The freeway revolts were a phenomenon that took place across the nation during the 1960s and 1970s. The revolts were in response to the many freeway routes that were proposed without due consideration for the neighborhoods that would be demolished, or the people who would be displaced.
In Cleveland, the battle centered around the proposed Clark, Lee, and Heights Freeways. The proposed routes would have partitioned Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights, costing houses and businesses and affecting a nature preserve, the Shaker Lakes. The residents of these suburbs banned together, and fought the proposed freeways and the county engineer Albert S. Porter, and Governor James Rhodes to a standstill.
Today, instead of an interchange of two freeways, the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes is used by the residents of both Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights, to teach environmental education.
We present 17 route location studies, including the proposed routes for the Clark, Lee and Heights freeways that were never built, as well as the original study that started it all in 1955.
Inspired by the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, the Cleveland Group Plan was the embodiment of the City Beautiful Movement. Grounded in the ideals of Beaux Arts Architecture, the plan called for Beaux Arts style buildings with Neoclassical details* to be arranged around a central Mall.
The Group Plan Commission, consisting of Daniel H. Burnham, Arnold W. Brunner, and John M. Carrere worked together for one year in an office in New York City to come up with the final design, which they presented to Mayor Tom Johnson as The Group Plan of the Public Buildings of the City of Cleveland.
The Group Plan of Cleveland is the earliest and the most fully realized plan for a major city outside of Washington, D.C. and remains one of the best extant examples of the City Beautiful Movement.
*Per a phone conversation on April 29, 2009 with Mr. D.H. Ellison, Architect of the D.H. Ellison Co.
Stephen Gage, Whitney Foster, and Lynn M. Duchez Bycko
The Wheeling and Lake Erie Railroad (WLE) was founded in 1871 and it was originally designed to span the distance from the Ohio River through the coal fields of southeastern Ohio to the ports on Lake Erie. Over several decades the WLE would grow through construction and mergers into a significant transport feed to Cleveland’s growing industries, mainly freighting coal. In the beginning, however, only 13.5 miles of track had been laid by 1887, and the railroad was jokingly called the "Wailing and Leg Weary."
After several early financial embarrassments, including a complete shutdown in 1879, Jay Gould, an American financier who became a leading American railroad developer and speculator, began buying large amounts of Wheeling’s stock the following year. With the fresh influx of funding, construction resumed.
Containing over one thousand photos in many different sizes and dating from 1863 to 1962, these photos are housed in 18 archival file boxes. Included with the photographs is a registry which lists the location of many assets by division and branch. This collection originally served to document railroad property, as the Interstate Commerce Commission mandated that all U.S. railroads photograph all assets, including equipment, motive power, towers, bridges and more. The purpose of this was to levy taxes on these items to be paid to the government. The Michael Schwartz Library purchased the Wheeling and Lake Erie photographs in 2000 from a collector.
William G. Becker
In 1922 the New York, Chicago, & St. Louis Railway (Nickel Plate Railway or NKP) took a series of photographs along its right-of-way and adjacent neighborhoods from Euclid through the west side of Cleveland.
In 1926 the Nickel Plate took a second series of photographs. These documented the original conditions of the right-of-way and the adjacent neighborhood for a grade elimination project that was undertaken as part of the Cleveland Union Terminal construction project.
William G. Becker
Cleveland State University is a comprehensive, urban university located in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. It was established in 1964 as a state-assisted university to provide public higher education for citizens of greater Cleveland and northeast Ohio. In its first year, the University acquired the buildings, faculty, staff and programs of Fenn College, a private institution of 2,500 students, and in 1969 the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law became part of CSU.
Nearly 2,000 images from the the Cuyahoga County Engineer's Office, documenting Engineer's Office projects to install and maintain the civil infrastructure.
For some 70 years, the Cuyahoga County Engineer's Office maintained a small photographic department, which it used to document aspects of the Engineer's Office projects. When that department was closed in 1999, the prints and negatives were transferred to the Cuyahoga County Archives. In 2002 the Cleveland State University Library contracted with the County Commissioners to examine this material and selected approximately 1,200 of these images to make available online via Cleveland Memory. Since then, more photos have been digitized to bring the total up to nearly 2,000 images.
The King Iron Bridge Co. played an important role in the development and construction of metal truss bridges, a product of American engineering and construction technology, nationwide during the later part of the Nineteenth Century. The King Iron Bridge & Manufacturing Co. was organized under that name in Cleveland in 1871 by Zenas King, who had started his career in building bridges in 1858. King came to Cleveland from Cincinnati around 1861, and by 1865 had established his works on Wason (East 38th St.) between St. Clair and Hamilton Avenue. The Company moved to a larger plant on Ruskin Ave.(East 69th St.) around 1888.
The Company's business at first was confined to manufacturing iron arch and swing bridges. By 1878 it was building all types of truss, combination, and wooden bridges, including King's patented tubular arch, as well as iron roof trusses, fencing, and jail cells. During the 1880's the Company was the largest highway bridge works in the country, having built bridges in Topeka, KA., Santa Rosa, CA., Binghamton, NY., Bowling Green, KY., Ft. Laramie, WY., and Macon, Ga.
Upon King's death in 1892, the Company's name was changed to the King Bridge Company. The Company built bridges in Cleveland that include the Central Viaduct in 1888; the Center Street swing bridge in 1901, Cleveland's last remaining swing bridge; and the 591 ft. steel arch of the Detroit-Superior (Veteran's Memorial) bridge in 1918. The Company disbanded in the 1920s.
In March of 1983, Dr. Sara Ruth Watson, a former Professor of English and Engineering at Fenn College, donated a large collection of rare books and fifteen albums of photographs, all on historic bridges, to the Michael Schwartz Library at Cleveland State University where they now reside as part of the Library's special collections.
The collection was begun by Dr. Watson's father, Wilbur J. Watson, a distinguished civil engineer and bridge designer who from his student days at Western Reserve University collected books on bridges and continued this interest during a long professional career. He founded the Watson Engineering Company in Cleveland, developed some important early concrete standards and authored several books, one with his daughters Sara Ruth and Emily.
Dr. Sara Ruth Watson initiated, and from 1940 to 1970, taught a pioneer course in the History of Civil Engineering. She continued and expanded her father's collection. In October 1986, after the death of her sister, Dr. Watson established the Emily M. Watson Endowment Fund for the maintenance and acquisition of books and periodicals to the Watson Bridge Book Collection, which have as their primary focus the history of civil engineering with a special emphasis on bridges. Dr. Sara Ruth Watson left a bequest in 1996 to further support the Watson Bridge Book Collection.
William G. Becker
The Cleveland Union Terminal Collection is the archives of the company that built the Terminal Tower, the union passenger station, the complex of office buildings, post office, department store and the infrastructure of tracks, bridges, signals, electrical catenary structures and yard facility buildings necessary to switch passenger coaches over from steam to electric and bring them in to the downtown area. This was a massive urban redevelopment project that foreshadowed the Rockefeller Center, in New York; gave Cleveland the third-tallest building in the world in 1930; and forever changed the face of Public Square and wide swaths of adjoining neighborhoods.
This lavish viewbook and brief history of Cleveland, published in 1889 by H.R. Page & Co., was donated to the University Library's Special Collections by long-time friend and benefactor John Horton.
Cleveland Illustrated represented a double milestone for Cleveland Memory and the Cleveland State University Library back in 2003. The book, itself, was the 2-millionth resource added to the Cleveland State University Library and the 135 images from this book pushed the Cleveland Memory Project over the 10,000-image mark.
Jeanne Figueira Grossetti, Jonathan Hodges, Jonetha K. Jackson, and Tanya Tahsler
Historic photographs and other images, maps, and period advertisements offer a glimpse into canal era life in Ohio.