The first meeting of the Akron Chapter of the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of
Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America (SPEBSQSA) was held on March 9, 1939 at the Akron City Club. A quartet contest
was sponsored on April 7 at the Akron Armory with a first prize of $250. The prize money was applied to the expenses
of the winning quartet at the annual convention held in Tulsa that year. There is no record of who the first winner
In July of 1945, the Akron Chapter was formally presented a charter by International SPEBSQSA Vice-president
Jim Knipe. Nelson Peter was the first president of the Akron chapter. The first chorus director was Earle Gardner.
Some of the first chapter quartets included: The Akronaires, The Rubber City Four and The Atomic Four.
first annual show was held on May 21, 1948. Twenty-five men performed on stage with the chorus. Ed Duplaga was
the General Chairman. Some of the quartets performing were: the Rubber City Four, The Tiger Town Four, The Atomic Four,
The Tom Cats, The Funmakers, The Pitch Pipers as well as the Massillon Chorus.
In the years since that first show,
the Akron Chapter has continued a tradition of providing top quality shows for local Barbershop fans. These shows have
included these International Champions along the way:
The Schmitt Brothers
Mid States Four
Mark IV, Oriole Four
Bluegrass Student Union
Most Happy Fellows
Rural Route Four
Chiefs of Staff
Gas House Gang
and many other medal winners too numerous to mention.