Akron’s Main Street has seen many changes over the years. The city would hardly be recognized by founders Simon Perkins and Paul Williams.
Motor cars were still new on the scene when this image of Akron’s Main Street was captured by the photographer.
Postcard view of Akron’s Main Street from Market Street looking south. Founded along the Little Cuyahoga River in 1825 by Simon Perkins and Paul Williams, the location of Akron carefully and strategically planned at the summit of the developing Ohio and Erie Canal.
The Unique theater on Main Street was one of Akron’s famous vaudeville theaters. Around 1905, The Unique would be converted into Akron’s first motion picture theater.
A view of a busy Main Street looking North with Mill Street as the first intersection. Akron was central to the street car and interurban rail traffic of the day.
At a time before automobiles ruled the streets, most of Akron’s leading stores, theaters, and hotels were located along South Main Street. Trolley’s and horse carts added to the bustle of downtown.
Akron’s Flatiron Building was located at Howard and Main Streets in downtown Akron. It was built in 1907 and demolished in 1967.
An early view of Akron’s Main Street complete with streetcar, horse cart and vintage automobiles.
Another busy day on Akron’s Main Street. The abundance of entertainment, shopping, and dining establishments served as a draw to Akron’s downtown.
Before the rubber giants moved away, Akron’s Main Street was one of the busiest in America. With an abundance of entertainment, shopping, and dining opportunities along with convenient mass transit, it was a natural meeting place.
Michael O’Neil and his partner Isaac Dyas began serving Akron shoppers in 1877. Their first store was a dry goods store located at 114 East Market Street. Before being sold in 1912, O’neils had several locations in the Akron Canton Area.
“South Main Street is the main thoroughfare in Akron. Most of the leading stores, theaters, and hotels are located on this street. It is the dividing line for cross streets, all numbered running east and west start from here. State Routes Nos. 8, 18 and 36 pass through South Main Street.” – Federman’s, Shulans, Bear’s,…
Interurban cars are lined up outside the Hamilton Building on South Main Street. It’s another busy day in Akron.
The streetlights outside the J. Koch Company, the Grotto, Lewis Jewlery and the Buchtel are all aglow on this chilly night in Akron. Main Street is busy with Interurban cars and trolleys shuttling Akronites in and out of town.
C.L.U. Hall, Walsh Block, 65 S. Main St, Akron, Ohio.
Mill Street looking west was a busy place. The five-story Hotel Buchtel was opened in 1884 on the southeast corner of Main and Mill Streets. It featured a hydraulic-powered elevator, electric lights in every room and bathrooms on every floor. – S.A. Freedlander Optician, Hotel Buchtel European Rooms
Looking down on Akron’s Main Street gives a picture of how vibrant and busy this city was in its heyday.
Main Street, Akron, Ohio.