In 1913, a Van Sweringen “Group Plan” was beginning to take form in the young village of Shaker Heights. Construction of a stately grammar school on Southington Road was nearing completion.  Borrowing from the neighboring City of Cleveland’s…

Convening in Chelton Park during the first week of August, 2016, bands of volunteers joined artists Gary Williams and Robin Robinson to take part in the final stage of a community art endeavor that aspired to beautify the public space. A bleak…

In November, 1970, officers of Shaker-Lee Synagogue presented an $11,500 gift to the Jewish Welfare Fund Appeal for donation to the Israel Emergency Fund.  The substantial gift fulfilled a pledge made by the congregation to its recently deceased…

On July 29, 1951, more than 500 guests of Temple Beth-El convened at the Hotel Hollenden ballroom in downtown Cleveland to witness the dedication of the congregation’s Sefer Torah. Speakers at the ceremony included Rabbi David L. Genuth of Temple…

Will all Cleveland-raised residents who have never visited Squire’s Castle please raise your hands! Not too many? We thought so. After all, Squire’s Castle isn’t just one of the Cleveland area’s most picturesque locations; for generations it’s also…

The Van Sweringen brothers knew that a premier suburb required a premier public school system. So, it was not surprising that, in 1913, just one year after the incorporation of Shaker Heights, its Board of Education began implementing the Vans'…

The history of commercial activity at the intersection of Chagrin Boulevard and Lee Road goes back more than 150 years to when the area was still part of Warrensville Township. In or about 1866, at the northeast corner of the intersection--where…

On November 1, 1970, Reverend George Ramon Castillo and his wife were received into the membership of East View United Church of Christ. The ceremony marked the occasion of Reverend Castillo being installed as the first Black pastor of a Shaker…

As you drive east on Kinsman Road today through Cleveland's Mount Pleasant neighborhood and approach East 154th Street, you come upon and notice it--almost before you notice anything else. You see it before you see that Kinsman Road has now become…

A brick building stands askew from the right-angled corner of Euclid Avenue and East 75th Street. This building is the Cleveland mosque Masjid Bilal, which was built to face Mecca in Saudi Arabia. Masjid Bilal takes its name from the Arabic word for…

Benjamin McClane Spock (1903-1998) was born to an upper-class Connecticut family. He attended private schools and Ivy League colleges, along the way capturing a gold medal in rowing for his Yale team in the 1924 Olympics. He graduated first in his…

Visitors to University Circle are often struck by the area’s grandeur. Magnificent museums. Huge hospital systems. A sprawling college campus interspersed with innovative new structures, iconic old buildings and well-preserved mansions. Yet…

Derrell Max Ellis (later known simply as Max Ellis) was born on March 10, 1914, in Wellington, Kansas. The youngest of four children, Max grew up in Iowa and studied theater at the University of Iowa, performing in plays in the 1930s written by…

The Hanna Building was named after the famous U.S. senator from Ohio and oil and coal baron Marcus Alonzo Hanna and built by his son Daniel Rhodes Hanna. Hanna is perhaps best known for having endorsed William McKinley for president in 1896, spending…

More than century before Elon Musk's Tesla Roadster was launched into space, the first crude electric carriage was produced by the Scottish inventor Robert Anderson in 1832. In 1891 the first successful electric automobile in the United States was…

“Entering Apartheid Shaker: Home of Barricades” was the message commuters read as they drove under a large banner while entering Shaker Heights along the Cleveland border in September of 1990. The banner was put up by Cleveland city councilman…

On September 15, 1964, the Beatles descended upon Cleveland Public Hall. A horde of approximately 11,000 screaming fans piled into Cleveland Public Hall to see the Fab Four perform their particular brand of musical magic. At first glance, the aging…

The son of Dewitt and Sarah Dimmick Drury, Francis Edson Drury was born on August 20, 1850, in Pittsfield, Michigan. After receiving a public-school education, he entered the hardware business where he invented the first internal gear lawnmower.…

Did you know that Abraham Lincoln visited Bedford, Ohio, via train? In February of 1861, the president-elect journeyed through Bedford on the Cleveland and Pittsburgh Railroad (C&P) while on his way from Springfield, Illinois, his hometown, to…

The Colonial Hotel, now called the Residence Inn, is located on Prospect Avenue next to Cleveland’s historic East 4th Street. The hotel was built in 1898 in combination with the Colonial Arcade by designer George H. Smith, who was also the architect…

Thousands of stories emanated from the venerable Hollenden Hotel. This hotel, located in downtown Cleveland on Superior, Bond, and Vincent Streets, was considered one of the city's most luxurious hotels. It attracted many diverse people, including…

Extending four miles along Euclid Avenue between Public Square and East 105th Street, Millionaires’ Row stood as an unbroken row of stone, brick, and shingle-sided extravagance of more than 300 mansions. One of these grand homes belonged to the…

If you walk down the north side of Euclid Avenue today, between East 9th and East 12th Streets, you can't help but notice the several dilapidated and vacant buildings between the 925 Building (formerly known as the Huntington Building, and before…

Though he has been called America’s first neurosurgeon, Dr. Harvey W. Cushing was not the first American to perform brain surgery. Others did before him, piercing the dura which encases the brain in order to attempt to remove tumors, but the results…

Gathering at the Lincoln Statue in front of the Board of Education building, members of WELCOME (West-East Siders Let’s Come Together) rallied to promote a safe and peaceful start of busing to achieve racial balance in the Cleveland Schools. The…

For 30 years the beautiful red brick and terra cotta Schofield Building lay hidden underneath under a gray sequoia granite façade. In an effort to modernize the Schofield Building, part of Cleveland’s history had been buried. Luckily, historic…

The Mayfield Triangle: The former street address 11339 Mayfield Road is now 11400 Euclid Avenue. And although official street numbering changes over the years for one reason or another (zoning requirements, city planning, urban renewal, or real…

As you look around Cleveland – attuned to the city's built landscape – you may not know it, but you are looking at many structures designed by the renowned architect Charles Frederick Schweinfurth. He envisioned the most expensive private residence,…

Train Avenue on the west side of Cleveland is undoubtedly so named because it follows the tracks of the Big Four Railroad in a northeasterly direction from the old Stockyards near Clark Avenue and West 61st Street almost all the way to the Cuyahoga…