Few insurance companies will insure risks in the new frontier, so neighbors banded together to mutually insure each other's property against fire and windstorms. Their promises help form the foundation for what is now Columbia Insurance Group.
The Boone County Home Mutual Insurance Company is created in Columbia, Missouri in 1874. The Board of Directors is made up of John Samuel, J.S. Dorsey, William Switzler, John Harris, William Woods, John Hubbell, George Trimble, T.B. Gentry and R.L. Todd. Home Mutual Insurance Company takes over the assets and liabilities of Boone County Home Mutual Insurance Company in 1938.
H.F. Stapel forms and is secretary of Missouri Farmers Mutual Tornado, Cyclone and Windstorm Insurance Company headquartered in Rock Port, Missouri. The name was changed in 1934 to Farmers Mutual Windstorm Insurance Company, and in 1969 the name was changed to Columbia Mutual Insurance Company.
Historical Note: For years the leader of a mutual company was given the title of secretary, and was the day-to-day operations manager of the company. The president's duty was merely to preside over the annual board meetings.
H.F. Stapel forms the Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Company of Missouri to fill a need for crop insurance.
H.F. Stapel (founder) dies, and his son, John, is named the company's second secretary at the age of 25. The company has $12.4 million of insurance in force.
Paul Rutledge, named secretary, is hired to run Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Company, and his father, W.A. Rutledge, is placed on the Board.
Historical Note: W.A. Rutledge founded The Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Association of Iowa and was instrumental in forming the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies with H.F. Stapel before his death.
Farmers Mutual Windstorm Insurance Company and Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Company of Missouri move from Rock Port to Columbia, Missouri in 1930, providing a more strategic location for the company's continued growth and expansion. The companies have six employees total. Five years later, the company moves from their initial Ninth Street location to Hitt Street, shown above.
Due to the war, tire and gas rationing hamper the company's ability to adjust losses. The company complies with the government's wage and salary freezes. They also comply with the United States Department of War when asked to become a fiduciary agent of the War Damages Corporation for writing insurance of war damage risk.
Enlistments of company personnel into the military require additional hours to be added to employee work schedules.
The company moves to a new, larger headquarters on the Business Loop 70 in Columbia, Missouri.
John Stapel retires, and Frank Blakemore is named secretary of Farmers Mutual Windstorm Insurance Company. Darrell Seltsam is named secretary of Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Company.
Farmers Mutual Windstorm Insurance Company had $314,000,000 of insurance in force and a surplus of $1,257,000.
The company celebrates 75 years in business with a "Diamond Jubilee", and begins offering premium gifts to agents who write two new applications or combined policies of $4,000 or more.
John Stapel comes out of retirement to be named secretary of Farmers Mutual Windstorm Insurance Company after Frank Blakemore suddenly dies. Les Keuck is hired as the company's manager.
Missouri Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Company Incorporated, which began business in 1940, changes its name to Midland Mutual Insurance Company.
Columbia Mutual Insurance Company posts $1 million in surplus.
Darrell Seltsam replaces Les Keuck as secretary and John Stapel is elected president of Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Company of Missouri.
Direct written premium rises to $1.5 million with a surplus of $2.1 million. Insurance in force is more than $611 million.
Historical Note: This year, the term "secretary" was discontinued in favor of the term "president," and the terms "president" and "chief executive officer" became standard parlance for the company's leaders. The board leader was designated as "Chairman of the Board."
Our Columbia companies move to a new headquarters at 2102 White Gate Drive in Columbia, Missouri to accommodate growth.
This building was formerly a shopping mall, including about 67,000-square-feet and two levels of space. The company occupied a small portion, and leased the remaining space to additional tenants.
The 107-year-old Home Mutual Insurance Company is merged into Columbia Mutual Insurance Company. Midland Mutual Insurance Company also becomes part of Columbia Mutual Insurance Company. Citizens Mutual Insurance Company joins Columbia Insurance Group next year.
Company's policyholder surplus stands at $5 million, and the company begins to write auto insurance.
Arlo McNary becomes the company's sixth president of Columbia Insurance Group.
The company begins writing in Arkansas as well as writing commercial lines.
Acquired National American Insurance Company of Nebraska and entered the Nebraska market.
The company changed the name to Columbia National Insurance Company and established our Omaha Branch office this year.
This year marks the 100th year of operation. A new company name, Columbia Insurance Group, and logo are created in honor of this momentous date.
The symbol within our logo is unique among insurance companies. It is a graphic presentation of a person holding the American flag, which represents Everyman and Everywoman. Our symbol represents "our company heritage - an organization born 100 years ago in the heartland of our nation; dedicated to protecting its citizens as they go about realizing the American dream."
~ Arlo McNary, president
Columbia Mutual Insurance Company and Midland Farmers Mutual Insurance Company merge into Columbia Mutual Casualty Insurance Company. The surviving carrier of these and other mergers is named Columbia Mutual Insurance Company, and it is licensed to write policies in 22 states.
The company begins an agent cooperative advertising program.
The company issues its first Property/Casualty policy in Georgia and Iowa.
Company acquires Patrons and Swedish American Mutual Insurance Companies. Great Plains Mutual Insurance Company becomes affiliated with Columbia Mutual Insurance Company through an operating contract.
A Kansas branch office is established in Olathe, Kansas; however, it is moved to Salina - its current location - next year.
Bob Wagner is named the seventh president and CEO of Columbia Insurance Group.
Columbia Insurance Group has 150,000 policyholders, more than 160 local employees and a total of 290 employees in 10 states.
The company introduces the Pinnacle Agency Program, offering additional benefits to reward those "elite agencies that demonstrate a commitment of sustained profitable growth with our companies."
Policyholder surplus reaches $145.5 million. Direct written premium stands at $204.6 million and commercial direct written premium sets a new record at $129 million.
The company is named to Ward Group's Top 50 Property/Casualty Insurance Companies in the United States.
The company is named "Company of the Year" by the Independent Insurance Agents of Arkansas.
The Celent company names Columbia Insurance Group as a "Model Carrier" for the company's contractors' businessowners rating and policy issuance automation system. Celent is a research and consulting firm focused on the application of information technology.
The company is ranked in the Top 50 of all Property/Casualty insurance companies and in the Top 30 of commercial lines writers by National Underwriters.
The company is named a "Super Regional" company by Demotech, Inc., an actuarial consulting and financial analysis firm.
The company acquires Association Casualty Insurance Company and Georgia Casualty & Surety Company. Additionally, the company begins selling Property/Casualty policies in Alabama, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas.
Policyholder surplus reaches $167 million. Direct written premium stands at $248 million. Commercial direct written premium stands at $165 million.
The company is licensed for personal and commercial lines Property/Casualty products in 30 states and writes business in 19 states.
The company receives the Missouri Association of Insurance Agents "Top Partner of the Year" honor, as well as the "Company of the Year" award from the Independent Insurance Agents of Nebraska.
Company is named one of the Top Five Best Places to work in mid-Missouri by Inside Columbia magazine.
Named "Company of the Year" by the Arkansas PIA, and also designated Regional Insurance Company of the Year by Arkansas IIAA.
Bob Wagner retires as CEO after 41 years with the company. Gary Thompson becomes the company's eighth President/CEO.
Company is designated as a "Super Regional" Company by Demotech, Inc. as it has been since 2006.
Columbia Insurance Group proudly moves forward, building upon the strong foundation of our history. The five entities that comprise our family of companies are Association Casualty Insurance Company, Citizens Mutual Insurance Company, Columbia Mutual Insurance Company, Columbia National Insurance Company, and Georgia Casualty & Surety Company.