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This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

First Union Bank Corporation

by Julian M. Pleasants, 2006

The Jefferson Standard-Union National Bank Building, Charlotte, 1955. Image from the North Carolina Digital Collections.The First Union Bank Corporation was founded in 1908 by H. M. Victor as the Union National Bank, which developed a strong economic base through innovation. Union National was the first Charlotte bank to open a branch (1947), the first to offer a flat-fee checking account, and the first to offer a bank charge card. In 1958 Union National merged with the First National Bank and Trust Company of Asheville to form the First Union National Bank of North Carolina. Under the leadership of Cliff Cameron and Edward E. Crutchfield, First Union diversified and grew through acquisitions in the 1960s through the 1980s. A 1985 merger with Northwestern Financial Corporation made First Union the state's second-largest bank. Shortly after interstate banking deregulation in 1985, First Union established branches in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C.

With headquarters in Charlotte, First Union was by the late 1990s the nation's sixth-largest banking company. The bank had 45,000 employees, served 11 million customers, and had nearly 2,000 retail offices nationwide. In 2001 First Union merged with another North Carolina banking giant, Wachovia Corporation of Winston-Salem, and continued under the Wachovia name with headquarters in Charlotte. The new banking corporation became the fourth-largest in the country, with $499 billion in assets and more than 95,000 employees.

Update from N.C. Government & Heritage Library staff: 

In 2008, Wells Fargo & Company acquired Wachovia Corporation, including First Union.

Reference:

Cliff Cameron, First Union Corporation: A Bank Holding Company (1980).

Additional Resources:

"First Union Is Now Wells Fargo." Wells Fargo. http://www.wellsfargo.com/about/corporate/firstunion (accessed November 26, 2012).

First Union Bank website archived at Archive.org: http://web.archive.org/web/20010712012249/http://www.firstunion.com/ (accessed November 26, 2012).

Image Credits:

"Jefferson Standard-Union National Bank Building, Charlotte, nine floors, containing 180,000 sq. ft., built by Southeastern Construction Co." The E.S.C. Quarterly 13. No. 1-2. Winter-Spring 1955. p.92. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/u?/p249901coll22,451982 (accessed November 26, 2012).

Comments

Comment: 

Did First Union have an eighth street Facility in Ft, Lauderdale, Florida in 1998. Does the number 00667 give a clue to the exact address? Writing a report on specifically bank changes and reason.

Comment: 

Hello,

First Union merged with Wachovia in 2001 and then Wachovia merged with Wells Fargo in 2008. I suggest contacting a library in Ft. Lauderdale to see if they have a city directory that shows where First Union Banks were located before its merger with Wachovia, which occurred April 16, 2001.

Good luck!

Erin Bradford, Government and Heritage Library

Comment: 

looking for lost stock bought through NJ National Bank merger Trenton NJ>

Comment: 

What was the price per share paid by First Union to acquire the Northwestern Bank in 1985?

Comment: 

Hi Traci,

Thank you for visiting NCpedia and for sharing this question. Unfortunately, we do not have this specific information with the article.

Here are a few resources that you might find useful:

First, the University of Florida Libraries has a resource page for locating historical stock price information. http://answers.businesslibrary.uflib.ufl.edu/faq/24508

The Harvard Business School has a similar research resource. https://asklib.library.hbs.edu/faq/47357

You might also find reference librarians at your local public library helpful. 

I hope this helps!

Best wishes,

Kelly Agan, Government & Heritage Library

Comment: 

WHEN WAS FIRST UNION HOME EQUITY BANK OPENED IN KINSTON NC ? THANKS

Comment: 

Hello Ruby,

Thank you for using NCpedia and taking the time to leave your question!

I am forwarding your question to Reference Services at the NC Government and Heritage Library. A librarian will contact you soon, if you are still looking for this information.

Good luck with your research!

Laurie Reeves, NC Government & Heritage Library

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