— Compiled by Norma Hill,
Beacon Journal librarian

1845 Old Phoenix Bank opens in Medina.

1904 Central Savings & Trust Co. is organized.

?1930-31 The 28-story art-deco building is constructed by First Central Trust Co. in downtown Akron.

1934 First Central reopens after reorganization and begins to move cash into the hands of depositors in a 25 percent payoff after being frozen for 11 months.

1940 Loan from the Reconstruction Finance Corp. is paid in full.

1943 42,000 depositors of 10 years are paid in full by the bank.

1947 Name changes to First National Bank of Akron.

1949 Mortgage is paid off on First National Tower.

1956 First National merges with National Bank of Hudson.

1967 C. Blake McDowell, who was instrumental in saving the bank during the Great Depression, leaves the board of directors after 40 years.

?1981 First National Bank of Akron and Old Phoenix National Bank in Medina (founded in 1845) merge to form First Bancorporation of Ohio.

1984 Exchange Bank in Canal Fulton agrees to merger. The Twinsburg Banking Co., the last small-town bank in Summit County, is merged.

1985 First National Bank of Akron becomes First National Bank of Ohio.

1988 Peoples Federal Savings Bank in Wooster is acquired.

1989 First National Bank in Massillon is merged. First National Bank of Ohio agrees to sponsor the Soap Box Derby.

1994 Barberton-based Great Northern Savings Bank is acquired.

1995 Canton-based Citizens Savings Bank is bought. The holding company, First Bancorporation of Ohio becomes FirstMerit Corp. The names of the bank subsidiaries do not change.

?1996 Board chair Howard Flood retires after 33 years. FirstMerit becomes name of banks.

1997 Services are expanded when life insurance and financial consulting firm Abell & Associates is acquired.

2009 FirstMerit expands to Chicago by acquiring First Bank and its 24 branches.

2013 FirstMerit and Citizens Republic Bancorp merge.

2015 City transforms Cascade Plaza into a more inviting green space as part of a package to keep FirstMerit downtown.

2016 Huntington Banc­shares Inc. acquires FirstMerit Corp. in a $3.4 billion cash and stock deal.

— Compiled by Norma Hill, Beacon Journal librarian