DescriptionThe Cleveland Board of Education building is located at 1380 East 6th Street on the east side of Mall C. The building serves as the administrative center for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. It was designed by the architectural firm Walker and Weeks and completed in 1931. It is similar to the other buildings on the Mall in that it was designed in the Classical, Beaux-Arts style.
The statue of Abraham Lincoln on the west side of the building facing the Mall was paid for by donations from the schoolchildren of the Cleveland School District. It was sculpted by Max Kalish. The Gettysburg Address is carved on the base of the statue. The Board of Education building is also noted for its two murals in the main lobby: "The Progress of Education" and "The Branches of Education." Cleveland artist Cora Holden painted both murals.
The Cleveland Board of Education building completed the Group Plan's vision for the Mall. Originally, the Mall was supposed to replace Public Square as the center of downtown. The Mall was an expression of the Progressive Era and the City Beautiful Movement. City planners were dismayed by the social upheaval caused by the rapid industrialization of the previous decades and sought to fix the social ills associated with it. The aim of both movements and the Progressive Era was to reinvent cities as urban paradises which would inspire citizens to achieve the ideals of public duty and loyalty.