Banking since 1903
The story of Century Bank began in the rustic small town of Lucedale, Miss., on a quiet Thursday morning in June 1903 when Gregory M. Luce promptly opened the doors to the Bank of Lucedale at 9 a.m. Housed in the first floor of a two-story wooden building at the corner of Main and Mill Streets, the Bank of Lucedale opened in a rough economic time for the South in the post-Civil War era. Yet, the people of Lucedale entrusted G.M. Luce with their finances and the bank's success soared.
A native from Grand Rapids, Michigan, Luce was a remarkable entrepreneur as a land owner, mill operator and founder of K-C Lumber Company. He came to the area in 1889 with his wife (Sarah), son (Jex) and $20,000 in family money to invest. He was so well received by his neighbors that when the town was incorporated in June 1901, the town was named Lucedale "after the only man who had come to the area not only with capital but with commitment and stayed to help his neighbors gain prosperity."
As with G.M. Luce's other endeavors, business boomed for the Bank of Lucedale. In fact, after only two years in business, the bank moved into a new two-story brick building on Main Street. For its 25th anniversary in 1928, the institution moved to 100 Main Street, where it remained until 1988 when the Main Office moved to its current location, 4282 Main Street.
G.M. Luce served as the bank's President and Chairman of the Board until his death in 1935. Jex H. Luce, who made the trip from Grand Rapids with his parents, succeeded his father and held the office of President until his death in 1958. Douglas T. Luce, Sr. succeeded and was elected Chairman of the Board, a position he held until his death in 1997. Douglas T. Luce, Jr. currently serves as the Chairman of the Board.