Federal Reserve Bank of Boston

This timeline was created as part of the System-wide Centennial celebrations by Barbara DeBiase, Diane Shepard, and David Greene.

For any comments, questions, or corrections, please contact Kelly Francis at Kelly.Francis@bos.frb.org.

1907-10-16 14:29:16

Panic of 1907

Augustus Heinze ignites the Panic of 1907. When the Butte, Montana, high-flyer tries unsuccessfully to corner the copper market, he triggers a run on banks affiliated with the industry.

1908-05-27 14:29:16

Aldrich-Vreeland Act

In the face of the Panic of 1907, and the nation's reliance on the private sector to contain it, Senator Nelson Aldrich (R-RI) and Representative Edward Vreeland (R-NY) sponsor legislation which establishes the National Monetary Commission to analyze state, national, and international banking systems, and issue recommendations for reform.

1910-11-01 07:22:30

Jekyll Island Conference

Senator Nelson Aldrich invites several bankers and economic scholars to attend a conference on Jekyll Island to discuss plans to restructure America's banking system and eliminate the possibility of future economic panics.

1912-11-05 14:00:45

Woodrow Wilson

The Democratic Party sweeps the U.S. House, Senate, and White House. Woodrow Wilson is elected President on a platform that promises reform in numerous areas including banking, at the time generally referred to as the "currency problem."

1913-06-19 05:40:09

Notable Media (1913)

One of the most popular songs is "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling."

1913-12-15 11:58:07

Federal Reserve Act

President Woodrow Wilson signs the Federal Reserve Act (H.R. 7837, Pub. L. No 63-43) into law, providing for the establishment of up to 12 Federal Reserve Banks to coordinate policy with a seven-member Federal Reserve Board in Washington, D.C.

1914-06-11 13:18:49

Notable Media (1914)

One of the most popular songs is "It's A Long Way To Tipperary."

1914-11-04 07:22:30

Alfred Aiken

Alfred L. Aiken, former president of the Worcester National Bank, is appointed as the first Governor of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and serves until 1917.

1914-11-16 14:00:45

Boston Fed Opens for Business

The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston opens on November 16. The Bank is initially housed in the Converse Building at 101 Milk Street and is staffed by three officers and 14 clerks. Vault space is borrowed at the Sub-Treasury.

1915-06-03 13:18:49

Notable Media (1915)

One of the most popular songs is "Carry Me Back to Old Virginny."

1915-09-01 08:13:51

Permanent Headquarters

The Bank moves into permanent quarters at 53 State Street, the Merchants Exchange Building.

1916-01-03 14:29:16

Foreign Check Expansion

The Bank takes over the Foreign Check Department of the Boston Clearing House.

1916-06-15 16:26:15

Notable Media (1916)

One of the most popular songs is "M-O-T-H-E-R (A Word That Means the World to Me)."

1917-04-02 21:34:19

First Liberty Loan Drive

The Emergency Loan Act authorizes the issue of $5 billion in bonds at 3.5 percent interest for the First Liberty Loan drive to be overseen by the Federal Reserve Banks.

1917-04-06 08:13:51

The U.S. declares war on Germany and enters World War I

U.S. Army World War I recruitment poster shows Uncle Sam facing forward, pointing his finger, and appealing to patriotism.

1917-06-14 16:26:15

Notable Media (1917)

One of the most popular songs is "Over There."

1917-10-01 21:09:04

Second Liberty Loan Drive

The Second Liberty Loan drive, also overseen by the Federal Reserve Banks, begins with an offer of $3 billion in bonds at 4 percent interest. A total of five Liberty Loans, including the 1919 Victory Loan, are administered.

1917-12-03 02:50:20

Charles A. Morss

Charles A. Morss is appointed as Governor of the Boston Fed and serves until 1922.

1918-02-02 21:09:04

Boston Fed Baseball Team

The Boston Fed baseball team of 1918 has a very successful season, ending with a game in New York against the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

1918-06-04 16:26:15

Notable Media (1918)

The first Pulitzer Prize for Fiction is awarded to Ernest Pool for "His Family;" and one of the most popular songs is "Oh! How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning."

1918-11-11 11:32:53

Armistice Day

The Great War ended on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of November, 1918. The anniversary was celebrated as "Armistice Day" for over thirty years until President Eisenhower changed the name to "Veteran's Day" in honor of American veterans of all wars.

1919-01-05 03:21:58

Boston Molasses Flood

A 2.3 million gallon tank of molasses bursts and the contents rush through the streets of the North End at a speed of 35 miles per hour. The bulk of the devastation is caused by a "wall of molasses" at least eight feet high which demolishes entire buildings, upends vehicles, and buries horses. More than 150 people are injured and 21 killed.

1919-02-13 06:47:59

Federal Reserve Society Dinner

The First Annual Dinner of the Federal Reserve Society is held at Ford Hall in Boston on February 13, 1919.

1919-03-01 00:09:36

Debate Team

The Federal Reserve Society Debate Team sponsors a spirited debate.

1919-06-04 16:26:15

Notable Media (1919)

The Pulitzer Prize for Fiction is awarded to Booth Tarkington for "The Magnificent Ambersons;" and a popular song is "A Pretty Girl is Like a Melody."

1919-06-07 00:09:36

First Annual Outing

The Federal Reserve Society holds its First Annual Outing on June 7 at the Riverside Recreation Grounds. A few weeks later on July 7 the Society Field Day takes place with events including a pie eating contest, a candle race, nail driving contest, and a fat men's race.

1919-07-01 00:09:36

Check Collection

An average of 90,000 checks drawn on all points in New England outside of Boston are handled each day by the Bank.

1919-07-07 10:51:08

Federal Reserve Society

After throwing a banquet, an outing, and several theatrical productions, the Federal Reserve Society got around to holding its first regular business meeting, at Tremont Temple with about 250 members present. Following the meeting, "Miss Madeline Brine favored the audience with an aesthetic dance, the volume of applause testifying to the hit she made...we were next entertained by Mr. Pelletier, a most excellent magician...Mr. Bowker of the Merchants National Bank, led in singing popular songs. Unusual feeling seemed to be expressed in 'Oh, How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning'."

1919-08-01 00:09:36

Welfare Department Established

The Federal Reserve Society forms the Welfare Department, "to create a spirit of loyalty and cooperation among employees of the bank." Among the amenities offered were rest rooms for "sociable lunch hours," and "quiet in case of illness"--for female employees only.

1919-08-01 00:09:36

Last World War I Soldier Returns

The Bank welcomes back Horace Snow. Snow was the last of the Bank's WWI soldiers to safely return after active duty in France. He started at the Boston Fed in 1916 at the age 19.

1919-08-01 00:09:36

Monthly Review Published

The Bank begins publication of "The Monthly Review." The scholarly review will continue as the "New England Business Review," and later, "New England Economic Review," until 2004.

1919-08-01 14:29:16

Pearl, Franklin, and Oliver

The Bank acquires a large lot of land bordering Pearl, Franklin, and Oliver Streets to erect a building that will provide permanent quarters for all Bank departments.

1919-08-31 00:09:36

Surplus Food Sale

The Bank purchases surplus rations from the South Boston Army Base.

1919-09-28 00:09:36

Photostat Machine

"The Bank now has a photostat or copying camera on the top floor of 20 Kilby Street. This machine can produce an exact copy - the same size, or reduced or enlarged of any subject such as cancelled checks, signature cards, statements of condition, etc., in 5 or 10 minutes."

1919-12-26 00:09:36

Babe Ruth

The New York Yankees purchase Babe Ruth's contract from the Boston Red Sox for $125,000 and a $350,000 loan against the mortgage on Fenway Park. Owner Harry Frazee uses the money to finance the minor Broadway hit 'My Lady Friend." The Red Sox, winners of five World Series titles between 1903 and 1918, will not see another until 2004, finally ending the "Curse of the Bambino."

1919-12-26 00:09:36

Boston Police Strike

In retaliation for the suspension of nineteen union officers and the Police Commissioner’s refusal to allow them to join the AFL, the Boston Police go on strike. Looting, violence, and overall mayhem ensue. The State Guard is called in to protect the city. None of the 1,117 striking police officers return to the force. An entirely new Boston Police force is hired at increased wages and with better working conditions. The Police Commissioner has the full support of President Woodrow Wilson and Governor Calvin Coolidge (you can listen to his 'Law and Order' speech in this audio), who makes himself a national hero by quelling the strike.

1920-01-01 07:22:30

Employee Tally (1920)

The Federal Reserve System has a total of 12,541 employees.

1920-01-17 00:09:36


The 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution bans the manufacture, sale, and transportation of alcohol, with mixed success. It would become the first and only constitutional amendment to be repealed, when the 19th amendment did so in 1933.

1920-02-07 07:22:30

Horace Snow

A bachelor party was held for Horace Snow, recently returned WWI veteran.

1920-05-01 07:22:30

May Party

The May Party is held at the Copley Plaza. A minstrel act, monologue, soloist, and drama performance are part of the event. Members may bring guests to the party for $1.25 each.

1920-06-05 07:22:30

Federal Reserve Society 2nd Outing

The second annual outing of the Federal Reserve Society is a "Steamboat Excursion" from Rowe's Wharf to Nantasket. The event includes music from a live band, dancing, contests (including a water drinking contest), a shore dinner, and a grand parade to the Hotel Napoli. The total cost per member is $1.00.

1920-06-25 05:40:09

Notable Media (1920)

There is no Pulitzer Prize for Fiction awarded this year. One of the most popular songs is "When My Baby Smiles at Me."

1920-07-01 07:22:30

AIB Convention

The 18th Annual Convention of the American Institute of Banking (AIB) is held in Boston. There are 1,021 delegates attending from all parts of the country, 280 of which are women.

1920-12-01 07:22:30

Why Not Send Your Son to College?

The Savings Division of the Bank publishes this advertisement in the Society News: "Why not send your son to college? $1.00 a week in Thrift and Savings Stamps, with 4% compounded quarterly, grows as follows: 1 year - $53.05, 10 Years - $638.68, 15 Years - $1,066.99. Look Ahead and Start Saving Today."

1921-03-01 00:09:36

Girls Basketball Team

The Federal Reserve Girls Basketball Team wins its championship game against Exchange Trust by a defense-minded score of 21-16.

1921-06-04 05:40:09

Notable Media (1921)

The Pulitzer Prize for Fiction is awarded to Edith Wharton for "The Age of Innocence;" and one of the most popular songs is "Margie."

1921-08-01 07:22:30

Harmonica Band

Harmonica band rehearsals are held daily at noon on the roof at 84 State.

1921-11-26 05:40:09

Football Contests Are Starting to Generate Interest

Federal Reserve Bank of Boston staff attend a Princeton vs. Harvard football game.

1922-04-03 07:22:30

WWI Memorial Tablet

A tablet is presented to the Bank by members of the Federal Reserve Society: "In honor of those who took part in the World War 1917- 1918." The list of names includes Mr. Horace Snow.

1922-04-20 00:09:36

Pearl St. Building Completed

A public open house is held to celebrate the opening of the Bank's new quarters on Pearl Street.

Federal Reserve Bank of Boston

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