Summit County Historical Society

Summit County Historical Society Learn about local history, events and programs by following the Summit County Historical Society of Akron, OH.

Operating as usual

05/13/2021

Unveiling of the Rubber Worker Statue at the Mill and Main Roundabout - May 13, 2021

It sits on bases in the shape of Akron and also Summit County.

Congratulations to Miriam Ray, Mac Love, Mayor Horrigan, Executive Shapiro, Artist Alan Cottrill and Foundry Manager Jos...
05/13/2021

Congratulations to Miriam Ray, Mac Love, Mayor Horrigan, Executive Shapiro, Artist Alan Cottrill and Foundry Manager Josh Becker!

You can now see the Rubber Worker Statue at the roundabout on Mill and Main!

To the east of the roundabout by the Akron-Summit County Public Library is a kiosk with rubber company videos from The University of Akron Archival Services along with videos of interviews with individuals who worked or had family members who worked in the rubber industry.

Hundreds of bricks line the sidewalk purchased from around the country and you can take it all in while sitting on a stone bench carved with a personal statement from Akron's own, Rita Dove.

" AKRON - A UNIQUE AMERICAN CITY BUILT WITH VISION AND GRIT AND LOVE, A MONUMENT TO THE RESILIENCE OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT AND ITS CAPACITY TO CREATE TO EXPLORE, AND TO PERSEVERE."

Thank you to Society volunteer Bruce G. for photographing Society collection pieces. These Robinson Clay items are actua...
05/13/2021

Thank you to Society volunteer Bruce G. for photographing Society collection pieces.

These Robinson Clay items are actually found in the company's 1903 catalog. We'll feature a third set tomorrow. Cheers!

Thank you to Society volunteer Bruce G. for photographing Society collection pieces.

These Robinson Clay items are actually found in the company's 1903 catalog. We'll feature a third set tomorrow. Cheers!

Thank you to Society volunteer Bruce G. for photographing Society collection pieces. These Robinson Clay items are actua...
05/11/2021

Thank you to Society volunteer Bruce G. for photographing Society collection pieces.

These Robinson Clay items are actually found in the company's 1903 catalog. We'll feature a few today, tomorrow and Thursday. Enjoy!

Thank you to Society volunteer Bruce G. for photographing Society collection pieces.

These Robinson Clay items are actually found in the company's 1903 catalog. We'll feature a few today, tomorrow and Thursday. Enjoy!

While the Wright Brothers may have invented their airplane without their sister Katharine, their road to success might h...
05/11/2021

While the Wright Brothers may have invented their airplane without their sister Katharine, their road to success might have been more difficult without her.

Read "The Wright Sister" by Patty Dann for our June 21 SCHS book club You will get to know the sister who provided both support and guidance to her talented brothers.

We will meet on Monday, June 21 at 6:30 p.m. (virtual and live alternatives). Go to summithistory.org and check out our events calendar to enroll or contact us at (330) 535-1120.

Sara Fisher of the International Women's Air & Space Museum will also be involved with us online to discuss their display on Katharine Wright. A mini display will also be at the Society for a limited time before and after the program.

The book (available in several fomats) may be ordered through the Summit County Library. It is also available on Amazon.

Don’t have time to read the book? Join us anyway. We will have a lively discussion about this remarkable lady!

Please find here more images from Jack and Mary Schifano's trip to Harpers Ferry in 2016.
05/10/2021

Please find here more images from Jack and Mary Schifano's trip to Harpers Ferry in 2016.

On this day in 1800, John Brown was born to Owen and Ruth (Mills) Brown in Torrington, Connecticut. By the age of five, ...
05/10/2021

On this day in 1800, John Brown was born to Owen and Ruth (Mills) Brown in Torrington, Connecticut. By the age of five, young John and his family were moved to Hudson, OH, as father Owen wanted his children to be raised near likeminded individuals - abolitionists.

The Brown family for decades was involved in the Underground Railroad in what we now call Summit County in Hudson, Richfield and Akron.

John Brown is most known for his raid on Harpers Ferry in 1859, but here in NE OH, he was recognized as a passionate, honest man, a hard worker who was a bad businessman, and the father of 20 children.

Society volunteers Jack and Mary Schifano visited Harpers Ferry in 2016. Jack has shared a few images from that trip along with notes on the visit below. Thank you!

Harpers Ferry

The pictures seen here were taken September of 2016. This was off season, and some of the shops and museums were closed for the season. You had to take a charter bus to get there. I would recommend going in season when everything is open.

The history of the town was the main focus. The guides were pro slavery pro confederacy. They talked more on the armory than of Mr. Brown. He was only a speck to the town’s history. I feel he was an important speck. They talked about how the US government left the armory abandoned. This led the Confederacy to come in and move all the equipment further South when the Civil War started.

This surprised me; I would have thought they would have damaged the equipment making it unusable or move it up North.

In 1859, Brown’s plan was to arm the slaves with pikes and take the weapons for raids further south following the mountains in his effort to end slavery in the United States. What he didn’t expect was that the townspeople would fight. It was the citizens of the town that assisted in stopping Brown and his men. A squad of soldiers from the Marine Garrison in Washington, D.C., did come to help the citizens.

The guide who was describing this said the officers were in dress uniforms and their swords were ceremonial with no edge.

John Brown and his men were cornered in the Fire House which has been moved from its original location). The citizens and the squad tried to break down the doors of the fire house with two slag hammers which did not work. Finally, someone climbed on the roof and broke a window to get to the Brown group. They were arrested. The rest is history.

One point of interest is the heads of the slag hammers used to try and bust open the Fire house doors are at the Marine Museum in Triangle, Virginia near the Quantico Base.

Happy Mother's Day!On Mutton Hill, between two mothers - Mary Ann Day Brown and Grace Tod Perkins - 24 children were bor...
05/09/2021

Happy Mother's Day!

On Mutton Hill, between two mothers - Mary Ann Day Brown and Grace Tod Perkins - 24 children were born and five more children were raised by Mary Ann Brown since their mother, Dianthe Lusk, had died in 1832. John Brown and his first wife Dianthe had seven children altogether and two died in their infancy.

Mary and John Brown had 13 children; three born in Akron.

Grace Tod and Simon Perkins had 11 children; ten lived to adulthood.

05/09/2021
Happy Birthday, Owen!

Happy 2nd Birthday to Owen Brown Steiner!

Surprisingly, little Owen shares a birthday with John Brown (May 9, 1800) to whose father he is named in honor.

Enjoy this video (Happy Dog Mother’s Day, Edie Steiner) and we’ll be posting more today for John Brown and Morher’s Day.

The sun is supposed to make an appearance this afternoon. Take an opportunity to enjoy it by walking around the John Bro...
05/07/2021

The sun is supposed to make an appearance this afternoon. Take an opportunity to enjoy it by walking around the John Brown House property at 4:30 TODAY for Jane's Walk.

Society volunteer Bill Stewart will help lead the walk sharing some of the images captured during this six year process to make the structure and properties "Accessible to All."

Stone mason John Burnell will be on site to explain his work restoring the dry stone wall.

There are a variety of Jane's Walk programs going on throughout the area including Downtown Akron Partnership, OECA and others.

From the Jane's Walk website: https://janeswalk.org/

Jane’s Walk is an annual festival of free, community-led walking conversations inspired by Jane Jacobs.

We walk our cities to honor and activate the ideas of Jane Jacobs. Jane’s Walk is a community-based approach to city building that uses volunteer-led walking tours to make space for people to observe, reflect, share, question and re-imagine the places in which they live, work and play.

On the first weekend of May every year, Jane’s Walk festivals take place in hundreds of cities around the world. Jane’s Walks encourage people to share stories about their neighborhoods, discover unseen aspects of their communities, and use walking as a way to connect with their neighbors.

Today, we remember the four lives lost and those changed forever.Kent State University has announced a new scholarship e...
05/04/2021

Today, we remember the four lives lost and those changed forever.

Kent State University has announced a new scholarship established by Michael Solomon, a 1974 Kent State graduate, for incoming freshmen or transfer students in recognition of Alan Canfora, one of the nine KSU students wounded on May 4, 1970, when Ohio National Guard members opened fire on KSU student demonstrators on campus.

THE ALAN CANFORA ACTIVISM SCHOLARSHIP
http://bit.ly/CanforaKSUScholarship

RIP:
Allison Beth Krause, 19
Jeffrey Glenn Miller, 20
Sandra Lee Scheuer, 20
William Knox Schroeder, 19

Wounded:
Alan Canfora, BA ’72, MLS ’80
John Cleary, BArch ’74
Thomas Grace, BA ’72
Dean Kahler, BS ’77
Joseph Lewis
Donald Scott Mackenzie, BBA ’71
James Russell, BFA ’70
Robert Stamps, BA ’72, MA ’76, MA ’99
Douglas Wrentmore

Today, we remember the four lives lost and those changed forever.

Kent State University has announced a new scholarship established by Michael Solomon, a 1974 Kent State graduate, for incoming freshmen or transfer students in recognition of Alan Canfora, one of the nine KSU students wounded on May 4, 1970, when Ohio National Guard members opened fire on KSU student demonstrators on campus.

THE ALAN CANFORA ACTIVISM SCHOLARSHIP
http://bit.ly/CanforaKSUScholarship

RIP:
Allison Beth Krause, 19
Jeffrey Glenn Miller, 20
Sandra Lee Scheuer, 20
William Knox Schroeder, 19

Wounded:
Alan Canfora, BA ’72, MLS ’80
John Cleary, BArch ’74
Thomas Grace, BA ’72
Dean Kahler, BS ’77
Joseph Lewis
Donald Scott Mackenzie, BBA ’71
James Russell, BFA ’70
Robert Stamps, BA ’72, MA ’76, MA ’99
Douglas Wrentmore

Please remember to vote YES on Issue 10 on May 4th for the Akron-Summit County Public Library.It is not a new tax.
05/04/2021

Please remember to vote YES on Issue 10 on May 4th for the Akron-Summit County Public Library.

It is not a new tax.

"Heroines of the Pandemic" is the theme for this year's Women's History Project Woman of the Year Awards with presenting...
04/29/2021

"Heroines of the Pandemic" is the theme for this year's Women's History Project Woman of the Year Awards with presenting Sponsor Summa Health held on April 26, 2021.

The video and booklet links are below for download.

Dr. Kitty Endres was the director of the video virtual event for the Summit County Historical Society. The welcome was given by Executive Ilene Shapiro. Dr. Theresa S. Beyerle wrote and narrated the video and Jamie Newhall was the editor.

Congratulations to our heroine recipients:

Shanu Agarwal, MD, Summa Health - Special Pandemic Health

Lisa Aurilio, MSN, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FACHE, Akron Children's Hospital - Special Pandemic Health

Olive Beason (Husk) - Posthumous

Nealie D'Abate, DHSc, MHSA, C-TAGME, Western Reserve Hospital - Special Pandemic Health

Greater Akron Hindu Sewa Samittee - Perseverance
Tika Luitel, Purni Magar, Sita Poudel, Sumi Baraily, Maya Bhandari, Hemanta Tirwa, Lachi Dahal, Durga Katel, Phul M. Khati and Anulata Subba. Award speech presented by Mahananda Luitel.

Josy Jones, Chameleon Village - Creativity

Rev. Nanette Pitt - Faith

Christy Rohm, DNP, RN NE-BC, Cleveland Clinic Akron General - Special Pandemic Health

Donna Skoda, MS, RD, LD, Summit Public Health - Integrity

The awards were designed and made by Ellie Payne and Dr. Mary E. Myers, students of Professor Sherry Simms in the University of Akron Metalsmithing and Jewelry program.

Thank you to sponsors Dr. Kitty Endres, Akron Children's Hospital, Executive Ilene Shapiro's Department of Job and Family Services, Sophie Albrecht as a Local History Patron and Rosemary Reymann as a Donna Skoda recipient sponsor.

We are grateful to booklet sponsors Western Reserve Hospital, Cleveland Clinic Akron General and Summit County Historical Society.

The event had to be rescheduled from its original March 25th date. The new date is in recognition of Sybil Ludington who on April 26, 1777, rode over 20 miles at night to alert American colonists of a British invasion.
http://bit.ly/21Heroines - event video

http://bit.ly/HeroinesBooklet - booklet

Post #2 - Love was in the air in late July or early August as there are four historic birthdays to share today. EJ Thoma...
04/28/2021

Post #2 - Love was in the air in late July or early August as there are four historic birthdays to share today. EJ Thomas and Gen. Alvin Voris are in this post and Fred Pockrandt and Henry Robinson are in a previous post.

Thank you to Society volunteer Al McCaulley for researching and writing this post.

Edwin Joel Thomas was born April 27, 1899 in Akron. He was a son of Richard and Nettie (Putt) Thomas. After graduating from Central High School he got a job at Goodyear. There was a break in 1918 when Edwin did a short stint in the Army. Starting at Goodyear as a stenographer on a part-time basis, while still in school, Edwin, then only 17, took a full time job following his graduation in 1916. At the end of two years, an opening occurred in the office of P. W. Litchfield, then vice-president and factory manager, and Edwin became one of his secretaries. In addition, he took the factory training course by working at the plant at night, along with studies in Goodyear Industrial University.

This initiative paid off in 1924 with an opportunity to apply what he had learned about factory management as he was made assistant to Mr. Litchfield. In 1926, Edwin was appointed director of personnel. Two years later, he was sent to California as general superintendent.

Mr. Thomas returned to Akron in 1930, served as assistant to the factory manager and then moved into general superintendent of Akron operations in 1932. He worked in that position until 1935 at which time he was sent to Great Britain to broaden his sales and managerial abilities.

He returned to Akron then again in 1936. Mr. Litchfield, who was serving both as president and chairman of the board, wished to be relieved of some of the growing volume of administrative detail of the world-wide organization in 1940. Litchfield continued as chairman and Edwin was elected president, the eighth in Goodyear’s history.

E. J. Thomas was heavily involved in the Boy Scout program in the Akron area and served in various capacities in many organizations. Many in the community today know his name from the performance hall named in his honor at The University of Akron. Mr. Thomas had been a long-time board member of the university and he was a leader in the community.

E. J. Thomas married to Mildred Vaughn on June 23, 1923. At the time of their marriage, Mr. Thomas’ address was 937 Johnston Street, Akron. They had two children, Richard and Jean. Mr. Thomas died in December of 1986. Mrs. Thomas died in 1997 at the age of 96. They are both buried at Rose Hill Cemetery.

General Alvin Coe Voris was born April 27, 1827 in Stark County. He was a son of Peter and Julia (Coe) Voris. In 1834, the family moved to Bath Township where Alvin received his grade school education. He also attended Twinsburg Institute and Oberlin College.

From 1850 to 1852, Alvin served as deputy clerk and acting probate judge. He was admitted to the bar in 1853 and was a partner of Gen. L. V. Bierce of Tallmadge until 1859. In September 1861 he entered the army as a lieutenant colonel of the 67th Regiment, O. V. I., and became its commanding officer in March 1862.Voris was breveted brigadier general in 1864, and a few months later major general for distinguished service in the field.

After the war, General Voris resumed the practice of law. In 1873, he was elected to the Constitutional Assembly and in 1890 was elected judge of the court of common pleas for Summit, Medina and Lorain counties, his term expiring in 1896.

He married Lydia Allyn on June 20, 1853. Mrs. Voris died March 16, 1876, leaving three children – Edwin, Lucy and Bessie. Gen. Voris then married Lizzie Keller in 1882.

Brevet Major General Alvin Voris died July 28, 1904. Voris was inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame on November 6, 2003. He is buried at Glendale Cemetery.

Love was in the air in late July or early August as there are four historic birthdays to share today. Fred Pockrandt and...
04/28/2021

Love was in the air in late July or early August as there are four historic birthdays to share today. Fred Pockrandt and Henry Robinson will be in this post and EJ Thomas and Gen. Alvin Voris will be in the next post.
Thank you to Society volunteer Al McCaulley for researching and writing this post.

Frederick Carl Pockrandt was born April 27, 1891 in Akron. He was a son of Helmut and Johanna (Evers) Pockrandt. He was a younger brother of Carl who was very active in Akron affairs and served as president of the SUMMIT COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY for decades. Interestingly, the brothers pronounced their last names different. One said it was pock-rant; the other said poke-rant.

Fred attended Zion Lutheran Parochial School and Bryan School and graduated from Akron High School in January, 1910. While attending school and during vacations, he worked at various times for the B. F. Goodrich Company, Quaker Oats Company, Alderfer’s Bakery and Restaurant, and Kable’s Lunch Room.

On April 8, 1908, Fred started working for the Fred W. Albrecht Grocery Company, operators of the Acme Stores, as a part time clerk and delivery boy. Later, he became a member of the company’s inventory crew and then, successively, assistant store manager, buyer and advertising manager, and chief buyer. In 1920, Fred Pockrandt was elected secretary and director of the company. Soon, he moved into the position of vice-president.

He married Grace Eleanor Mitchell on June 16, 1914. They had two children, Jane and Frederick. In 1920, the family lived at 646 Blaine Avenue, Akron. The home still has amazing woodwork throughout it. Mrs. Pockrandt died in March of 1948 at the age of 56. The family was then living at 414 Merriman Road. At the time of Mr. Pockrandt’s death in June of 1971, he was living at 155 Schocalog Road in Fairlawn Heights. Fred and Grace Pockrandt are buried at Rose Hill Cemetery.

Henry Robinson was born April 27, 1844 in England. He was a son of William and Elizabeth (Fairbanks) Robinson. He went to school in East Liverpool where his family had moved in 1848.

In 1865, Henry became associated with his brothers in the Summit Pottery Works in Middlebury. In 1879, he was one of the founders of Robinson Bros. & Co., sewer pipe manufacturers, and in 1887, Henry became president of Whitmore, Robinson & Co. when it was incorporated.

Henry Robinson had many other business interests. He was one of the founders and the first president of the Citizens Electric Light Company which was formed on July 21, 1884, to furnish electric lights for Akron. Robinson was president and owner of the Akron Mining, Milling & Mfg. Co., a paint manufacturer concern in Aurora, Illinois, which later became the Robinson Paint Co. He was also one of the founders of the Niagara Sprinkler Co., of Akron, which manufactured automatic sprinkler systems.

Henry Robinson married Mary Cotter Myers on May 22, 1879. They had two children, Elizabeth and William.

Mr. Robinson died on September 21, 1906, of heart failure at the age of 62. Mrs. Robinson died in 1938 at the age of 82.

Address

550 Copley Rd
Akron, OH
44320

General information

The Summit County Historical Society manages and maintains the Perkins Stone Mansion, The John Brown House, and the Old Stone School. The Perkins Stone Mansion and John Brown House are available for tours beginning April 4, 2018, Wednesdays through Saturdays from 1-4 p.m. The Old Stone School on Broadway is a joint education venture with Akron Public Schools.

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About the Summit County Historical Society of Akron, Ohio

Founded in 1924, the mission of Summit County Historical Society, a 501(c)3 corporation, is to preserve and interpret the history of Summit County and Akron, and to educate regional communities about the people and events that have shaped our rich history. The Society owns and manages several properties including the Perkins Stone Mansion, home of Akron's founding family; John Brown House, home of the internationally recognized abolitionist; and Old Stone School in downtown Akron - a partnership with Akron Public Schools. Two of the properties are open to visitors, the John Brown Home and the Perkins Stone Mansion.

Tours of the Perkins Stone Mansion and John Brown House are available Wednesday through Saturday from 1:00 - 4:00pm, April 4 through December 22, 2018. The sheep will return to graze at Mutton Hill on May 12, 2018.

Our extensive collection of photographs and historic documents is housed at the Special Collections Division of the Akron-Summit County Public Library. Some documents from our collection are available for viewing online at the Summit Memory Project. To view pieces from our archival collection please contact the Special Collections Division at [email protected] or 330-643-9030.

The Women's History Project of the Akron Area is now a program of Summit County Historical Society.


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Comments

Hi, Everyone my daughters third book comes out April 13, 2021. The Serpents Curse.
Hi. Do you have any information on the Central Cigar Co. in Akron? Probably in the 1930's. I have a cigar box that was my Mom's that she probably got from her father. Thanks.
Who is Minor Road in Copley named after? Our grandparents Minor lived on Lakeland. We're pretty sure it wasn't named for them.
Found this while metal detecting. A token for a free quart of milk by A.W.Scudder - Milk Depot. Shown here, is also, his listing in the 1888-1889 Akron Business Directory. A few noteworthy things about him: he was postmaster at Fairlawn, was in the Civil War Battery A First Ohio Light Artillery, owned several farms, operated 3 milk depots in Akron, in 1891 moved to Fairview and it was through his efforts he was able to get Fairview renamed to Fairlawn. This is only a little that has been written about him. Just thought it was interesting to share.
Do you remember this building at 124 Howard Street in Akron, Ohio, of the brothers Angel and Georgi Nikolovi, owners of the Nicolas bros trading house - hotel, restaurant and others in 1920. Do you know the fate of this building today and its owners? Yordan Yordanov - historian
Thank You for the invite. 😃
Anyone know any info on this studio or photo
I found this cool postcard booklet from the 1950s focused on the Ohio Turnpike, but there are also some great shots of Akron including the old Viaduct and the Soap Box Derby! https://www.ebay.com/itm/203043933308
Are there other photos of Akron's firefighters?
do you have any old photos of the big house where highland towers is
The Summit County Historical Society is working on its first all women's concert for August 1. We're interested in your input!
I recovered 2 scrap books appears it might be from the same person. Can't find any identifying information on the owner, but there is loads and loads of Akron history in them specifically from people she knew that all may have attended the Zion Lutheran Church from the 30s into front page articles of D Day and the whose who getting married in Akron, beautiful photos of the brides and the newly engaged. One photo of Crouse students in 1927. Article and photo of a 14 yr old girl who ran away to Hollywood and eventually returned home, and an article about a Soldier who was killed as well as many other articles. I would love to get it into the hands of either your society or the special collections at the library, someone who will digitally document this stuff for public view. There are family names and church programs and what appears to be some beautiful prints from magazines. Unfortunately they are all glued down. I am with the Norton Historical Society and run their FB page and this is the kind of thing I would love to get my hands on and run copies of it on our page. These would be treasures for local families to see and have copies of. How can I get them into the right hands that won't just put it in a drawer?