Journey to Historic and National Treasures
Driving through the Canalway becomes a bit more fun when following the signed America’s Byway route to key Canalway locations.
The ride through Stark County is packed with historic, cultural and national treasures - from the iconic Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton to President McKinley’s Tomb - a National Historic Landmark. This part of the Byway boasts a north-south segment as well as an east-west leg, and also intersects with America’s first byway, the historic Lincoln Highway!
Finding Your Way
The nationally designated route is not a single road - but a carefully mapped route to key regional destinations. Blue and orange signs bearing the “Ohio & Erie Canalway America’s Byway” name guide you on this driving journey.
- The main North-South route of the Byway – in eastern Stark County–continues to follow the historic path of the Ohio & Erie Canal. It takes you through three former canal villages—Canal Fulton, Massillon, and Navarre. This route is more rural in nature, particularly through northern and southern Stark County.
- The East-West leg of the route guides you from the Lake Avenue Trailhead along Rt. 21 in Massillon east toward historic Spring Hill Farm, the Exploration Gateway and Sippo Lake Park, into Canton where you can stop at the Canton Museum of Art, view the angels on top of the Canton Courthouse and visit the First Ladies Museum - a National Historic Site.
America’s Byway Fast Facts - Stark
- Key North/South Roads – S along Erie Ave – through Canal Fulton on Canal St. – Rejoin Erie Ave. into Massillon – S on First St. NE – West on Tremont Ave. SW – S on 17th SW & Carmont Ave. SW – E on Elton St.– E on Canal through Navarre – S on Hudson Dr. SW – S on Riverland Ave. SW – E on SR 212 into Bolivar
- Massillon to Canton Leg – Key East/West Roads – (12th Street corridor) – Head out (from the Lake Ave. Towpath Trailhead) East on Lake Ave from Rt. 21– S on Wales Rd. – E on Hankins St. in Massillon to 12th St. Canton – S on Market Ave. in downtown Canton – ending at 6th Street SE in Canton, in front of the Canton Classic Car Museum and The Repository.
How to get there
Map Your Trip! - Use the map to find the route the America’s Byway takes through this section of the Canalway. The roads above can act as potential starting points.
How to follow the route
- Byway Signs - are posted along both sides of each route - to guide you north and south - and in this area - east and west!
- Follow the signs - Simply follow any left, right directionals on the signs.
- Massillon-Canton Leg:
- In Massillon - Look for the “Begin Canton” sign that marks your trip east to Canton
- In Canton - Look for the “Begin Massillon” sign that takes you back to Massillon
- Not ready to stop driving? Head back to the main North/South route - after all there are 110 Miles for you to explore!
- Haven’t seen a sign in awhile? That’s OK - signs appear occasionally on straightaway sections of the route - but primarily occur prior to intersections where a turn is needed.
Connecting with the Lincoln Highway
The Ohio & Erie Canalway America’s Byway and the Lincoln Highway Historic Byway now connect in both Canton (at the corner of Market Ave. & Tuscarawas St.) and in Massillon (at Lincoln Way & First St. NE).
Did You Know?
The Lincoln Highway was the first east-west highway in America, and demonstrated the potential of cross-country car travel!
Stark County Highlights
- Canal Fulton, a preserved canal era town, has a Canalway Visitor Center and tours on the St. Helena III Canal Boat - for a first-hand experience of canal life.
- Jackson Bog State Nature Preserve — a 10” drive from 40 Corners Trailhead north on Revere Ave. and east on Fulton Dr., this park is filled with rare plants and insects, so bring a camera and binoculars! Learn more in Birdwatching/Stark.
- You’ll pass through the heart of Massillon. Besides the Massillon Museum & Ohio Society of Military History, enjoy a drive past the stately homes in nearby Fourth St. Historic District.
- Nickles Bakery — When you smell the fresh-baking bread, you’ve arrived in Navarre! This 100+ year-old business has a Thrift Bakery that’s worth your stop as you drive north on State Rt. 21 or east on State Rt. 62
Massillon–Canton Route – a path to America’s history
As noted, this route takes your drive near many attractions that chronicle our area’s history - and our country’s culture - from canal times to the present. You’ll also find:
- Spring Hill Historic Home (1820s) once a stop on the Underground Railroad
- Congressman Ralph Regula Canalway Center in the Exploration Gateway at Sippo Lake Park—A 10-minute drive from Lake Ave. Trailhead via the East-West leg, this exhibit hall showcases the natural and cultural history of the Ohio & Erie Canalway and offers nature programs, wetland trails and boating. Learn more at starkparks.com
- Canton’s Veterans’ Park
- McKinley Presidential Library and Museum - Mobility Issues? Call ahead for alternate entrances to the monument’s 108 steps.
- Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad - Stop and take a ride on the Canton-Akron Flyer. Trains run twice daily through August - learn more at cvsr.com
- Pro Football Hall of Fame - Late July/August - the annual Enshrinement festival.
More On the America’s Byway
To learn more - we invite you to read the Ohio & Erie Canalway America’s Byway Management Plan Update - a 77-page comprehensive Byway guide.
Before You Go
Plan & Expand Your Visit - using site features
Watch for the America's Byway signs.
Follow the Canalway
Visitor Note - This is a test Sampler for an out-of-state partner and cannot be followed in our region. Begin your journey at Riverside Park with a walking tour of the Michigan Firehouse Museum and Ypsilaniti Automotive Heritage Museuem located within minutes of the Huron River. Riverside Park near River Mile 40 (a short walk to Downtown and Depot Town). This park hosts ample parking, restrooms and launch. The Ypsilanti Automotive Heritage Museum www.ypsilantiautoheritage.org 100 E. C... More »
A Towpath was a Towing Path Bicyclists and walkers on the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail today follow the same path that in the 1800s was used by mules and mule-drivers to pull canal boats—with some exceptions. Canal Fever , KSU Press, 2009 More »