How the story of “The Shoe Wizard” relates to our new branch


In 1905, after a broken engagement, Mahlon Haines (1875-1962) left his Ohio home on his bicycle and set out to move to Washington, D.C. He was traveling through York when his bike broke down. He took a liking to the town, so he stayed.


Mahlon sold the engagement ring and purchased ten pairs of new shoes, which he re-sold for a profit at the local farmers market. After some ups and downs, his persistence, hard work, and creative marketing paid off. Haines’ shoe business grew and grew. His most famous promotion can still be seen along Route 30 in Hellam, the Haines Shoe House, modeled after a work boot.


By 1931, Mr. Haines owned and operated 50 shoes stores across PA and MD, with six locations in York. One of his stores was on the first floor of the Haines Hotel, which Haines had constructed in 1925. This building is home to York Traditions Bank’s newest location – coincidentally, our sixth branch.

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Besides building a successful business, Mr. Haines was equally respected for building the community he loved. He was a generous man and regularly gave back to his customers, employees and neighbors.

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Founded on a set of Core Values, the goals of York Traditions Bank parallel those of Mahlon Haines. Because We Live Here Too, we work hard every day to provide needed products with exquisite customer service; we help local business grow; we share our time, talents and treasures with our community; and we create a great workplace for our Associates. We are very proud to expand our footprint in downtown York within the walls of Haines’ beautiful building.

Lifepath Ministries logo In celebration of the opening of our new Downtown York office, we are collecting shoes for LifePath Ministries, If you so desire, bring a new or gently worn pair of shoes to donate. Men’s work boots are especially needed, but any size and style is appreciated.