised brooms for 67 cents, sugar was 10 pounds for 68 cents. Banks Mercantile advertised Brooms for 67 cents, Crystal White soap for 10 bars for 43 cents and Sea Port tomatoes, six cans for 79 cents.

Banks Lumber Company had a sale on home furnishings: Gold Seal Congoleum rugs were reduced from $17 to $15.30, 40-pound mattresses from $12.15 to $11.03 and heavy ivory iron beds $11.30, cash price of $10.10.

Hamilton Motor Company of Forest Grove was advertising cars at the following prices: 1919 Ford roadster car $350 and Chevrolet touring car $350 and 1924 Chevrolet couple $525, all completely equipped with accessories.

"So Big," by Edna Ferber, was running in serial form in the tribune.

Banks High played Beaverton basketball double-header resulting in a victory for Banks men's team of 21-5 and defeat for the girls' team, 16-7. The game was rough throughout.

About 1925 two Japanese (American) families moved to Banks, (the father's names were) Martin Kinoshita and Charles Sunamato. They rented the hill land north of town belonging to Clell Carstens, and set out large fields of strawberries. This was the beginning of the industry in the county. In a few years other Japanese came to this vicinity and soon most available strawberry land was set out to berries.

White people, seeing the success Japanese (American's) were having, began to set out strawberries, too.

Picking time is always a time of activity and prosperity for Banks. Nearly everyone is working in the berries, either in the fields or in the processing plants. When the industry began most of the berries were handled through the fresh berry market. Some were shipped to Canada and others to points east. A few went to canneries. As the industry grew the berries were barreled and placed in cold storage. Today most of the berries are frozen.

First barreler in town was R. D. Bodle Company, located north of town across the tracks. Next Baker-Kelly Company came, located near Bodle company. Today Kelly-Farquhar and Co. has the buildings once used by both plants.

Gribner Bros., who had been in the greenery business, were next. Today there are Banks Frozen Foods in the old creamery building. United Growers and Sunset Packing Company a mile north of town.

The organization that has put Banks on the map is the Sunset Chamber of Commerce. This was formed in 1946 by a group of men who wished to develop the communities of Banks, Manning and Buxton. Located in the center of the strawberry growing industry, it is unique in its ownership of a 20-acre park. It also has a gun club, ball field and large hall.



Links



Timeline



Year

Event
1860s

The building that would become Greenville's first school was built, a log cabin. It was used until the 1950s.
1870s

Greenville was founded, two miles south of present day Banks; it was the meeting place for trappers and settlers nearby, with a post office two stores.
1873

A log cabin housed the first school in what would become the Banks area. In this year, the school clerk was J.C. Moore and the teacher was J.W. Givens; the value of the building was $300.
1882

A new grade school is built in the center of town, today it is the Banks Cafe.
1888

A cooperative creamery was established near the Gorge Schneider place, run by J.J. Hartley and Mr. Montgomery Turner.
1890

The first blacksmith shop was owned by Ben Dooley in 1890. He later moved his residence and shop to Banks.

Another blacksmith shop was operated by Al Young, and he also moved from Greenville to Banks when the town began to develop.
1896

John Beker and son built a basket factory.
1900

The Grange was organized.

Early in this decade Robert M. Banks opened the first meat market, The Banks Market, on the NE corner of Main & Market Streets.
1901

Montgomery Turner started a store with his brother, Ewell, in anticipation of Banks becoming the new location for Greenville. They supplied construction workers who were putting in rail.
1903

Pacific Railway and Navigation Company laid their rails to connect Hillsboro with Tillamook.
1904

Forest Grove's Fred Watrous establishes a store in Banks.

A mercantile business was established by W.S. Atlee. Mrs. Atlee had a millinery shop upstairs over the store, and also did sewing. The Atlee's were the grandparents of famous children's author Beverly Cleary.
1905

The Odd Fellows built their lodge in this year; Rebekah Lodge was organized in a few years later.

Two rooms of a new school were built on the old grade school grounds.
1906

The post office moved from Greenville to Banks. The town was named after John Banks, who owned a considerable amount of land in the area.
1907

The first local baseball team was organized, with John Carstens as manager.
1907-1908

Miss Flora Munford was a local photographer (see Oregon Photographers by Thomas Raymond).
1908

George McGraw built what was known as the Parmley Hall. The lower part was a chopper and feed business, the upper was for recreation, such as roller skating.

The first two doctors were Dr. Burger, who also operated the first drugstore, and Dr. Killingsworth. In the spring of 1908, Dr. and Mrs. W.B. Munford moved here from Kansas, and soon built up an extensive practice covering miles around the town on horseback (later by car).
1909

Cass Wilson had a saloon and hotel near where the city hall is today; there was a bakery down near Parmley Hall.

The Washington County Bank was organized by enterprising citizens. Nathaniel Burnett was first president, and Williams Moore second.

The Methodist Episcopal church, now Banks Community United Methodist Church, was dedicated; Rev. C.L. Creasy was first pastor and Clyde Stewart was pastor at dedication.
1910-1911

Two final rooms were added to the grade school. A view of the town in this year can be found here.
1911

Incorporation as a city; Joseph Schulmerich was first Mayor.

The Royal Neighbors of America (RNA) organized.
1912

Mothers' Club was organized, and Mrs. FLora Munford was first president.
1913

Bob Banks sold his meat market to Charlie Kessler and Roy Stafford about 1913
1914

Legion Hall had a theater in it, which was owned by J.E. Parmley. Ray Parmley ran the projector.
1917

Local farmers decide to hold a hog and dairy show, and the interest was so great that business leaders and community members formed Banks Hog & Dairy Association. It was held in buildings on the high school grounds, which were moved to Hillsboro when the local Banks show became the Washington County Fair.

Banks Fire Department was formed, manned by volunteers.
1918

The Banks Dairy Association was formed; a cheese factory and expert cheese maker was hired. This factory later became the Banks Frozen Foods plant.
1919

The Atlee's sold their store and retired.

Banks Union High School was built, while the 30 or so students studied in Legion Hall (RMA Hall).
1920

Camp Fire Girls organized and were active at least until the early 1960s.

30 students enrolled in Banks High School.
1923

Electric lights were installed by what is now PGE company.

The main streets of the city were paved.
1924

A bond was issued to construct a water system which was installed immediately.
1925

Oregon State College teacher came to Banks to teach local women the art of making Hats, a forerunner of extension schooling.

Japanese American families moved to Banks and began the local berry industry in the county. Mr. Kinoshita and Mr. Sunamato, with their families, rented the hill land north of town belonging to Clell Carstens, and set out large fields of strawberries.
late 1920s

Boy Scouts began, with the first troop registered Troop 240 and sponsored by the Methodist Episcopal Church. They were active through the late 1950s.
1930

The Cemetery Club was formed to clean the cemetery once a month.

4-H began locally early in this decade.
1933

Train service to banks was discontinued, and the mail began to arrive locally by bus.
1936

The Banks Union High School District built a new gymnasium with the help local taxpayers and WPA (Works Progress Administration) funds. It was one of the most modern gymnasiums in the country.

With WPA labor and taxpayer funding, a sewer system was completed.

Mr. Kerr, the owner of one of the first blacksmith shops, became ill and had to quit the business.
1937

A grade school gymnasium was built, with WPA help and taxpayer funding.

Amateur Night was instituted to raise money for the Methodist Episcopal church.
1939

Girl Scouts were organized for one year only. Their leader was Nellie Lien and the group met at Legion Hall.
1940

The Ladies Aid and the Mothers' Club were combined and formed into the Society of Christian Service. The young people had an Epworth League which was active for several years and met every Sunday evening.
1944

Washington County Bank became affiliated with the Commercial Bank of HiIlsboro.
1945-46

The Harrison-Banks extension unit was formed from the Harrison Club, a sponsor of local cultural and extracurricular activities.
1949

The Sunset Pioneers won the state semi-professional baseball championship.

The grade school gymnasium, built in 1937, was moved to the new school grounds.
1950

The PTA was organized, and Alice Hopkins was first president.


The Farm Bureau was formed early in this decade, and the Farmers Union a few years later.
1952

Harrison-Banks extension unit sponsored the creation of Banks Memorial Library, under the leadership of Mrs. H.B. Davies.
1954

Banks Fire Department, which at this time was the Tri-City Fire Department, bought a new truck.
1959

The district patrons voted to consolidate with the surrounding schools -- the first consolidated district in Washington County.
1960

Banks Fire Department buys second new truck.

A new addition was added to the high school.