Filed Under Healthcare

Lutheran Hospital

One of Ohio City's Oldest Institutions

Founded in 1896, Lutheran Hospital is one not only one of Ohio City's oldest institutions. It is also one of the largest, its campus covering an area from Franklin Boulevard south to Jay Avenue, and from West 25th Street west to West 28th Street. The hospital has also had a major impact on historic Franklin Circle.

Organized by the Evangelical Lutheran Hospital Association, the hospital was first sited in the Beckwith House, located on the northwest side of Franklin Circle at 247 Hanover (West 28th) Street. That house was built by M.E. Beckwith, one of Cleveland's earliest professional photographers. (In the mid-nineteenth century, Beckwith operated a "photographic parlor and art studio" at the corner of West 25th Street and Detroit.)

In 1898, the hospital moved across the Circle and purchased the Marcus Hanna mansion at 2603 Franklin Boulevard. Hanna was the man who engineered William McKinley's successful 1896 presidential campaign and, as a result, became known as a political king maker. His mansion had been built in 1869 on land deeded to his wife by her father, Daniel P. Rhodes. A wealthy west side industrialist, Rhodes lived next door on the southeast side of the Circle at 2609 Franklin. Hanna and his family lived in their mansion on Franklin from 1868 until 1890. (In the latter year, they moved to the far west side into a new mansion at 10400 Lake Avenue, The area would later become known as Cleveland's Edgewater neighborhood.)

In 1922, Lutheran Hospital razed the Hanna Mansion (and the Warmington mansion east of it) and built in their place its first hospital building. In 1948, the hospital expanded west, in the process razing Daniel Rhodes' Franklin Circle mansion, which had been serving as the home of St. John's Orphanage since the death of Rhodes' widow Sophia in 1909.

In the decades that followed, Lutheran Hospital expanded its Franklin Boulevard campus an additional number of times, as a result of major projects in the 1960s and 1970s. Now well into its second century of operation, Lutheran Hospital, which became part of the Cleveland Clinic system in 1996, continues to be a large and vibrant institution in Ohio City and continues to have an imposing presence on historic Franklin Circle.

Images

Lutheran Hospital, 1963
Lutheran Hospital, 1963 This photograph shows the new facade of the primary Lutheran Hospital building located at 2609 Franklin Boulevard shortly after it was completed in 1963. Source: Cleveland Public Library, Photograph Collection Date: 1963
The first Lutheran Hospital
The first Lutheran Hospital Lutheran Hospital was founded in 1896. It was initially located on the north side of Franklin Circle at 274 Hanover (West 28th) Street in a house built by M.E. and Margaret Beckwith. Beckwith was one of Cleveland's earliest professional photographers. Source: Raymond L. Pianka
Grand Opening
Grand Opening On October 10, 1896, the above article appeared in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, announcing the opening of new Lutheran Hospital on Franklin Circle. Source: Cleveland State University Library, Special Collections Creator: Cleveland Plain Dealer Date: October 10, 1896
On the Circle
On the Circle This 1896 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map shows the original location of Lutheran Hospital on the northwest side of Franklin Circle between Dexter Place (West 29th Street) and Hanover (West 28th) Street. The building identified as "German Hospital" is the location of the original Lutheran Hospital. German Hospital was a predecessor hospital on the site that, in 1896, moved to a new location on Franklin just east of the Kentucky Street Reservoir. Source: Cleveland State University Library, Special Collections Date: 1896
Daniel P. Rhodes Mansion
Daniel P. Rhodes Mansion This undated photograph shows the Daniel P. Rhodes Mansion at 2609 Franklin Boulevard facing south on the north side of Franklin Circle. Rhodes was one of the West Side's pioneer industrialists. The Rhodes mansion was razed by Lutheran Hospital in the 1940s as part of a hospital expansion project. Source: Raymond L. Pianka
Moving into the Hanna House
Moving into the Hanna House This 1912-1913 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map shows the location and footprint of the Marcus Hanna mansion (outlined in red) on Franklin Circle. Lutheran Hospital purchased the Hanna mansion in 1898 and it served as the hospital's main facility for the next 23 years. In 1921, Lutheran Hospital razed the Hanna mansion, as well as the Warmington mansion next door to it, in order to build in their place its first modern hospital building . Source: Cleveland State University Library, Special Collections Date: 1913
Setting a Cornerstone
Setting a Cornerstone In 1937, Lutheran Hospital built a new facility on Franklin Avenue which served as both a school and residence for nurses. Shown in this photograph are H.E. Klefman, then President of the Board of Directors of Lutheran Hospital, and L. Winifred Bowers, Superintendent of Nurses. Source: Cleveland State University Library, Special Collections Date: 1937
Peoples Savings and Loan Building
Peoples Savings and Loan Building This photograph shows the buildings on the south side of Franklin Boulevard as seen from West 25th street in 1942. The building on the corner is the Peoples Savings and Loan Building, one of the earliest banks on the west side of Cleveland. Its first president was west side industrialist Daniel P. Rhodes. The Peoples Savings and Loan Building, which later became the home of a branch of Cleveland Trust, was razed by Lutheran Hospital. The lot where the bank stood became a Lutheran Hospital parking lot. Source: Cleveland Public Library, Photograph Collection Date: 1942
Modernizing the Hospital
Modernizing the Hospital This 1960 photograph shows the President of the Lutheran Hospital Association (left) discussing plans for an expansion of the Franklin Avenue building with the Chairman of the Cleveland Hospital Council (right). The project was built and completed in 1963. Source: Cleveland State University Library, Special Collections Date: 1960
The Franklin House
The Franklin House This small red brick building located on the north side of Franklin Boulevard across the street from Lutheran Hospital's main hospital building is one of the few historic buildings in the Franklin Circle area that was preserved by Lutheran Hospital as the hospital grew and expanded its campus over the last 116 years. According to newspaper accounts, the Franklin House was constructed in circa 1854 and originally served as the fire house for the Ohio City volunteer fire brigade. Later, it became the carriage house and stable for the Daniel P. Rhodes estate. The building was moved to its current location in 1978. Creator: Jim Dubelko

Location

1730 W 25th St, Cleveland, OH 44113

Metadata

Jim Dubelko, “Lutheran Hospital,” Cleveland Historical, accessed April 18, 2024, https://clevelandhistorical.org/index.php/items/show/540.