Many Library Events and Liquefying the Rubey Bank

January 14, 2021

Golden Eye Candy – Chris Davell – click to enlarge

Virtual Golden

10-10:30AM Mid-Morning Meditation
10:15AM Preschool Time with the Library
3-5PM Hard Times Writing Workshop
6-7PM Virtual Qs and Brews
6:30PM Economic Development Commission


Golden History Moment

Rubey Bank Building at 12th & Washington – Golden History Museum collection – click to enlarge

84 Years Ago
The January 14, 1937 Colorado Transcript reported on the sale of remaining assets of the Rubey National Bank. This was the last phase of liquidating Golden’s hometown bank.

In March of 1933, President Roosevelt declared a Bank Holiday to end a nationwide run on the banks. Banks were allowed to reopen after auditors examined their books and determined that they were sound. Unfortunately for Golden, the Rubey Bank was never approved to reopen.


Woods & Rubey Bank – Golden History Museum collection – click to enlarge

The Rubey Bank began in 1893 when W.S. Wood and Jesse Rubey bought the National Bank of Commerce. Jesse’s brother Harry worked in the bank and eventually rose to become its president. When W.S. Wood retired in 1915, the bank was renamed from Woods-Rubey to the Rubey Bank.

Bank President Harry Rubey died in 1925. Shortly before his death, he sold his bank stock to brother Jesse, who returned to Golden to run the bank for two years. At that point, E. A. Phinney became the bank president.


“Dawn of the West,” the mural in the Mountaineering Center, was donated by Jesse Rubey in honor of his late brother Harry click to enlarge

For about six months after the bank closed in 1933, Phinney stayed on as “Conservator.” During that time, the bank was open to allow access to safe deposit boxes, but accepted no deposits and allowed no withdrawals.

In September of 1933, John Q. Adams was appointed as receiver. While there was pressure on Adams to sell the bank’s assets as quickly as possible, so that depositors could regain at least some of their deposits, Adams proceeded in a slow and methodical way to examine the assets and sell off those that would bring reasonable returns. In 1933, property and bond values were quite depressed, but within a year or two, they began to regain their value.

The Transcript’s first estimate of what depositors could expect to receive was 65% of their money. Adams paid the first “dividend” to the bank’s depositors in April of 1934–13 months after the bank had closed. This first installment was 37-1/2% of the funds that depositors had placed in the bank.

A second dividend followed in June of 1935, which returned an additional 30% of deposits. The Transcript–feeling more optimistic at that point–thought that the final proceeds might reach 80% or even 90% of deposits.

In the end, after that final sale of assets in January of 1937, depositors received 102.44% of the money they had deposited in the bank.


First National Bank of Golden from the Golden History Museum collection – click to enlarge

Golden was so pleased with Receiver Adams that they asked him to stay and start a new bank. He did, and in June of 1937, the First National Bank of Golden opened in the Rubey Bank building.

Four years is a a long time for a town to be without a bank. In 1935, the Transcript commented that One of the most valuable assets of Golden is idle…. The vaults of the Golden bank…contain not a single dime. Folks must now, for security, resort to those primitive methods, the old clock, the bedtick, and the old sock.

When the new bank opened in June of 1937, the Transcript wrote that Golden had been lucky.

No one has been murdered for their money and there have been no organized robberies for cash hauls…. For the last four years there has been scarcely a business house in the town that, in order to cash checks and to accommodate its patrons, has not had to carry more cash on hand than was felt to be really safe.


Many thanks to the Golden History Museum for providing the online cache of historic Transcripts and to the Golden Transcript for documenting our history since 1866!


Coronavirus Update

Public Health References
CDC * Colorado * Jefferson County * City of Golden

Jefferson County is at Level Orange, “High Risk. Here’s the most recent Coronavirus report from Jeffco Public Health’s Case Summary Page:

Cases in Jeffco – Tues: 32,062 | Thurs: 32,360 (+298)
Deaths in Jeffco –
Tues: 675 | Thurs: 681 (+6)
Currently Hospitalized in Jeffco –
Tues: 81 | Thurs: 64 (+17)
Known Cases in Golden –
Thurs: 1193 *
Recovered –
Tues: 29,444 | Thurs: 29,650 (+198)

* Golden cases are updated on Monday and Thursday. The other stats are updated Monday through Friday.

Mines COVID Testing | Jeffco Fairgrounds COVID Testing | School of Mines COVID-19 case page. | Stage 1 fire restrictions | Sign up for exposure notifications.