Cleveland October 16, 2018
10 Historic Places In Cleveland That Only Get Better With Age
There’s a lot of history right here in Cleveland. Our pretty city features many stories and tales of the past, some of which are hidden in the heights of our historic structures. From the tiniest features in Lake View Cemetery to the iconic murals of our local library, there’s a little bit of history in everything. A few places, however, seem to get lovelier as time passes.
1. Cedar Lee Theatre (2163 Lee Rd., Cleveland Heights)
Nowadays, going to the theater is just as much an experience as it was in the days of the nickelodeon. What has changed in the meantime, of course, is the quality of the films we are consuming and the extravagance of our surroundings. The Cedar Lee Theater first opened in 1925, and its many screens hold oodles of history. This charming theater has hosted people of all ages across several generations, and it was also the first home of the Cleveland International Film Festival. It is located in the historic Cedar Lee District, which today is overflowing with incredible shopping opportunities.
2. The Arcade (401 Euclid Ave., Cleveland)
Since it first opened to the public in 1890, this charming site has changed dramatically. We'd like to say it aged like a fine wine, but it actually fell into disrepair following the remodeling work done in 1939. In 2001, the site underwent a $60 million renovation, and it has never looked better. Don't believe us? Check out these
then and now photos
3. Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument (Public Square, Cleveland)
In 1894, you might have recognized Cleveland's Public Square thanks to familiar features like the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument. It was built to commemorate local Civil War veterans, but it actually omitted the names of 140 black soldiers. Unfortunately, it took us nearly 120 years to correct the mistake, but the names have since been added to the monument.
4. St. Theodosius Orthodox Cathedral (733 Starkweather Ave., Cleveland)
Tremont is a beautiful area, overflowing with lavish architecture and rich stories. If walls could talk, this neighborhood would be the neatest place to visit. However, this neighborhood was traditionally home to working-class immigrants, and smoke from the neighboring steel mills took its toll on the community. Many structures have been restored to their former glory in recent years, including the heavenly St. Theodosius Orthodox Cathedral.
5. The Cleveland Cultural Gardens (East Blvd. and Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., Cleveland)
Rockefeller Park is one of the loveliest features of the East Side, and it bears a long history. With each passing year, the park evolves and changes consistently. Nearly three dozen gardens decorate the campus of the park, each celebrating a different culture. The first garden dates back to 1926, and the site has been adored by the public ever since.
6. Wade Lagoon (University Circle, Cleveland)
In the heart of the historic Wade Park District is... well, Wade Park. Jeptha Wade donated the land that would become this park to the City of Cleveland in 1882, and he'd certainly adore what it has become. Surrounded by culture, beauty, and an incredible art museum, this pretty place grows lovelier with each passing season.
7. The Dunham Tavern Museum (6709 Euclid Ave., Cleveland)
This incredible structure is almost too quaint for the city that has grown around it. It may seem out of place, but that's likely because this charming building can trace its history back to 1824. This stagecoach stop and its gardens offer a delightful escape from the urban surroundings.
8. Garfield Park Reservation (11350 Broadway Ave., Garfield Heights)
This park dates back to 1894, and it has been a cherished destination ever since. In the 1930s, New Deal stonework projects put locals to work when we needed it most. Roughly thirty years prior to that, a railroad company actually created the gorgeous waterfall that visitors admire today. Now maintained by the Cleveland Metroparks, this urban gem seems lovelier than ever before.
9. Cleveland Trust Company Building (900 Euclid Ave., Cleveland)
This iconic landmark has a story that seems to grow more unusual with each passing decade. The 1907 Beaux-Arts building is instantly recognizable for its dramatic rotunda, which is just one of many architectural features that have been maintained over the years. It was an early home to the Cleveland Trust Company, but it has since seen deterioration, restoration, and the opening of a nightclub and grocery store within its artistic walls.
10. Playhouse Square
This entire district is worthy of recognition, as it has changed in the most remarkable way over the years. This lovely neighborhood captures the splendor of Jazz Age Cleveland, and it is also the largest performing arts district in the country outside of New York City. The district was plagued by fire and vandalism during the 1960s, but it has since undergone incredible restoration - including the addition of the giant outdoor chandelier.
There are lovely features all over Cleveland, but these pretty places have somehow gotten better with age. As time passes, we come to cherish our local history more and more, but we also strive to enhance the beauty in places where our most memorable stories took place. What would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below!
While these lovely places celebrate some of the best and most memorable moments in Cleveland history, there are some events we’d prefer to forget. You’ve probably never heard of these
terrifying moments in Cleveland history, but they’re worthy of learning.