Birmingham Trust National Bank

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This article is about the local bank before its transition into the regional SouthTrust Bank.
BTNB logos 5.png

Birmingham Trust National Bank (BTNB) was a large bank which operated in Birmingham from 1887 to 1982, when it was rebranded as SouthTrust Bank under a regional holding company.

The bank, the sixth to be chartered in Birmingham, was founded on December 9, 1887 as Birmingham Trust and Savings Company with $500,000 in capital. It moved into offices in the Elyton Land Co. building on 20th Street North on June 20, 1888. The first board of directors was headed by Henry Caldwell with Samuel Murphy as vice-president and M. G. Hudson as cashier.

From 1891 to 1901 it leased offices in the Morris Block at 19th Street and 1st Avenue North. It constructed a banking office at 112 20th Street North in 1902, and rebuilt it as a monumental Neoclassical structure in 1922.

The name was changed to Birmingham Trust National Bank (BTNB) when it secured a national charter in 1946. It opened its first "neighborhood branches" in East Lake, Mountain Brook, and Five Points West in the late 1940s and early 1950s. A new BTNB Southside office was completed at 24th Street and 6th Avenue South in 1955.

The bank erected a 7-story office building behind its 20th Street banking office in 1964.

BTNB was the first financial institution in the nation to introduce what was termed at the time an "automated central information system" in 1971. It trademarked the term "Anytime Teller" for its first automated teller machines in 1978. Voice actor June Wetzel provided the pre-recorded audio prompts that distinguished the service.

After regional acquisitions, the holding company SouthTrust Corporation was formed in 1981. The corporation rebranded all bank branches as SouthTrust Bank in 1982.


BTNB branches