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A milestone at Metropolitan.

A Milestone At Metropolitan

The largest privately held land empire in North Little Rock -- Justin Matthews' legacy -- reached another milestone last month: Metropolitan Trust Co. no longer has a Matthews heir at its head.

In April, Hal Matthews, the last member of the Matthews family to work for the firm left to pursue other interests.

Started by Justin Matthews in 1925 and passed down to two succeeding generations of heirs, the real estate development firm is now headed by Andy Collins, 36, a tax attorney from San Francisco. Six years ago Collins moved to Little Rock with his wife (one of the owners of Metropolitan Trust).

The exodus of this generation of Matthews began in 1982 when Somers Matthews, a great grandson of the founder, joined Stephens Inc. Justin Matthews III retired in 1986 and another son, David, left in 1987.

What is the value of Metropolitan's holdings?

Collins won't say, but here's a clue: John Matthews withdrew his one-fourth share of Metropolitan Trust in 1955 to form The Crestwood Co.

Last fall, a highly-leverage Crestwood Co. defaulted on $25 million in loans and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Before its bankruptcy troubles, Crestwood claimed that its 1986 net worth was $75 million.
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Title Annotation:Hal Matthews resigns from Metropolitan Trust Co.
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:May 6, 1991
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