New Bedford Credit Unions Have a Long History in Massachusetts

Credit unions were first started in New England before anywhere else in the country. St Mary’s Bank Credit Union in New Hampshire was the first credit union established in the United States back in 1908. In fact, the American Credit Union Museum now occupies the same location as the original St Mary’s. In New Bedford, St Anne Credit Union was established on August 3, 1911, and is the oldest credit union in Southeastern Massachusetts.

We have enjoyed a long history of serving local residents and currently have over 3,100 members with over $18,000,000 in assets. To join St Anne Credit Union, individuals need to work or live in either Bristol or Plymouth county. Some unions have different requirements, such as belonging to a particular industry or trade union. However, St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford only requires that the applicants be local to be eligible for membership.

History of Credit Unions
In the grand scheme of things, the modern history of the credit union dates back to 1852, just 59 years before the establishment of St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford. Franz Hermann Schulze-Delitzsch consolidated two financial projects into one to create the first credit union in the world. Over time, Schulze-Delitzsch went on to develop both the first urban credit union system and the first rural credit union in Germany. By the time Franz died in 1888, credit unions had been established throughout Europe in France, Italy, Austria, England, and the Netherlands. In 1901, the first North American credit union was established in Canada, followed seven years later by St Mary’s in New Hampshire in 1908.

What is a Credit Union?
Similar to banks and other types of financial institutions, credit unions offer all of the same services that you need to manage your money. Credit savings accounts, credit checking accounts, and other financial opportunities, such as money market accounts, certificates of deposit (CD), and individual retirement accounts (IRA), are available to members. When you join St Anne Credit Union, you gain access to all of the member-only options for growing and managing your finances. Credit union hours in New Bedford at St Anne Credit Union are similar to what you would expect from typical banking hours as well, plus online banking opportunities are also available for credit union members.

The primary difference between a credit union in New Bedford and a banking institution is that at a bank you are a customer, whereas at a credit union you are a member. Members have a voice and profit from the success of the credit union. Customers don’t have a say-so and the shareholders of the bank profit from the success of the bank. Profits are shared with members in the form of reduced fees and increased interest through New Bedford credit savings programs. Credit unions are not-for-profit, not non-profit, and provide their members with the opportunity to vote for the board of directors, regardless of the amount of money they have invested in checking, savings, and other financial opportunities.

Deposit Insurance Protection
Federal credit unions are chartered by and overseen by the NCUA, which stands for the National Credit Union Administration. Much like the way that the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) provides deposit insurance to banks, the NCUA provides deposit insurance to credit unions. This gives members of our credit union in New Bedford peace of mind in knowing that their deposits are federally protected, just as they would be at a traditional banking institution.

ATM Locations in Southeastern Massachusetts
In addition to extending the basic credit union hours in New Bedford by offering online banking services, when you join St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford, you will also gain access to SUM ATMs throughout Massachusetts. SUM ATMs don’t charge ATM fees to members of St Anne Credit Union, providing additional savings and convenience. The best way to avoid ATM surcharges when you need to withdraw funds and you aren’t near our local credit union in New Bedford, is to use a SUM ATM.

SUM ATM machines can be found in Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Fall River, Mattapoisett, New Bedford, Westport, and in other locations all over Massachusetts. Citizens Bank of MA, First Citizens Federal CU, BankFive, Bank of Fall River, and Citizens Union Savings Bank are just some of the well-known institutions that feature SUM ATMs with no fees for St Anne Credit Union members. Visit our website to see a full list or contact our local branch for more information on SUM ATM locations near you. Give us a call at 508-993-0011 or visit our location on Union Street in New Bedford.