Just 14 months after construction began, the new Farmers and Merchants Bank building opened it’s doors at 88 South 6th Street on March 2nd, 1942. Ten days later this article appeared in the Minneapolis Tribune,
Jiving Spooks Haunt Bank Building But Skeptical Cops Give Up The Ghosts
Farmers and mechanics Bank building, current architectural wonder of the loop, Wednesday night unfolded its crowning glory two full-fledged spooks. In keeping with the modernity of the building opened last week-the spooks occasionally whistle bits of current song hits between snatches of an unintelligible conversation. They rustle papers constantly, presumably while paging through ledgers which bank hunting ghosts are known to do.
Humpty Dumpty Heart
When opening bars of “The White Cliffs of Dover” floated to his ears the bank watchmen investigated assuming some employee had stayed overtime without notifying him. But there was no one in the main banking room, no one in the boiler room, no one in any of the numerous private offices. A police squad he called found the place quiet and its members left after advising the watchmen to take something for his nerves.
Give Up The Ghosts
A second squad called when the noise resumed, entered to the strains of “Humpty Dumpty Heart” and quickly called for help- two detective cars and another patrol squad. Then the eight policeman, after moments of frantic scrambling from floor to floor suddenly relaxed and laughed when one of them determined the noise was coming from the ventilator grill. “That thing must open into some other building, eh?” he asked the watchmen “No” the watchmen gulped, “It goes to the roof.” The roof, when the police searched it was empty. The rustling, the mumbled conversation in the whistling- “Deep in the Heart of Texas” -continued. Bank officials can lay their own ghosts Thursday, the policeman concluded and they gave up the search.
A few years after the F&M moved in to their new digs, they outgrew them. In 1963, the bank spent 6 million dollars to demolish their 5-story offices and build a new 11-story tower. At the end of the 1970’s profits fell off sharply. In 1983 the F&M bank building was acquired by Carl Pohlad’s Marquette Bank holding company. In 2007 the building was extensively restored and remodeled for reuse as a 214-room Westin Hotel. These days the old the teller counter serves as a bar and the safety deposit vault is used as a wine cellar.