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Public Debt Celebrates 50 Years Presence in Parkersburg, WV

The Bureau of the Public Debt first identified Parkersburg, WV, as its emergency relocation site in the early 1950s, during the Cold War era. By 1957, Public Debt started to set up some of its savings bond operations there as well. This included installing one of the earliest commercially available mainframe computers. It would be used to introduce electronic processing to the enormous and growing volumes of U.S. Savings Bond records. Public Debt was among the first five organizations – and the only Federal agency - to lease a DATAmatic Model 1000 mainframe computer – affectionately known as the "Great Brain."

Besides seeking an emergency relocation site, Public Debt also recognized the availability of a talented, competitive workforce in Parkersburg. In the decades that followed, Parkersburg continued to be Public Debt’s obvious choice for long-term success as decisions were made about where to consolidate work to gain efficiencies or provide outstanding customer service.

Throughout the years, Public Debt’s changing needs created a demand for new occupations in Parkersburg. The current workforce includes specially trained customer service representatives, excellent accountants, technology experts, meticulous financing personnel, and talented staff members who support all our administrative operations. The workforce is so strong that we competitively offer administrative and technology services to other Federal agencies.

Commissioner Van Zeck noted, "Public Debt's connection with Parkersburg has been instrumental in our success over the years and tremendously productive for our organization, our customers, and the American taxpayer. The excellent workforce and community of the greater Parkersburg area will continue to be critical as we work to meet the mission accomplishment and customer service challenges of the future. We look forward to the next 50 years."