Side A: Aluminum pioneer Charles Martin Hall was born in 1863 in Thompson, Ohio (Geauga County), and moved with his family to Oberlin in 1873. Hall graduated from Oberlin College in 1885, studying chemistry under Professor Frank Fanning Jewett (1844-1926). Jewett, who lived in this house from 1884 to 1923, encouraged Hall’s interest in chemistry and aluminum, then a semi-precious metal. Hall discovered an electrochemical reduction process for producing metallic aluminum from aluminum oxide dissolved in molten cryolite in his woodshed laboratory at his family’s home at 64 East College Street on February 23, 1886. This process, the culmination of research with Jewett, became the basis for the aluminum industry in America. In 1888 Hall co-founded the Pittsburgh Reduction Company, later the Aluminum Company of America (ALCOA). Upon his death in 1914, Hall left one-third of his estate to Oberlin College.
Sponsors: Ohio Bicentennial Commission, Oberlin Heritage Center/O.H.I.O., The International Paper Company, Foundation, and The Ohio Historical Society