First State Bank has a long served New London and surrounding communities as an independent community bank. While First State Bank has been in business since 1933, the history of the bank actually dates back to August of 1895 when the First National Bank of New London was established. A second New London bank was organized in 1912 under the name of the Farmers State Bank of New London. First National Bank and Farmers State Bank consolidated on April 22, 1933, and opened under the charter previously granted to Farmers State Bank with a new name known as the “First State Bank of New London.” Frank L. Zaug was elected as the new bank's President with Jacob Werner as Vice President.
The new First State Bank of New London occupied the building of the original First National Bank which was located on North Water Street in downtown New London and was constructed around 1909 by W.E. Polley. The bank building was remodeled extensively several times since 1933 as it continued to improve its services. In 1979, the bank constructed a separate building to the northwest of the main bank building that would replace the existing single lane drive up window at the rear of the building with six lanes for drive up banking.
In September of 1986, First State Bank of New London began an extensive 18-month construction and remodeling project. The Cristy Department Store building which was located to the west of the bank, was purchased and razed. The west half of the new building was then constructed on that site and in June of 1987 the entire bank staff and operations were moved to the new portion of the building. The original bank building received extensive remodeling. In January 1988, the entire project was complete, doubling the bank's office space to 25,000 square feet.
The bank's name was shortened to “First State Bank” in 1989—a reflection of the bank’s growth to other communities beginning with the purchase of the Bank One office in Clintonville in 1989. Additional bank locations in neighboring communities were added in the coming years: Dale in 1994, Manawa in 1996, and Waupaca and Cecil in 1997.
Today First State Bank continues to serve its six communities as an independent community bank.