Salem is a city in northern Columbiana County, Ohio, United States, with a small district in southern Mahoning County. At the 2010 census, the city's population was 12,303. Salem is the principal city of the Salem, OH Micropolitan Statistical Area, although the small portion of the city that extends into Mahoning County is considered part of the Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, OH-PA Metropolitan Statistical Area. Salem is 25 miles (40 km) southwest of Youngstown and 30 miles (48 km) east of Canton.
Founded by the Quaker society in 1806, Salem was notably active in the abolitionist movement of the early- to mid-19th century as a hub for the American Underground Railroad. Through the 20th century, Salem served as one of many industrial towns in the Mahoning Valley. Today, the city enjoys being an exurb of Youngstown and is the commercial hub of northwestern Columbiana County, home to Allegheny Wesleyan College and Kent State University at Salem.
Salem was founded by a Pennsylvanian potter, John Straughan, and a New Jersey clockmaker, Zadok Street, in 1806. The name Salem was taken from "Jerusalem", which means "city of peace".
Early settlers to the city included the Religious Society of Friends ("Quakers"), which the school system's sports teams honor by referring to themselves collectively as the "Quakers."
Salem was incorporated in 1830.
Over its history, Salem thrived on an industrial-based economy, advantageously located between Cleveland and Pittsburgh. For several decades, the largest corporations located in Salem included American Standard Brands, Eljer, Mullins Manufacturing, Deming Pump, and Salem China.