Flora Wellman London (1843-1922)
Follow the purple arrows on the signs as you walk
Flora Wellman was raised in wealth and respectability in a mansion built about 1830 at this corner of Lincoln Way and Fourth Street Northeast. When she was a very young woman, a bout with typhoid stunted her growth and damaged her hair. She succumbed to the lure of the West.
Flora, a woman venturing alone through the frontier, supported herself by teaching music lessons and performing Spiritualist programs. She claimed to channel American Indian Chief Black Hawk.
Eventually making her way to Seattle, she fell in with John Chaney, who refused to marry her when she found herself carrying a child. Shortly after the baby was born, Flora married John London in Oakland, California. Her son, Jack London, became the famous author, known for The Call of the Wild, White Fang, and other adventure tales of the West.
Neither Flora nor her famous son ever came back to Massillon, but her story was listed first every day on radio station WTIG’s news sheet when the station broadcast from this location.
Directions: From here, continue in the same direction for two blocks on the same side of Lincoln Way East to the corner of Sixth Street. Look across Sixth Street at the First Baptist Church.