On August 13, 1970, the Cleveland Plain Dealer provided a chilling exposé on Cleveland's deteriorating air quality. The article ruthlessly reported, "To the casual observer – the stranger to the neighborhood – it was alarming; the odor stuck in…

In 1921, Harvard University's Dean Roscoe Pound and Professor Felix Frankfurter--a future United States Supreme Court Justice--issued a report containing a scathing indictment on the condition of criminal justice in Cleveland, particularly in…

In 1910, Daniel Rhodes Hanna, a wealthy industrialist and son of legendary political kingmaker Marcus Hanna, bought the Cleveland Leader, an historic, but struggling, daily newspaper. The Leader's offices were at the time located in a small two-story…

The southeast anchor of Cleveland’s most prominent downtown intersection is a work of art that—in the true spirit of capitalism—began with a competition. In 1903, the Cleveland Trust Company (established in 1894 with $500,000 in capital) merged…

In 1979, the year that Ian Hunter released “Cleveland Rocks,” the Wall Street Journal proclaimed Cleveland the nation’s “Rock and Roll Capital.” The city had earned this reputation through the influence of WJW disc jockey Alan Freed, Record…

Art Modell. The very mention of his name in Cleveland still stirs up vitriol. In 1963 he angered many by firing legendary Cleveland Browns coach Paul Brown, only two years after Art assumed principal ownership of the team. Most was forgiven in 1964…

In 1976, the Cleveland Home and Flower Exposition drew a record crowd of nearly 100,000 persons during its opening weekend.    The annual convention displayed the latest in landscaping techniques, construction materials and methods, and home…

In 1895, Hugo Chotek, a Czech-American journalist who lived in Cleveland, wrote a history of the city's early Bohemian (Czech) community. To learn about the origins of the community's west side settlement, south of the Walworth Run, he interviewed…

You're driving south on West 65th street in your Ford Model T, sometimes called a Tin Lizzie. You pass St. Colman Roman Catholic Church on your left, then the Cleveland Trust bank building on the corner of Lorain Avenue, and just a little later…

In 1886, 69-year old Abraham Teachout, a fierce supporter of the Prohibition movement gave a speech at the party's annual Cuyahoga County convention which he ended with the words: "The saloons must go but I am afraid I will not see the day."…

On August 4, 1946, almost one year after the dropping of atomic bombs on Japan and the end of World War ll, a picket line appeared in front of Cleveland's Euclid Beach amusement park for the first time in its history. Protesting the park's…

On October 3, 1869, one of football's most iconic figures was born in Ohio City. Today he is best known as the namesake of the most prestigious award in college football, the Heisman Memorial Trophy. The trophy is awarded annually to the nation's…

The path followed by the Van Sweringen brothers in developing a rapid transit system led to the creation of a vast railroad empire. While their foray into the railroad business may have begun half-hazard, it was a natural extension of their interests…

James A. Garfield was born on November 19, 1831, in a log cabin in Orange Township. His father passed away when he was only 18 months old, leaving his mother to fend for herself and her family. Garfield started working at an early age to try to keep…

Imagine descending an escalator from Star Plaza and boarding a subway bound for Tower City Center. Mayor Tom Johnson first proposed a Cleveland subway in 1905, and the idea surfaced repeatedly thereafter. After several failed attempts between the…

Amid the busy streets of downtown Cleveland stands the Soldiers and Sailors' Monument, built to honor the 10,000 Cuyahoga county residents who fought in the Civil War. Almost fifteen years after Major William J. Gleason first suggested the idea of…

Born into a wealthy family in 1854, Tom L. Johnson did not originally have political intentions or aspirations. Instead, he started off as an inventor and street railway magnate with holdings in companies in Indianapolis, St. Louis, Missouri,…

He wasn't called "Black Jack" when, in 1912, he married Helen Mulgrew from West 67th Street and the two newly weds moved into a house at 1377 West 69th Street. In 1912, he was Tommy McGinty, and he was one of Cleveland's best featherweight…

The Great Lakes Brewing Company opened in Ohio City in 1988, kick-starting an industry in Cleveland that a few years earlier had appeared to be finished. In 1984, the city's only remaining brewery, C. Schmidt & Sons, closed its doors, becoming the…

The Cleveland Leader dubbed the west side neighborhood near Herman Avenue and West 74th Street "Kilbane Town," in honor of world featherweight boxing champion Johnny Kilbane. In March 1912, Kilbane Town was the end point of one of the longest and…

When people think of the auto industry, they usually think of Henry Ford and Detroit. What most people don't know is that in the 1890s Cleveland was the automobile capital of America. One reason for this was a Scottish immigrant and bicycle company…

R. Guy Cowan opened Cowan Pottery on Nicholson Avenue in Lakewood in 1912. The studio produced mainly architectural tiles, but also made a line of vases and bowls called "Lakewood Ware." Work from this period can be found in the East Cleveland Public…

On December 18, 1960, Kundtz Castle was seen by the public for the last time. In 1960 the Eggleston Development Co. paid $110,000 for the property, and in 1961 the company tore the mansion down to build 16 custom homes and Kirtland Lane. Built by…

Cedar Fairmount--the residential and commercial neighborhood where eastbound Cedar Road forks into Cedar to the left and Fairmount to the right--emerged as the "gateway to the Heights" as early as 1918 when the Tudor-style Heights Center Building…

Before it became Cain Park, the ravine between Taylor and Lee roads was merely a wet, overgrown gully visited by only the most adventurous of hikers. In 1914, the Central Improvement Association of Cleveland Heights (then still a village) formed a…

The National Air Races finally came to Cleveland Municipal (now Hopkins) Airport in 1929. Local businessmen Louis W. Greve and Frederick C. Crawford played a big role in bringing the event to Cleveland. Both men were involved in the aviation…

The demolition of Cleveland Municipal Stadium officially began in November 1996 and was complete by the following spring. In the fall of 1995, Cleveland Browns owner Art Modell decided to move the city's football team to Baltimore. Angry fans began…

Located at the intersection of W. 65th Street and Detroit Avenue, Gordon Square is the historic commercial district of the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood. As residential construction and industry grew along and away from Detroit Avenue following the…

With the opening of Wade Park in 1882 and then Gordon Park some ten years later, the Doan Brook valley on Cleveland's east side was turning into a picturesque stretch of public parks as the 19th century came to a close. On July 22, 1896, during a…

Forest Hill was once the sweeping estate of oil baron John D. Rockefeller. Originally from a small town near the Finger Lakes in upstate New York, Rockefeller purchased the land along Euclid Avenue as a commercial venture in 1873, opening (along with…