Bank of Jefferson (Location Key)


There are at least two different Jefferson banks in Faulkner's fictions. One - "the old bank" or "the Bank of Jefferson" - was opened before the Civil War, and the other, the "new bank," was founded by Bayard Sartoris in the 1890s (The Mansion, 37). Chronologically that is just early enough for the "new bank" to be the one to which, in Go Down, Moses, Ike takes Lucas on Lucas' 21st birthday to deposit the thousand dollars the McCaslin family is giving him as a legacy from the white slave-owner who was his grandfather. But we assume that Lucas keeps his money in the older one. The day the two cousins - one white; one bi-racial, which is 'black' in the eyes of white Yoknapatawpha - came into the bank to deposit all that money in the Negro's account was part of "the minor annals of the town" (105). (In "Gold Is Not Always" Lucas has "near three thousand dollars in the bank," 227.) We don't know anything about the man or men who originally opened the Bank of Jefferson, but in 1905 it is run by Lucius Priest I (The Reivers, 26). About a generation after that, Elly's fiance Philip is a cashier in "the bank" - we presume the older one ("Elly," 213). And just a bit later Flem Snopes moves his money back and forth between the two banks as part of his scheme to become president on the Sartoris bank.

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