“I think every town — large and small — has some type of rallying point,” said Mayor Francis Cicchinelli.
For Massillon, it is football.
“We’re proud of that,” he said. “But there is more to Massillon than just high school football.”
Massillon was founded in 1826 by James Duncan from New Hampshire. Duncan arrived in 1816 on the land now occupied by the Massillon State Hospital. He purchased adjoining land in 1826 to form Massillon, named by his wife in honor of France-Jean Baptiste Massillon, a court preacher to Louis IV.
The first building was built at the southeast corner of Erie Street and Oak Avenue. When the Ohio-Erie Canal opened in 1828, the became known as the Port of Massillon. Massillon became known for its wheat exports.
Present-day Massillon has replaced its industries with a mixture of retail and commercial businesses.
The city also covers parts or all of five school districts; the largest is Massillon City.
“It’s a great town to live and raise a family (in),” Cicchinelli said.
“WHY I LOVE MASSILLON”
BY C. TODD LOCKE, WRL ADVERTISING
Why do I love Massillon? What’s not to love? If you live in Massillon City, parts of Jackson Township, parts of Perry Township, or parts of Tuslaw you probably have a Massillon address.
This is where I grew up. This is where my children where born. It’s a place with great schools and great people. It’s a close-knit community. It’s a place with a parks and recreation system that borders on being visionary.
It’s a place where, pound for pound, you’ll find the most passionate politicians in the country — and where they still listen to constituents.
Finally, it’s a place where you can get anything you want, whether you’re looking for great dining, movies, musical entertainment or athletic events.
You’ve got all the amenities with the small community feel that so many people cherish.
That’s Massillon and that’s why I’m staying here.
MEDIAN VALUE, OWNER-OCCUPIED HOUSING UNITS $91,558
MEDIAN AGE 39.6
MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME $37,772
AVERAGE TRAVEL TIME TO WORK: 22 MINUTES
NUMBER OF COLLEGE GRADUATES (ASSOCIATE DEGREE OR HIGHER) 3,756
INSIDER SCOOP ON MASSILLON
CLAIM TO FAME: High school football.
BET YOU DIDN’T KNOW: In the early 1900s, Forest City Motor Car Co. built a car, the Jewel, in Massillon. Between 1906 and 1909, the company produced roughly 1,000 cars. Production stopped in 1909.
PARTY OF THE YEAR: The last regular-season game for the varsity football team, when it plays its crosstown rival McKinley.
FAMOUS SONS/DAUGHTERS: Lillian Gish (actress); David Canary (actor); Jacob S. Coxey Sr. (politician and activist); Chris Spielman (football player); Paul Brown (football coach and team owner).
ANNUAL SUMMER CONCERT SERIES Downtown Massillon
Funded only through donations, the annual concert series is free and family-friendly.
CAMEO GRILL 809 Erie St. S. 330-837-1919
The best burgers are served in this simple neighborhood tavern — at reasonable prices.
SMILEY’S RISTORANTE & PIZZERIA 27 Lincoln Way E 330-832-3388
Generous portions of old-fashioned Italian food, tucked into a charming downtown Massillon storefront.
MASSILLON MUSEUM 121 Lincoln Way E 330-833-4061
A lively and fun museum in the heart of Massillon. As its slogan goes, “Do the Mu,” and participate in its ambitious events and programming schedule.
PAUL BROWN TIGER STADIUM 314 Russell Blvd. SE 330-833-2474
A mecca for varsity football, the stadium holds about 15,100 fans and is home to the Massillon Tigers football team.