The Tiverton Bank was a short-lived institution that produced some beautiful pieces of currency. It was founded in May of 1855 with a capital of $50,000. Elihu Grant was president and J.O. Noxon, cashier.
It has been suggested that the Tiverton was created by New York swindlers for the sole purpose of putting a large amount of unsecured currency into circulation and that its somewhat remote location in Newport County was chosen intentionally to help perpetuate the scheme.
On September 28, 1857, most banks in Rhode Island suspended specie payment as financial problems across the country loomed. Several institutions subsequently failed and were enjoined by the bank commissioners including the Farmers Bank of Wickford, the Bank of South County, the Hopkinton Bank and the R..I Central Bank of East Greenwich. The Tiverton Bank passed into the hands of receivers and was liquidated by the end of 1857. It notes were deemed worthless in the press.
A report from 1901 notes: “Only part of the capital was ever paid in and much of the assets were taken to New York by the cashier; $80,000 was found there.”
For his part, J.O. Noxon continued to work at numerous banks. He is listed as the cashier of the First National Bank of Lockport, NY, in 1865, the Wall Street Exchange Bank in 1869, New York’s Ninth Ward Bank in 1871 and the Island City Bank in Manhattan in 1876.