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Some of Akron's Historic Homes Face Uncertain Futures

photo of entrance to Cornus Hill Mansion
The entrance to Fairlawn's Cornus Hill mansion

Plans to demolish the fire damaged Cornus Hill Mansion in Fairlawn are raising questions about the fates of other historical buildings in the area.

Endangered houses such as the John S. Knight home stand in stark contrast to well-preserved mansions such as Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens, now a museum.

Dr. Alice Christie, with Progress Through Preservation of Greater Akron, says what separates these neglected houses and well-preserved sites like the Harvey Firestone Jr. home is money.

“The person who owns the Firestone, Harvey Firestone Jr. house is just putting a lot of money into it. And here’s what I see as the difference. Those homes were lucky enough to find someone who had that interest and enough money to do it.”

Christie says there are at least five historical structures in the Greater Akron area in imminent danger from disrepair, including the Robinson Mansion and the original St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.