Up until 1913, the Village of Chelmsford had no banking services. In that year, Mr. Alphonse Desjardins gave a conference on the cooperative movement behind the Caisses Desjardins. One hundred eighty-two residents of Chelmsford purchased $5 shares in this enterprise, resulting in the creation of the Caisse populaire Saint-Joseph, the first Caisse populaire to be established in Northern Ontario . Father Stéphane Côté was named president. The Caisse populaire ran until 1926 when it was forced to close. However, operations resumed in 1944 at the post office building on Main Street. Once again, Mgr. Stéphane Côté was responsible for its founding and was named president. The Caisse populaire was reopened under the name of the Caisse populaire de Chelmsford or Caisse populaire Vermillion.
As for the Caisse populaire d'Azilda, it was founded in 1954 by Elzéar Beausoleil and Donat Leduc. Stanislas Gauthier filled the role of president. Initially located in the basement of Église Sainte-Agnès, it moved a few months later to Mr. Beausoleil's residence.
Material compiled from Chelmsford 1883-1983 and Un passeport vers la liberté : les caisses populaires de l'Ontario de 1912 à 1992.