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The city of Akron, Ohio began as a town at the summit of the Ohio and Erie Canal. It was named "South Akron" for a period of time when an adjacent village changed its name to North Akron before the two were joined as Akron in 1836. The city soon grew as a result of its location on the canal, and had as many as 10,000 residents by 1870.
Akron is most known as a center of rubber production. The B.F. Goodrich company began production in the town in 1869, sparking a major growth period for the town and attracting other rubber manufacturers. Goodyear Tire and Rubber was founded in the town in 1898, and General Tire came in 1915. Soon, Goodyear became the top tire manufacturing company in the nation, earning Akron the nickname of "rubber capital of the world." A large number of immigrants came to the town in search of work in the rubber industry.
In the 1970s and 1980s, many of the rubber manufacturers began to pull their operations out of Akron and transfer them elsewhere. Goodyear was the only company whose headquarters remained in Akron.
Today, the rubber industry is still a major part of life in Akron, and employs many of the city's citizens.