The Akron Fire Department dates back to 1839 when Akron Council authorized the creation of volunteer fire companies to replace the Fire Warden. The first of these new companies was the “North Akron Fire Company” in December of 1839.
The Portage Hotel at Main Street and Market Street replaced the Empire House Hotel in 1912. The Portage was Akron’s leading hotel until construction of the Mayflower Hotel. In 1935, in the Portage Hotel’s ballroom, Akron’s rubber workers created the United Rubber Workers (URW) union.