In 1865, the U.S. Congress chartered the Freedmen's Savings and Trust Company, known as the Freedmen's Bank, to aid freed persons in their transition from enslavement to freedom. In 1870, Samuel M. Arnell and J.P. Baird established the Columbia, Tennessee branch in a room over the McGaw Livery Stable at Sixth and North Main Streets. This branch was one of four branches and the last one established in Tennessee. After several successful years, the freedmen deposited more than $57 million. In 1874, the Freedmen's Bank closed all of its branches due to mismanagement and the financial panic of 1873.