- Banking & Financial Services
Past, present and future
It started small
Nestled halfway between the Willamette Valley and the California border is Canyonville, Oregon, a timber town founded by pioneers who saw opportunity on the banks of the South Umpqua River. Through generations of hard work, the community built what they needed: a school, a church, a grocery store, a diner, an auto shop. And when the citizens of Canyonville needed a better place than the local watering hole to cash their checks, they came together and built a bank.
On November 14, 1953, South Umpqua State Bank opened its doors with just six employees and a single branch housed in the Canyonville Masonic Lodge. Everyone pitched in, from sorting checks to taking out the trash. Loans were made based on a person's character and were sealed with a handshake. It's how Umpqua's founders believed business should be done, and (with the addition of a bit more paperwork) it's at the heart of how we do business today.
What's in a name?
We get more than a few questions about our name -- most often ''how do you pronounce it?'' Here's a tip: It's ''ump'' as in ''umpire'', and ''qua'' as in ''aqua.''
We share the Umpqua name with a river, a valley and a national forest, as well as with several indigenous tribes who shaped the spirit of the Southern Oregon region for thousands of years. Our name is a tie to our roots, and through it, we're proud to pay tribute to our rich heritage.