Iconic Architecture

Cleveland offers a stunning array of architectural gems by renowned architects. From 1930 until 1967, the Terminal Tower was the tallest skyscraper in the world outside New York City. It also connected via rapid transit to Shaker Heights, an internationally recognized garden city that still evokes the opulence of the Roaring Twenties. In Downtown you’ll discover three European-style shopping arcades, an Art Deco bridge featuring four iconic “Guardians of Transportation,” and one of the nation’s most complete expressions of the classically inspired “City Beautiful” movement. From a monument to a fallen U.S. President to a reputedly haunted “castle,” Cleveland is steeped in architectural history.

Although today the first sign of downtown that a motorist is sure to spot from any direction is the Key Tower, prior to its completion in the early 1990s the first sight was the Terminal Tower. Despite its eclipse by a later, taller skyscraper, the 52-story, 708-foot-tall Terminal Tower was an…
View Story | Show on Map

In the summer of 1886, former councilman and real estate broker James M. Curtiss met with acting Cleveland Parks superintendent and Case School of Applied Sciences professor John Eisenmann to express enthusiasm about a novel form of enclosed street called an arcade. After having visited an arcade…
View Story | Show on Map

When the city approved the Group Plan of 1903, it was believed that the Mall would become the city’s functional and symbolic center. The long stretch of land northeast of Public Square would turn a former slum into a parklike space, and a half-dozen neoclassical government buildings surrounding the…
View Story | Show on Map

The Cleveland Public Library comprises one of the largest collections in the United States: nearly ten million items. The Library’s two buildings on Superior Avenue (the main structure, 1925) and the Stokes Wing (1997) command an entire city block between East 3rd and East 6th Streets. The…
View Story | Show on Map

In the days of horse-drawn carriages and booming industry, one street in Cleveland showcased the elite among the city's citizens. Millionaires' Row, a length of Euclid Avenue, was where prominent figures such as John D. Rockefeller, Marcus Hanna, and Charles F. Brush built their mansions.…
View Story | Show on Map

On May 30, 1893, patriotic melodies of the Grand Army Band of Canton could be heard coming from the corner of Bolivar Street and Prospect Avenue as an exciting celebration was taking place - the laying of the new Grays Armory cornerstone. Grays Armory was to be the new location of weaponry and…
View Story | Show on Map

On February 15, 1861, the streets surrounding the Weddell House, as well as the windows, porches and even rooftops that looked upon the hotel, were dense with faces eager to see the newly elected president, Abraham Lincoln. Once inside his overnight lodgings on the corner of Superior Avenue and…
View Story | Show on Map

The High Victorian Eclectic style stone house located on the north side of Franklin Boulevard across from West 44th Street is still known to many Clevelanders as "Franklin Castle." The home has been a witness to much of the history of Cleveland's west side in the 125 years of its…
View Story | Show on Map

The Shrine Church of Saint Stanislaus is dedicated to St. Stanislaus, the bishop, martyr, and patron of Poland. It represents the history of the Polish community in Cleveland, Ohio since the mid 1800s. Cleveland's Bishop asked the Pastor of St. Adalbert in Berea to 'gather and care'…
View Story | Show on Map

St. Theodosius Russian Orthodox Cathedral opened in 1913 and cost approximately $70,000 to construct. Most of the land-acquisition and building funds came from parishioners. However, it is believed that Russia's Czar Nicholas II–the one whose entire family was murdered during the Revolution of…
View Story | Show on Map

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 his family out of poverty. His first job--working…
View Story | Show on Map