Roger L. Fitzsimonds, the chairman of Firstar Corp., remembers when fee income didn't count for much in commercial banking.

In 1964, when Capt. Fitzsimonds left the Army to join the management training program at First Wisconsin National Bank, Lyndon Johnson was President, "I Want To Hold Your Hand" was a hit song, and banking's most important benchmark was the spread between borrowing and lending.

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