When California achieved statehood in 1850, 27 counties (including Tuolumne County) were formed, and by 1852, post offices had been established in Big Oak Flat and Garrote, and a constable, judge, and tax collector appointed. By the mid 1850s, the camps were becoming thriving towns, boasting a population of approximately 1,500 miners. Here, and across the Gold Country, local banks and the bankers were providing a range of valuable services from converting gold to cash, safely housing savings, extending credit to merchants and residents, and supporting the growth of the communities.
With all that’s changed in the digital era, Mechanics Bank still provides the kind of value folks have always turned to and expected from their local banker since the Gold Rush. 49er Festival Platinum sponsor Mechanics Bank is all about connection…to individual clients and to the communities they serve. They are a California bank serving California communities from the Imperial Valley to the Cascades and Klamath Mountains, and from the coastal cities and towns to the Sierra Nevada foothills.
Vice President, Banking Services Manager Tara Durland is all about connection. “I absolutely love the community I live and work in and I’m blessed to call Groveland my home. Mechanics Bank has that small community connection that I personally value. We are a full service bank that always is here for our clients.”
Helping customers adapt to changing economic conditions is a big part of the role banks can play as valued local partners. Working through real estate booms and busts and weathering economic and physical storms like COVID-19’s impact on travel and tourism is what makes a local banking relationship worthwhile.
“We were able to secure every PPP loan for businesses that applied with us during the pandemic, helping secure some financial safety during a very difficult time,” said Durland. “The branch also remained open throughout the pandemic. We have helped multiple clients take advantage of the historic low rates by either refinancing or purchasing a new home.”
Mechanics Bank understands the significance of businesses in the community and is working hard to see everyone bounce back from the pandemic. They currently have multiple promotions going to help finance every need a business client may have including real estate, equipment financing up to 100%, and small business lending. Durland's goal is to partner with her clients to help them meet their business goals.
Tara is also proud to state that throughout the years, Mechanics Bank has put a lot back into the community through donations and service hours, and she’s a role model for that value. Last Christmas, Tara and the team at Mechanics Bank organized the U.S. Marines Toys for Tots drive locally. Thanks to their relationships with and donations from so many residents, local businesses and organizations like the Savage Diggins who donated six new bicycles, children in and around our community woke up to some wonderful gifts on Christmas morning.
Supporting the 49er Festival is just one of the many ways our local Mechanics Bank serves our entire community. Stop in and say ‘howdy’ to Tara and the team. Be sure to say ‘thanks’ for sponsoring the 49er Festival. And if you’ve got a gold nugget burning a hole in your pocket, ask them to set you up with a retirement savings account!
Mechanics Bank is again one of America’s best banks based on growth, credit quality and profitability, according to Forbes. In its 13th annual report issued Feb. 3, 2022, the global media outlet ranked the Bank 32nd among the nation’s 100 largest publicly traded banks and thrifts.