Redmond City Landmarks
Redmond State Bank, 7841 Leary Way NE
Since 1955, this 1911 structure has been home to Brad Best Realty. Before the real estate office occupied the space, this building served as Redmond's first bank. A 1928 addition on the west side housed Redmond's first automatic telephone company.
The Redmond State Bank, was the first bank on the Eastside of Lake Washington, (it predated Kirkland and is actually the parent bank of Kirkland State Bank in my interview with C.A. Shinstrom’s son) was constructed in 1911 and made of red brick; and remains as it did when it was constructed. It is also the only building to existing on the lot – a unique character in a thriving city.
Founded by Charles A. Shinstrom, the bank is said to have had very hard working bankers, and loyal and honest customers. Ole Skjarstad, owner of the first boot and shoe repair in Redmond was the first depositor. When the bank opened, the concept of depositing money was not very popular with the older farmers in the area. Charles Shinstrom went by foot, bicycle, and row boat throughout the area to encourage people to deposit their money in the bank. (Again from my interview with C.A. Shinstrom's son who told me all about the founding of the bank by his father) Customers were also considered loyal because after having lost or damaged loan notes, honest customers paid what they knew they owed, and the bank did not lose money. After operating as a bank for nearly 50 years there had only been one robbery.
The bank was in business until 1955, when the building was bought by its current owner Brad Best Reality.