Ferdinand Schumacher, an immigrant from Germany and American entrepreneur, took an oat grain that most people fed to their livestock, and – after combining the grain with Akron’s abundant water supply from the canals — he became the Oatmeal King. His oats were grown and milled in Akron, Ohio, and then shipped out to the Union Army soldiers, keeping them fed during the Civil War.
The beauty of Schumacher’s ideas is that he re-purposed a product that was already available. A creative entrepreneur sees an existing resource and turns it into something beautiful. The spirit of Schumacher is alive and well in Akron, with a rebirth and re-purposing of the old infrastructure, which is being transformed into something new.
Eventually, Schumacher’s company merged to become the company that we are all familiar with today, the Quaker Oats Company. Today in Akron, Quaker Square, which is owned by The University of Akron, still bears the mark of the silos that once stored Schumacher’s oats. His idea helped to not only transform the landscape of Akron, but it helped to transform a nation by feeding the Union Army.
Akron is a city that is constantly re-purposing old buildings and vacant land into vibrant housing and green spaces for the community to enjoy. Gardens are starting to fill the vacant lots in Akron, creating food and helping to sustain the local food movement in restaurants and at local stores and farmers markets. Many of the old buildings downtown have been transformed into office space, apartments, commerce space and thriving businesses, bringing 21st century jobs to the city of Akron.
The NOHO Akron Cascade Lofts are another example of this transformation. Found on 21 W. North St., on the corner of North and Howard, 20 lofts are still available, with 12-foot ceilings, fantastic views of the valley, a direct connection to Summit Metro Parks and the Towpath Trail, secure parking and much, much more. The NOHO Akron Cascade Lofts are within walking distance to over 80 entertainment and dining venues, so you are guaranteed to never be bored in Akron.