Chase is one of the largest and oldest banks continuously operating in the borough ofQueens.
Originally known as the Bank of Manhattan — established in 1799 by Aaron Burr — and now the banking arm of JP Morgan Chase Co., it boasted dozens of branches at the height of the Depression, when many other banks were folding up and closing.
One branch, at old No. 804 Fresh Pond Road in Ridgewood, served the area’s large German-American community. Just a short distance up the block at 66-73 Fresh Pond were Henry Schloh Real Estate and the Rego Construction and Henry Otterstedt Construction companies. The humble looking bank shown here loaned the money to German-Americans Schloh and Otterstedt for what later became the start of a new community called Rego Park.
The bank was re-numbered 66-58 soon after, and later expanded to a larger corner office at 66-60 — today home to a branch of Maspeth Federal Savings.
In 1955 The Bank Of Manhattan merged with Chase National Bank, thus becoming Chase Manhattan Bank. Then in 1996 Chemical Bank purchased Chase Manhattan. Chemical decided to retain the Chase Manhattan name as it was better known. Four years later, the investment house JP Morgan bought the firm, creating today’s JPMorgan Chase — the largest bank in the United States as measured by assets since last October.
Since 2004, the financial giant has been headed by Jamie Dimon, a native of Jackson Heights whose grandfather came to the United States from Greece.