Cleveland Heights Landmarks

Elizabeth Keyes Churchill House

One of the first residences constructed in what became the Ambler Heights allotment, the Elizabeth Keys Churchill house is set far back from Chestnut Hills Drive and likely slightly older than that street.

The house is up the hill from Cedar Glen Parkway. Its original entrance faced the glen, but a reconfiguration of the rooms changed it to facing the street, though set far back from it.

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Volume 10, Issue 10, Posted 1:46 PM, 09.29.2017

St. Ann Church Group

The buildings of St. Ann Parish, which were landmarked by the city of Cleveland Heights in 1975, became Communion of Saints Parish in 2010. This group of buildings, each one a different architectural style, includes the school, hall, rectory and church. Both the history of the parish and the styles of architecture contribute to the significance of these properties.

In 1915, the Diocese of Cleveland established a church in Cleveland Heights for about 40 families, and appointed Father John Powers to serve the community.

After finding a suitable location at the top of the streetcar line, Powers had a wooden church constructed at the corner of Cedar and Coventry roads. It was his goal to establish an elementary school, high school and college on the campus. Powers began his mission of constructing the elementary school immediately.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 2:55 PM, 08.31.2017

New Spirit Revival Center

For most of its life, the building at 3130 Mayfield Road was Temple on the Heights (aka Temple B’nai Jeshurun), a Conservative Jewish congregation, and one of the two earliest synagogues to be situated in a Cleveland suburb.

Indeed, B’nai Jeshurun marked the first stage of Jewish community migration away from the city.

Recognized for its 12-sided central dome, the building features a multi-faceted red tile roof and two-and-a-half story arcaded entry loggia, beautifully accenting the eclectic building which shows both Byzantine and Romanesque influences. 

 

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 10:53 AM, 08.07.2017

Ambler Heights Historic District

Ambler Heights, for many decades unofficially known as the neighborhood of Chestnut Hills, is one of Cleveland Heights’ first developments, as well as one of the first Cleveland Heights neighborhoods nominated to the National Register of Historic Places as an historic district.

The tract was named for Dr. Nathan Hardy Ambler, a dentist who became a real estate developer. Comprising five streets, Ambler Heights—part of which is in the city of Cleveland—includes more than 60 large, architect-designed homes, built from the 1890s through the 2010s.

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Volume 10, Issue 7, Posted 12:24 PM, 06.29.2017

Euclid Golf Historic District

The Euclid Golf Historic District—on the National Register of Historic Places—is one of Cleveland Heights’ older suburban developments. It was created on land that belonged to John D. Rockefeller and leased to the Euclid Club. Its majestic Tudor Revival clubhouse, which stood for about a decade only, was situated approximately where Cedar Road meets Norfolk Road today. The historic district, centered on Fairmount Boulevard between Cedar and Coventry roads, includes the Fairmount Boulevard Historic District.

Barton R. Deming began developing the Euclid Golf district in 1914. His own house is the picturesque European-looking structure set in the hillside at the beginning of Fairmount Boulevard at Cedar Road.

The styles of the residences seen in Euclid Golf—which is primarily residential with the exception of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church and the commercial building along Fairmount Boulevard within the Cedar Fairmount district—are mainly of Tudor Revival, Georgian Revival, English Colonial and French Norman design. The streets off of Fairmount contain less expensive yet stylish homes.

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Volume 10, Issue 6, Posted 1:32 PM, 05.31.2017

Lanphear-Callender Sears House

Constructed in 1924, the home at 3402 Ormond Road is a fine example of a Sears Catalog Home known as the Ardara model. The Ardara was one of approximately 400 different styles of homes that Sears offered between 1908 and 1940. The Ardara was a five-room bungalow, though the Ormond version is larger. The model appeared by 1919, and was a very early design to feature a front-facing attached garage. Craftsman-style details are evident in the front door, windows and arched front portico.

The mail-order Sears kit homes typically arrived by railroad car. The new homeowners often constructed their own homes with the help of family, friends and neighbors. Sears homes can often be identified by the numbered markings on the lumber, and the special hardware that accompanied each model.

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Volume 10, Issue 3, Posted 3:23 PM, 02.28.2017

Forest Hill Historic District

The Forest Hill Historic District spans the cities of Cleveland Heights and East Cleveland and comprises the Rockefeller homes, the Forest Hill Homeowner Association cottage, the Heights Rockefeller Building and Forest Hill Park.

In 1923, John D. Rockefeller Jr. purchased the estate of his famous father, John D. Rockefeller Sr., and began working with New York architect Andrew J. Thomas to develop a unique residential community featuring nine styles of French Norman homes constructed of the finest materials. At that time, Rockefeller Jr. also donated the land for Forest Hill Park to the cities of Cleveland Heights and East Cleveland and sold other Rockefeller land to the Deming brothers, residential developers in Cleveland Heights.

To market the homes and facilitate sales, Rockefeller established the Abeyton Realty Corporation, named after his wife, Abby.

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Volume 9, Issue 10, Posted 11:10 AM, 09.30.2016

Grace Lutheran Church

Perhaps best known by passers-by for the shimmering glow of its ornate golden window tracery set in warm, earth-toned brick, the former Grace Lutheran Church has meticulously matching wings set slightly above Cedar Road.

In some ways this mainly brick church structure, in the English Gothic style, was designed as a smaller and less complex version of John W.C. Corbusier’s other Cleveland Heights church—the stone Church of the Saviour. Corbusier was a specialist in church design, as well as a graduate of E'ole des Beaux-Arts in Paris.

The former sanctuary’s interior is notable for its fine woodcarving and stained glass.

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Volume 9, Issue 9, Posted 11:23 AM, 09.01.2016

The Adams-Long House

Nestled off of a cul-de-sac, the Adams-Long house at 3555 Birch Tree Path sits on a parcel of land that was once part of the Elisabeth Allen Prentiss estate, Glen Allen. The Adams-Long house is the only building from that grand estate to have survived. Built in 1860 for the Adams family, the structure was later incorporated into the estate, and was likely used as a worker’s cottage. 

The house has undergone multiple additions and transformations to make it a viable 21st-century home. Current owner Bruce Long has lived in the house since 1956. He was unaware of the history of the home prior to purchasing it. Afterward, he learned of its unique history and was honored to have the home landmarked by Cleveland Heights in 1984.

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Volume 9, Issue 8, Posted 6:20 PM, 07.28.2016

Forest Hill Park

Forest Hill Park is a diamond in the rough. Its National Register of Historic Places designation calls attention to its historic merit, but does not guarantee its preservation. Its upkeep has been a challenge for years, in part because more than half of its acreage is in East Cleveland, a struggling municipality with virtually no budget for maintenance.

Designed by Cleveland Heights native A. D. Taylor, the park reflects the landscape architect’s prior work in the firm of Warren H. Manning, who worked with Frederick Law Olmsted, the father of American landscape architecture.

Taylor had a hand in designing several Cincinnati parks and the grounds of several notable estates, including Stan Hywet in Akron. Taylor’s Forest Hill Park plan included a number of Olmstedian nods: inward-looking vistas framed by wooded fringes, curvilinear lanes that lent a pastoral effect, a picturesque lagoon and boathouse, and a stone footbridge spanning a valley traversed by a parkway.

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Volume 9, Issue 5, Posted 8:10 PM, 04.29.2016

Overlook Condominiums

Built as El Canon Apartments in 1916, and later renamed Overlook Place Condominiums, the iconic Prairie School multi-family building at 2577 Overlook Road matches the scale if not the architecture of a street dominated by grand apartments.

El Canon and its neighbors appeared in the wake of Euclid Heights developer Patrick Calhoun’s failure to fulfill his vision of building an affluent allotment of large single-family homes. Succumbing to financial hardship in 1914, Calhoun saw hundreds of unsold lots go on auction. This watershed moment enabled the eclectic neighborhood we know today, with its mixture of single- and multi-family residences, and commercial buildings. 

El Canon conjures Spanish associations, mirroring a trend of popular affection for Mediterranean imagery in the early 20th century, but its name is also an exotic extrapolation of a more pedestrian origin. Its developer, after all, was a man named Edson L. Cannon.

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Volume 9, Issue 2, Posted 11:38 AM, 01.29.2016

The Liberty Oaks

North Park Boulevard between Coventry Road and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive is popular with commuters heading into Cleveland. There are no stoplights on this stretch of road, allowing drivers to quickly get to the hill that descends from the Heights down into University Circle. Even at 35 mph, it’s easy to notice the tall oak trees that line the south side of North Park Boulevard. To see the nearly 100-year-old pieces of history that lie at the base of a number of these trees, however, one must exit the car and take a closer look to find the cement stones with little bronze plates, each bearing an individual man’s name. Who are these men, and why are they being honored on the side of a busy road in Cleveland Heights?

Following the armistice that ended World War I on Nov. 11, 1918, American Legion posts, garden clubs, schoolchildren, communities and families around the country planted trees to honor fallen soldiers.

In an August 1918 issue of American Forestry, editor Percival Sheldon Ridsdale praised the concept of “trees for the dead,” stating that the fallen soldiers “are to have living monuments.

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Volume 8, Issue 12, Posted 10:25 AM, 12.01.2015

The Nutt House and Carriage House

The Joseph R. and Elizabeth Nutt House and Carriage House, which later became St. Ann Convent, was landmarked in 2003. This massive English manor, located at 2285 Coventry Road, was built in 1910 for Joseph R. Nutt, vice president and director of Citizens Savings and Trust Company, and a vice president of the Union Trust Company.

Local architect Harlan E. Shimmin designed the house. Shimmin was a prolific residential architect who designed many structures that have been landmarked throughout Cleveland Heights and Shaker Heights.

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Volume 8, Issue 10, Posted 1:26 PM, 09.30.2015

Grant Deming's Forest Hill Historic District

For most of its history, Grant Deming’s Forest Hill Historic District was a neighborhood in search of its own identity. Developed more than a century ago as the Forest Hill Allotment, to evoke images of John D. Rockefeller’s summer estate of the same name, the neighborhood gradually lost its name. Once fully developed, it no longer appeared in newspaper advertisements. Then, after John D. Rockefeller Jr.’s land along the East Cleveland border was laid out as another Forest Hill in the late 1920s, the original Forest Hill neighborhood became a place identified primarily in relation to nearby areas. 

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Volume 8, Issue 9, Posted 10:48 PM, 08.31.2015

William R. Jeavons House

The William R. Jeavons House at 2541 Arlington Road was built in 1910 and became a Cleveland Heights Landmark in 2000. Designed by prominent Cleveland architect Harlen E. Shimmin, the imposing beige brick home sits on a two-acre corner lot at the confluence of Arlington and Monmouth roads in the Shaker Farm Historic District.

Originally the core of the Van Sweringen brothers’ Shaker Village development, before the majority of it took shape in the city of Shaker Heights to the south, Fairmount Boulevard and the winding streets to either side, including Arlington, [featured] some of the most opulent homes in the emerging suburbs—so much so that Fairmount Boulevard was even called the Euclid Avenue of the Heights.

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Volume 8, Issue 7, Posted 2:01 PM, 06.29.2015

Alcazar Hotel

In the 1920s, Spanish and other Mediterranean architectural styles permeated American design. As Michael Rotman, Cleveland Heights Historical Society’s executive director, discovered, Shaker Heights architect Bloodgood Tuttle, like his clients the Van Sweringens, disapproved of Italian- and Spanish-style houses being built in Cleveland. Tuttle declared them “better left in Florida and California” because “they are intended to keep out the sun while we want to let it in.”

If Mediterranean styles were better suited to the nation’s semitropical margins, they nonetheless crept into Northeast Ohio. The Alcazar Hotel, a designated Cleveland Heights Landmark property since 1978, is among the region’s most notable Mediterranean-influenced buildings.

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Volume 8, Issue 6, Posted 1:38 PM, 05.29.2015

St. Paul's Episcopal Church

One of five properties added to Cleveland Heights’s Landmark registry in 1976, just two years after its inception, the St. Paul's Episcopal Church Group is a familiar presence at the intersection of Coventry Road and Fairmount Boulevard. 

St. Paul’s congregation, like that of many longtime congregations, predates its current home. It emerged in 1846, occupying rented space until its first dedicated building opened two years later at the corner of Sheriff Street (now East 4th) and Euclid Avenue, on the site of the present-day Corner Alley Bowling Lanes.

Following a devastating fire, the church rebuilt a brick Gothic edifice that opened in 1849. As commercial expansion accompanied the emergence of downtown Cleveland in what had formerly been a compact walking city, St. Paul's moved in 1876 to a newly built Gothic church at the corner of Case Street (now East 40th) and Euclid, eventually bordering Cleveland's famed Millionaires' Row. This church was designed by Gordon W. Lloyd, an English-born Detroit architect who also designed many other Episcopal churches in the Midwest. At its new location, St. Paul's expanded impressively and spawned several other new congregations as it grew.

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Volume 8, Issue 5, Posted 8:44 AM, 05.01.2015

Coventry Village Library

Harry Potter and his friends would feel right at home in the Coventry Village Library, a brick Tudor Revival- and Jacobean-style building that sits on a grassy slope at the corner of Coventry Road and Euclid Heights Boulevard. Designated a Cleveland Heights Landmark in 1980, the building features many historical details, including a large fireplace, Arts and Crafts tilework, and medieval-style light fixtures.

Designed by John H. Graham & Co., Architects, who had drawn plans for Fairmount Presbyterian Church and three buildings for the Laurel School nearly a decade before, the Coventry Village Library opened as the main library for Cleveland Heights in 1926. Built on land originally platted as part of Grant W. Deming's Forest Hill residential allotment, the library, along with Coventry School, were the only nonresidential structures in Deming's development.

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Volume 8, Issue 4, Posted 1:03 PM, 03.30.2015

Christ Our Redeemer A.M.E. Church

In the summer of 1981, the choirs of St. John's and St. James A.M.E. churches, two historic African-American congregations on Cleveland's East Side, joined together in the octagonal sanctuary at the inaugural service of Christ Our Redeemer A.M.E. Church. Named after the African Methodist Episcopal motto, "God our Father, Christ our Redeemer, and Man our Brother," this sacred landmark was originally dedicated as Cleveland Heights Methodist Episcopal Church on Sept. 18, 1904. The clapboard- and shingle-sided Gothic Eclectic building, distinguished by its rare (for its time) octagonal sanctuary plan and battlemented corner tower overlooking Superior and Hampshire roads, is the oldest standing house of worship in Cleveland Heights, and has been a designated Cleveland Heights Landmark since 1995.

Cleveland Heights Methodist Episcopal Church arose from efforts of the Nottingham-Glenville Circuit of the Methodist Church, which erected an earlier brick church near the old Superior Schoolhouse, in 1878. At that time the surrounding area was still derisively dubbed "Heathen Heights" because of the notorious weekend carousing of the area's stone quarry workers.

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Volume 8, Issue 3, Posted 2:43 PM, 02.26.2015