Click here to see the area history of Norton.
Click here to see the History of Norton Government and previous administrations.

   BACK to homepage

The following information has been compiled and maintained by the Norton Historical Society

Norton Historical Society
meets at and manages the


Biery House and Museum
located at 3412 Greenwich Rd 

 

Correspondence may be mailed to:
4060 Columbia Woods Dr.
Norton, Ohio  44203
Telephone: (330) 825-7815

 
For more information, please call:
Patsy Snyder, Curator, at 330-825-7572

Service Area:
City Of Norton
covering the former hamlets of Norton Center,
Loyal Oak, Western Star, Hametown, and Sherman. 

   

Collections:
Photographs, documents, maps, books, family histories, local papers,
clothing of Nortonís early settlers, and other items relating to the history of our City.

In conjunction with the Norton Alumni Association,
there is a section devoted to the Norton Public Schools,
including the record of every graduating class since 1895.

Century Homes
A Committee has been designated to establish the procedure
for homeowner application and a method to appropriately mark
homes or other important structures built over 100 years prior to the application. 

Activities:
Monthly newsletter, educational programs.

Programs:   
Meetings held monthly.

Society:
A steering committee interested in researching and recording Norton history met in April 1984 with Katharine Kendall the acting chairperson.  In November, Phyllis Arkett, William Blackburn, Katherine and Norman Kendall, Donald Miller, Jill Miller, Kathleen Pantuso, Ernest Seiberling, Cyndee Simmons, Paul Suloff, George Tomko, and Cliff Wooding met with Susan Wasick of the Copley Historical Society to discuss objectives of forming a Norton Historical Society.

Area History:
Norton Township became a Village in 1961 and a City in 1969.  As a township, and prior to the establishment of the city of Barberton in 1892, Norton consisted of seven little hamlets: Norton Center, Loyal Oak, Western Star, Sherman, Hametown, Johnsonís Corners, and New Portage.  There were few settlers until after the war of 1812.  Then the New Englanders came, followed shortly by persons of German descent from Pennsylvania. 

Norton derived its name from Birdseye Norton, the chief landowner and a cousin of David Hudson, founder of Hudson Township.  Norton was known throughout the area for its fertile land and prosperous farms.  Coal was prevalent in the southwestern portion of the township. 

The following are historical areas in the City of Norton

Knecht Cider Mill, 3137 Cleve-Mass Road
The cider mill was built by Edward Laubach in 1867 for $3,200. 
The original structure was a steam sawmill. 
The mill burned to the ground in 1874, but was immediately rebuilt for about $1,000. 
The property was sold in 1879 to John J. Knecht and converted into a cider mill. 
It is still used, mainly during the annual Cider Festival in late September. 
The present owners, the Crawford family, are direct descendants of John J. Knecht. 

Country Store, 2334 S. Cleve-Mass Road. 
The Country Store dates to 1828 and is believed to have been owned by Birdseye Norton. 
It served as a stagecoach stop on the route from Marietta to Cleveland.  It was later famous as the Loyal Oak Country Store. 
Local legend has it that a tunnel employed as part of the ďUnderground RailroadĒ
runs from the property under the street intersection to the Loyal Oak Tavern. 
The Country Store is built of hand-hewn oak posts and beams.
 

Loyal Oak Tavern, 3044 Wadsworth Road
Built around 1840, the Tavern was a hotel, according to the 1847 Summit County Atlas.
Prior to that, in 1856 was H. Bechtelís Cabinet Shop. 
As a hotel it was known as the Loyal Oak House (per the inscription on the third floor wall by Ray Wilhelm, the bartender in 1886).  In 1911-1912, the business was operated by Jack Lozier and his mother. 
In the 1930ís and 1940ís it was known as Adamís Place, so named after the then owner, Adam Pinter. 
Old-timers tell of beer cooling in an underground stream in the basement during those early times. 
The original half-log bar is still in the basement with a keg in the wall dating to the 1930ís. 

Pillar Home, 4273 Greenwich Road
This is a private residence, NOT open to the public.
The Pillar Home was constructed in 1840, probably by Nathan Seiberling, the patriarch of the Seiberling family. 
John, the eldest son of Nathan and Catherine, lived here when his two sons, Frank and Charles, were born. 
He and his wife also had five daughters. 
Frank and Charles Seiberling were the founders of the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company,
and also the Seiberling Rubber Company. 
The house in now under restoration. 
 

Grace United Church of Christ, 3285 S. Cleve-Mass Road
Like the Lutheran Church, the Grace United Church of Christ building was constructed in 1885. 
It stands on stones taken from the original church, which was built in 1851. 
Originally known as Grace Reformed Church, the German Reformed congregation
went into surrounding woods to hew out logs for their wooden structure. 

Trinity Lutheran Church, 3281 S. Cleve-Mass Road
The Lutheran Church was built in 1885, replacing a two-story stone structure that the congregation shared
with the German Reformed Church since 1851.  They met on alternate Sundays. 
The Reformed congregation sold their interest to the Lutheran folds who, thereupon
dismantled the edifice and used the stones for the foundation of their brick building. 
The church boasts an antique organ, which is in use every Sunday. 
One of the oldest cemeteries in the area is behind the church with stones from 1853.
 

Western Star Cemetery, 3711 S. Medina Line Road
Cemetery markers date back to 1816. 
Among families buried there are Spicers, Griswolds, and other early settlers of Western Star. 

Norton Center Cemetery, 4230 S. Cleve-Mass Road
According to legend, Indians are buried here along with many residents,
including the Van Hynings, Bates (early settlers of Loyal Oak, formerly Bates Corners) and others. 
At one time, three stone markers were removed from the Black Plague Cemetery on Wadsworth Road
and placed in the Norton Cemetery. 
Out of a possible two dozen stones in the Black Plague Cemetery these were the only ones located. 
 The earliest date was 1844.

Click here to see the area history of Norton.

Click here to see the History of Norton Government and previous administrations.

  BACK to homepage