Our History: Early Years of Growth
Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union had solid growth through the early 1920s, with assets increasing from $6,063 in 1912 to $197,000 in 1922, an increase of 3200%. Membership rose during the same period to 1,310. The Credit Union voted to accept loan and mortgage applications in May 1912. Personal loans were capped at $100 with an interest rate of 6.00%; real estate loans at $2,000 with an interest rate of 5.00%. The Credit Union recorded its first mortgage on February 21, 1913.
During its first three years of operation, 1913-1915, the Credit Union made 17 mortgages; during the next 10 years, a total of 235 mortgages were made. Many of these were in the fast-developing Pawtucketville neighborhood. Of the first 17 mortgages, 12 were in the Rosemount Terrace section of Pawtucketville, and nine of these were for multiple lots. This development had begun “with the opening of the Moody Street bridge in September 1896” when many in Little Canada “dreamed of owning their own home…in Pawtucketville or of living in the country away from the noise and smoke of the mills.” Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union provided the financial means that helped its members realize their dreams.
By 1915, the credit union had grown to the point that it hired its first part-time employee, M. Edmour Foisy, as an accountant. The following year he was named treasurer. Foisy was a Lowell High School graduate and attended business school in Boston. He was also very active in charitable and fraternal organizations including the CMAC, Mt. Pleasant Golf Club, the Franco-American Orphanage and the American Legion.
By 1918 the credit union had amassed assets of over $100,000 and it was time to move from its church quarters. Directors did not go far, as they established offices in a nearby tenement block at the corner of Cabot and Merrimack Street. To secure its growing assets, the Credit Union purchased its first vault.