[graphic] Ohio and Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor: A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary
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Hower Mansion
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Hower Mansion
Photo courtesy of Hower House

The Hower Mansion is one of the finest and best preserved examples of a Second Empire house in Ohio. Located in the once fashionable Fir Hill neighborhood in Akron , the house was built in 1871 by John Henry Hower. Hower was a leading Akron industrialist and made his money in the milling, reaping and cereal industries. These industries provided Akron with its 19th-century industrial boom, because of the numerous milling operations found along the cascade of the Ohio and Erie Canal . The brick house was designed by Jacob Snyder and features a corner tower and a mansard roof. The floor plan of the 28-room mansion radiates out from an octagonal central hall. Highlights of the house include the stair tower and the third floor ballroom. The Howers traveled extensively and purchased items for their home from around the world. The house is fully furnished with period furnishing and decorated to reflect the lifestyle of the Howers in the Victorian era.

[photo] Interior view of the Hower Mansion
Photo courtesy of Hower House

In 1901, John Henry's son Milton Otis, his wife Blanche, and their two children, Grace and John, came to live in the house. The elderly Hower and his second wife moved to a smaller home nearby. Blanche continued to live in the house even after John Henry and Milton Otis both died in 1916. Sometime later, Grace and her husband, John, moved into Hower House with Blanche. The house was occupied by the Hower family for 100 years before it was deeded to The University of Akron in 1970. The Hower Mansion is supported by private donations, the Friends of Hower House, the Hower House Victorians and The University of Akron.

The Hower Mansion is located at 60 Fir Hill in Akron. The house is open from February-December, Wednesday-Saturday from 12:00pm-3:30pm and Sunday from 1:00pm-4:00pm. There is a fee for admission. It is also available for event rentals. Visit the house’s website or call 330-972-6909 for further information.

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