History in the Making

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History

The Larkin Soap Company was one of the most innovative of its time. John D. Larkin started the company, producing just two products. But through its marketing innovations, led by Elbert Hubbard, Larkin Soap Company expanded its market and product lines to food and various household items to make it a fixture in the growing city of Buffalo. Taking Larkin's innovative lead, the Larkin Center of Commerce offers a multitude of types of spaces and various leaders to guide you through the leasing experience.

The Larkin Administration Building

The Administration Building was designed in 1903 and built in 1906 to house Larkin's growing company and reflect its humanistic ideals. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, it stood as a brick and mortar interpretation of classic Greek architecture; democratic and accessible. It featured greenery inside the office space and a large window to let natural light in, and was a perfect reflection of how Larkin ran his company. The Larkin Center recently designed and created an interpretive pier and wrought iron fence to mark the original placement of the Larkin Administration Building.

Turning The Corner To a Brighter Future

The Larkin Center of Commerce is emblematic of the qualities that have made Buffalo and the region what it is today. They are resilient and hard working people, respectful of the past, while also looking to make for a better tomorrow.

Leading the Way

We are ready to grow the next crop of innovators. In our incubators, we encourage creative, imaginative and diverse tenants, no matter what size they are, no matter what stage of growth. The best way to celebrate Buffalo’s history is to encourage the qualities that birthed it and that’s what we’re doing here at the Larkin Center of Commerce.

From the humble beginnings as a Western Union messenger, John D. Larkin grew to become a leading industrialist of the time. From his early partnership in the soap manufacturing firm of Larkin & Weller, he ultimately formed the Larkin Soap Company. Larkin quickly outgrew its headquarters and moved to 667 Seneca Street, the beginning of what is now know as the Larkin District. The rest is history.

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