Perhaps no bank is more proud of their heritage than Wells Fargo. Their history is intertwined with that of the Old West. The company was founded in 1852 as a bank and express delivery service to serve Gold Rush pioneers. Their first office was in San Francisco where their headquarters remains to this day. Miners would take their gold nuggets and dust to Wells Fargo to be weighed and converted to legal tender.

Early on, Wells Fargo’s express service was considered more reliable than that of the U.S. Postal Service. Their stagecoaches would carry passengers as well as valuable packages and were irresistible targets for bandits. You can learn more about Wells Fargo’s history at one of their ten museums. The Anchorage, Alaska location looks the most interesting, if you just happen to be up that way.

For fun, take a look at this video of a very, very young Ron Howard (actor, director, producer) singing about the Wells Fargo Wagon in the movie, The Music Man.

Today Wells Fargo has over 12,000 ATMs and 6,200 branches (some of which are located inside grocery stores) across the country. Their largest presence is in California, Texas, and Florida.

They offer all of the services that you would expect from a large financial institution, including credit card sevices. There are five choices for personal credit cards – rewards, cash back, student, secured, and there is an additional rewards card for homeowners who have their mortgage with Wells Fargo.

The rewards card and cash back card all have big bonuses on gas, groceries, and drugstore items for the first six months. However, six months goes by quickly, so you probably shouldn’t let that sway you unless you know that you are planning to make dinner for all of your trucker friends and fill their gas tanks for the next leg of their route, with a stop off at the drugstore for heartburn medicine.

Here are the details for the rewards card and the cash back card.

They also have a card just for college students where you earn 1% cash back.
For people with poor or no credit, there is the secured card. For this you’ll need to open a Wells Fargo Collateral Account and put at least $300 in it. The money in the account will determine your credit limit. If you make your credit card payments on time, you may be eligible to convert the card to an unsecured one, at which point you will get your collateral back.

You can apply online for any of these credit cards at www.wellsfargo.com but only if you have an existing Wells Fargo account. Otherwise, you have to visit a branch.

However, here you can Compare Credit Cards & Apply Online from many different issuers.

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