The Vandalia Area Historical Society recently received a generous donation from Ron and Karen Morris of Vandalia –two framed oil painting portraits of Ron’s uncle and grandfather; Rual and Roz Morris. These two stunning portraits once hung in the Vandalia State Bank located at 200 South Main. Ronald Roz Morris is the son of Raymond and Murryl Morris. Rual and Roz were former Presidents of the Vandalia State Bank from 1945 to 1984.
The Rual Morris Foundation has been a significant supporter of the Vandalia Area Historical Society. Rual’s foundation extended the largest private donation for the recent museum expansion and renovation. In addition, annual donations have been given to the Society for several years.
Roz Gilbert Morris
In the early years of his career, Roz Gilbert Morris interspersed banking with farming and working with Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad. During the mid-1940s, he held the position of president and board chairman of the Vandalia State Bank. He was active in bankers’ groups and agricultural interests, both in Missouri and Texas. Mr. Morris’ tenure as head of the bank was highly successful. He never had to foreclose or sue on any loan. Additionally, he had a keen sense of civic duty. Mr. Morris was a self-educated man.
His formal education ended with eighth grade.
Rual Roz Morris
Rual attended public schools in St. Louis, graduating in 1938 from Maplewood High School as valedictorian of his class.
Upon completion of his military service, he accepted a position with United Bank and Trust Company, St. Louis, Missouri, where his father held the position of executive vice president. It was in April 1946, that Rual joined the Vandalia State Bank, Vandalia, Missouri, as bookkeeper. He became a director of the bank in 1950 and its president in 1961.
Mr. Morris was a member of the Missouri Bankers Association,
the American Bankers Association and the Independent Bankers Association. He served as a director, secretary and treasurer of the Vandalia Recreation Corporation. He is affiliated with the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine and the higher bodies of Masonry. He is a communicant member of the Presbyterian Church.