4/09/2013

Charles M. Hall

Charles Martin Hall was a very important man in the Small Town's History due to his involvement in the aluminum making process.  Originally from Ohio, he moved to Pittsburgh to find financial backing for his process.  He teamed up with Alfred E. Hunt to start the Reduction Company of Pittsburgh, which eventually became The Aluminum Company of America.  He is also credited with the American spelling of the word "aluminum".  The story is that he misspelled it while publicizing his process; the English spelling is "aluminium".
There is a community in the Small Town called "the Hall community".  When I grew up, this community was the "African-American Community".  The houses in that section of town were built by the aluminum company to house the blacks that worked in the plants.  This community was built on the other side of the railway trussle, causing a definite split in the Small Town.  (I'll get into this more in a future post.)  For this reason, I always thought, growing up, Mr. Hall was black.
Besides the community, the school for the blacks was called Charles M. Hall.  One of the major roads is Hall Road.
Another major road is "Hunt", named for Alfred E., who was Hall's business partner.  Other roads in the Small Town beginning with "H" are:
Henry Street:  Named for Joseph Henry who invented spool of winding of magnets and fog signals.  If you have any idea what that means, let me know!
Howe Street:  Elias Howe, who invented the sewing machine
Huxley Street:  Thomas Huxley, whose work is the basis for modern biology
Hoopes Street:  William Hoopes, developed process of production of 99.99% pure aluminum

As you can probably guess, the older streets of the Small Town are named for engineers, inventors, and scientists.  
Mr. Hall passed away 5 years before the Small Town was incorporated.  He died a wealthy man at the age of 51, but wasn't married and had no children.  His wealth was donated to various charities.

4 comments:

  1. I love all this history and insight into your part of the world. Very interesting.

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  2. Such a great post..thanks so much for sharing!

    Shannon at I Survived and Now I Run

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  3. I don't think I knew all that. It's fun to read since I have taken a spin down Hunt Rd. a tiime or two : )

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  4. Interesting reading about your town.

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