Outhwaite Homes

Description

The Outhwaite Homes Estates, along with the Cedar Apartments and Lakeview Terrace, were the first three public housing projects to be completed in Cleveland. The three projects were also among the first in the nation to receive approval and funding from the federal government's newly-created Public Works Administration in 1935.

Outhwaite's brick Art Deco buildings, grouped around grassy courtyards, originally contained 557 units. Expansion occurred only a few years after Outhwaite's 1937 opening as demand for public housing in Cleveland continued. The need for new housing was particularly great within the African-American community, whose growing numbers were leading to overpopulation in the Central neighborhood, the city's black enclave. Initially, African-Americans seeking public housing could only live at the Outhwaite Homes - in the Central neighborhood - as officials sought to keep each housing project racially homogeneous.

In 1938, brothers Louis and Carl Stokes, who went on to noted political careers, moved to the Outhwaite Homes with their mother, Louise. Louis Stokes was a US Congressional Representative for nearly three decades and his brother Carl became the first African-American mayor of Cleveland in 1967. Both brothers credited their time at Outhwaite with having a role in their success.

Video Show

The Promise of Public Housing - Outhwaite

Growing Up At Outhwaite Homes

Audio Show

The Night Carl Stokes Became Mayor

Newscaster Leon Bibb describes the night that Carl Stokes became Mayor of Cleveland

Outhwaite Pride

Venerine Branham remembers Cleveland's Outhwaite Homes as a place of pride, support and high expectations

Voting For Carl Stokes

Carmel Whiting describes taking advantage of her first chance to vote in Cleveland during the election of Carl Stokes in 1967

Photos Show

Carl and Louis Stokes, ca. 1930s

The future politicians moved to the Outhwaite Homes with their mother Louise in 1938.

Image courtesy of Western Reserve Historical Society

Louis Stokes with Parents, 1925

Charles Stokes died in 1928, leaving his wife Louise to raise sons Carl and Louis by herself.

Image courtesy of Western Reserve Historical Society

Carl and Louis Stokes with Mother

Carl and Louis Stokes post with their mother, Louise Stokes, around 1970. Louise moved with her sons to the Outhwaite Homes in 1938.

Image Courtesy of Cleveland State University. Michael Schwartz Library. Division of Special Collections. Cleveland Press Collection

Aerial View, ca. 1940

An aerial view of the Outhwaite Homes taken around 1940.

Image courtesy of Western Reserve Historical Society

Gardening Program At Outhwaite, 1941

Kids of all ages work together to garden at the Outhwaite Homes in 1941.

Image Courtesy of Cleveland State University. Michael Schwartz Library. Division of Special Collections. Cleveland Press Collection.

Kids At Outhwaite, 1952

Youngsters play on the lawn in front of an apartment building at Outhwaite Homes in 1952.

Image Courtesy of Cleveland State University. Michael Schwartz Library. Division of Special Collections. Cleveland Press Collection.

Opening Celebration, 1937

The Outhwaite Homes housing project opens with a celebration in 1937.

Image Courtesy of Cleveland State University. Michael Schwartz Library. Division of Special Collections. Cleveland Press Collection.

Cite this Page

“Outhwaite Homes ,” Cleveland Historical, accessed September 2, 2014, http:/​/​clevelandhistorical.​org/​items/​show/​11.​
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