The Incorruptible Cashier

A Dayton, Ohio man, James Ritty, became a saloon owner in 1871. Ritty had the misfortune of untrustworthy employees who stole money from the business. In 1878 bound for Europe on a ship, Ritty noticed a machine that could count the number of times the vessel’s propeller made a full rotation. Ritty saw that machine as the basis for his own invention—a machine that would mechanically keep track of his sales.

When Ritty came back to the United States he employed his brother, who was a mechanic, to help him invent the first cash register. It was 4 November 1879 when Ritty patented his invention, calling it Ritty’s Incorruptible Cashier. Ritty’s original machine did not include a cash drawer. However, it did allow Ritty and other users to record the number and amount of each sale at their businesses, reducing the likelihood of theft.

After patenting his Incorruptible Cashier Ritty started a company to manufacture the cash registers in Dayton, OH. Ritty’s bad luck wasn’t over though, unfortunately the invention didn’t draw many business owners’ interest. Ritty’s manufacturing company closed quickly.

Ritty ended up selling his patent to a group of investors from Ohio. John H. Patterson was one of these investors and eventually he turned Ritty’s Incorruptible Cashier into a fortune. In 1884, Patterson established founded the National Cash Register Company.


The Sherwin-Williams Company, Cleveland, OH

In 1866 in Cleveland, Ohio, Edward Williams and Henry Sherwin created the Sherwin-Williams Company. Their company grew quickly; however, the greatest growth started in 1880 when they invented ready-mixed paint. Before they invented the type of paint we are used to using today, consumers would have to buy separate ingredients and then mix the paint themselves. Sherwin-Williams single-handedly changed the paint industry with pre-mixed paint, making it much easier for DIY’ers to complete projects themselves.

In 1888 the Sherwin-Williams company bought the Calumet Paint Company located near Chicago, Illinois which opened up the Western part of the United States to their business. This allowed them to grow even more quickly.

By the early 20th century, 1905, the Sherwin-Williams Company was selling paint in the entire U.S. as well as across the globe in South America, Canada and parts of Europe. 1905 was also the year the company began using their now famous “cover the earth” logo.

It was also during this time the company began to institute programs to help improve the working and living conditions of their own workers. It was due to these efforts in this regard that helped them maintain good relations between corporate and the blue-collar workers and peaceful. During this time other firms were experiencing eruptions of strikes over pay and working conditions.

During the twentieth century the Sherwin-Williams Company became one of the leading producers of not only paints but lacquers and varnishes in the U.S.


The Akron Indians/Akron Pros Football Team

The Akron Indians were a professional football team. The team was a part of the National Football League from 1923-1926. It was in 1920 that the American Professional Football Association formed. The American Professional Football Association would become the National Football League in 1922.

The Akron Indians won the league championship in 1920 and the first team to win a championship in the American Professional Football Association.

Following their championship win in the American Professional Football Association in 1920, the team faced years of struggle. They finished third in 1921, tenth in 1922 and only finished higher than thirteenth place in the 1925 season when they came in fifth.

The team experienced significant financial losses from 1912 to 1919. The team was purchased by Art Ranney who was an Akron businessman and former football play at the University of Akron and Frank Nied who was a cigar store owner. They purchased the team in 1920. The new owners quickly changed the name of the team to the Akron Pros hoping to inspire better attendance and performance.

Ranney and Nied became friends with Fritz Pollard and eventually signed him to play for the team. Later Ranney and Nied would make Pollard the first African-American coach in the NFL.

For Greene Ville

American General Anthony Wayne, in late 1793, ordered the construction of Fort Greene Ville. It was to be named for his friend and comrade from the Revolutionary War, Nathaniel Greene. Wayne’s army was marching against Indigenous Americans near the Maumee River. Wayne sought to punish them for their victory, called St. Clair’s Defeat by European settlers, in 1791.

The fort was located about five miles north of Fort Jefferson on the grounds that are now Greenville, Ohio. The walls of the fort were ten feet high. The stockade protected about fifty acres. General Wayne used Fort Greene Ville as an encampment during winter, 11793-1794. He also used it as a staging area for his attacks against Ohio’s indigenous people in the same year.

In 1794 after his victory at the Battle of Fallen Timbers, General Wayne used the fort to encourage indigenous peoples along the Maumee River to negotiate. Because their British allies in the area failed to help them against U.S. forces, many tribal leaders went to Fort Greene Ville looking for peace. Although terms were reached on 3 August 1795 the peace it achieved was brief as European settlers would violate the treaty and move into land that was intended for the indigenous people. More violence followed as a result.


The Ohio State Bird: the Northern Cardinal


Before the 19th century, Cardinalis Cardinalis or the Northern Cardinal was rare in Ohio due to the state’s densely forested environment. The Cardinal prefers a mixed ecosystem that includes woodlands, open plain and brush. Heavily forested Ohio was not the ideal condition for the bird until European settlers began deforesting the area to gather open land, fuel and construction supplies. By the 1800’s the environment changed enough that it became heavily populated with Cardinals.

Today, the Cardinal can be found virtually everywhere in Ohio and in both urban and rural ecosystems.

Male Cardinals are known for their bright red coloring and melodic whistling. The females, as with many species, to protect the nest and offspring are duller in color. The females usually present as mostly grayish to brown with a red tint and red beak.

They are social birds, yet male Cardinals are aggressive when it comes to defending their territory which can be as large as four acres. These birds do not migrate, they remain in their nesting areas during winter. They primarily feed on seeds but will also consume sap and grains. While they have many melodies and rhythms to their songs their “who-it, who-it” and “what-cheer-cheer-cheer” songs.  

The Ohio General Assembly in 1933 declared the Northern Cardinal as the state bird due to its popularity among Ohio citizens for its coloring and singing. The Cardinal is such a popular song bird that Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Indiana and Illinois all have adopted the Northern Cardinal as their state bird.