The Cleveland Memory Time Machine

A couple in an old fashioned car driving out of a vortex

Below is a list of events in Cleveland history that appear in the Cleveland Memory Time Machine section on the CMP homepage.

January

  • January 1, 1883: The Valley Railway Co. opens its main line running from Cleveland to Bowerstown in Monroe Township where it connects to the Baltimore and Ohio (B&O), one of America's largest railroads. Find out more about Cleveland's railroad history. (ECH)
  • January 2, 1914: Cleveland Foundation, established by Frederick H. Goff, becomes the first “community foundation” in the nation. (ECH)
  • January 3, 1941: Ground is broken for the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics research laboratory (now the NASA Lewis Research Center) as an institution responsible for encouraging the growth of American aviation through government research. (ECH)
  • January 4, 1903: The Cleveland Grand Orchestra, a forerunner of the Cleveland Orchestra, holds its first program at Gray's Armory under the musical direction of Johann Beck and Emil Ring. (ECH)
  • January 5, 1884: A 3-alarm fire after a performance of Humpty Dumpty closes down the Park Theater. Located at the northwest side of Public Square next to the Old Stone Church, the theater does not reopen until September 1886 and three years later is renamed the Lyceum Theater. (ECH)
  • January 6, 1936: Industrialist and philanthropist John Long Severance dies at the age of 73. A chairman of the board of the Cleveland Arcade Company and director of the Cleveland Trust Co., Severance was a generous benefactor of the Cleveland Museum of Art and in 1929 he gave the city $1.5 million to build a concert hall for the Cleveland Orchestra (Severance Hall). He is buried in Lakeview Cemetery. (ECH)
  • January 7, 1842: A new weekly newspaper is founded by Joseph Gray as the local Democratic organ for the city, a Republican stronghold at the time. In December 1842 with his brother, Nelson, Gray had purchased the Cleveland Advertiser, a faltering Democratic weekly, which he resurrected into the new Plain Dealer. (ECH)
  • January 8, 1974: The Laub Baking Company closes its doors after 87 years of business. Originally run by German immigrant and baker Jacob Laub from out of his home on Lorain Ave., it grew to become the largest independent wholesale baker in Ohio. Find out more about the German Americans of Cleveland (ECH).
  • January 9, 1938: Broadcast history is made when the choir performing weekly on the “Negro Hour” over radio station WGAR adopts the name Wings Over Jordan . The ensemble, founded by the Rev. Glen T. Settle in 1935, was the first full-time professional black choir in America and performed before sold-out, non-segregated audiences in over 40 states. WOJC received numerous honors, including radio's prestigious Peabody Award. (ECH)
  • January 10, 1996: A coalition of teachers unions, public school administrators and civil libertarians file a lawsuit aimed at derailing Cleveland's school - voucher program. The complaint, filed in Franklin County Common Pleas Court, contends the pilot program, which is scheduled to begin in September, violates state and federal constitutional guarantees of separation of church and state. The suit also contends the voucher program would cause irreparable harm to the nearly bankrupt Cleveland schools by diverting public money to private schools.
  • January 11, 1914: The city of Cleveland's first official publication, the City Record makes its first appearance. A weekly publication containing the proceedings of the Cleveland City Council, a mail subcription cost 50 cents a year, though copies are available free at City Hall and public libraries. Today they are available free for download from the Cleveland City Council website. (ECH)
  • January 12, 1906: Cleveland's most famous con artist, Cassie Chadwick, is sent to jail where she dies a year later at the age of 50. A forger and a fortuneteller, she borrowed vast sums of money from Cleveland banks between 1897 and 1905 by claiming to be the illegitimate daughter of Andrew Carnegie and using $5 million in securities and certificates forged with Carnegie's name. She was finally exposed in 1904, convicted and sentenced to 14 years in prison. (ECH)
  • January 13, 2001: The New York Spaghetti House ends its 74-year run, the longest for a family-operated restaurant in Cleveland. The restaurant, located at 2173 E. 9th St. across the street from the Empire Theater, was opened in 1927 by Mario and Maria Brigotti, and served such entertainment notables as Jimmy Durante, W.C. Fields, Red Skeleton, and Mickey Rooney.
  • January 14, 1994: The Dobama Theatre, originally conceived in 1960 as a provider of free quality theater for the people of Cleveland, takes a big step in casting its first professional Equity actor as well as paying the rest of the company for its production of Donald Marguilies' play, Sight Unseen. Joyce Casey, artistic and producing director for Dobama says that it is a necessary step to move forward and improve the quality of its productions. See the Dobama Collection in CMP.
  • January 15, 1991: Nearly 1,000 gather on Public Square in front of the B.P. Building to protest U.S. military intervention in the Iraqi occupation of Kuwait. Chanting “No blood for oil,” many of the protestors lay down in the street, disrupting traffic through the Square for nearly 3 hours. (ECH)
  • January 16, 1976: Mayor Ralph J. Perk tells the National Gambling Commission there is no organized crime in Cleveland. His testimony, however, is contradicted by other witnesses including Cleveland Police Chief Lloyd F. Garey, who says illegal gambling in Cleveland and northeast Ohio provide the lifeblood of organized crime. (PD)
  • January 17, 1977: The National Weather Service says cold relief is in sight as Cleveland faces the worst wintery weather in 14 years. With temperatures of a minus 17 degrees in addition to a shortage of natural gas for heating, schools were expected to stay closed for up to a week. (PD)
  • January 18, 1956: A strike at the Cleveland Worsted Mill Co., which began on August 22, 1955 is ended when the firm's stockholders vote to dissolve the 77-year old company. Union Workers were trying to secure a contract and a 7 1/2 cents per hour wage increase.
  • January 19, 1992: Cuyahoga County Engineer Thomas J. Neff announces repair projects for the year including a $3.8 million repair to the deck of the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge and an extensive renovation of the Fulton Road Bridge over Big creek Valley near the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo costing $9 million. The Fulton Road Bridge was eventually demolished in April-May, 2007. See images from the Cuyahoga County Engineer's Photography Collection.
  • January 20, 1942: In response to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor the month before, the Cuyahoga County Council for Civilian Defense is established to protect the area from enemy air raids.
  • January 21, 1999: Chris Palmer is selected as the head coach for the “new” Cleveland Browns.
  • January 22, 1976: After complaints from councilmen and residents about traffic laws not being enforced, police working on the West Side are ordered to increase the number of traffic arrests or face reassignment or transfer. (P.D.)
  • January 23, 1992: Two experiments designed by Cleveland's NASA Lewis Research Center will be conducted on the space shuttle Discovery when it lifts off from Cape Canaveral today. One is designed to determine how vibrations from the movement of crew members or equipment may affect such experiments as crystal growth. The other experiment will measure how fast a fluid near its critical point reaches a new temperature in near-zero gravity.
  • January 24, 1954: The last streetcar in Cleveland is retired from service. The railbound streetcars were replaced by the Cleveland Transit System's more efficient bus and rapid transit system.
  • January 25, 1976: The last fully intact World War II fleet submarine in existence is donated to the Cleveland Coordinating Committee for Cod, Inc. to become a memorial ship. The submarine, located at the lakefront on North Marginal Rd. between E. 9th St. and Burke Lakefront Airport, became a National Historic Landmark in 1986.
  • January 26, 1928: Cleveland's Terminal Tower opens two years before the rest of the Union Terminal complex is completed. Find out more about the Cleveland Union Terminal.
  • January 27, 1975: Cleveland City council authorizes the layoff of 119 firemen because of budget problems, joining 169 policemen laid off a week earlier. The firemen were expected to be rehired by March 5. (P.D.)
  • January 28, 1928: Ron Penfound, who entertained Cleveland children as Captain Penny on WEWS-TV from 1955 through 1971 is born in Elyria, Ohio.
  • January 29, 1754: Moses Cleaveland, founder of the city of Cleveland, is born in Canterbury Connecticut.
  • January 30, 1884: Cleveland General Hospital (renamed Saint Luke's Hospital in 1906 and now known as Saint Luke's Medical Center ) is founded as a medical facility meant to provide clinical training for students from Wooster University's Medical Department.
  • January 31, 1852: Hungarian patriot and statesman, Louis Kossuth, arrives in Cleveland as part of his fundraising tour in the United States. Kossuth was trying to raise money to help achieve Hungary's independence from Austria, establishing it as a republic. A statue of Kossuth was erected in University Circle in 1902 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of his visit. Find out more about Hungarian Americans in Cleveland.

February

  • February 1, 1902: Black poet, playwright, novelist, and lecturer Langston Hughes is born. Though born in Joplin Missouri, Hughes moved to Cleveland in 1916 where he attended Central High School and wrote for the literary magazine there.
  • February 2, 1997: The city of Cleveland begins selling bricks from the rubble of Municipal Stadium, former home of the Indians and the Browns. Each brick costs $10 and is enclosed in a gift box with a certificate of authenticity.
  • February 3, 1931: Cleveland City councilman William E. Potter is slain in one of the most sensational crimes ever committed in Cleveland at the time.
  • February 4, 1997: Results of DNA testing of five items preserved from the July 4, 1954 crime scene provide evidence that Dr. Sam Sheppard may be innocent of the murder of his wife, Marilyn. Read more about the Sheppard case.
  • February 5, 1921:The State Theater, at 1519 Euclid Ave. opens its doors as a venue for motion picture screenings and vaudeville performances.
  • February 6, 1945: Paul Brown signs a contract to coach what would become the Cleveland Browns.
  • February 7, 1965: WVIZ TV channel 25 in Cleveland, Ohio (PBS) begins broadcasting.
  • February 8, 1996: Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White arrives in Chicago to help finalize a deal that could allow the Browns to move to Baltimore, if Cleveland would be guaranteed a football team upon completion of a new stadium.
  • February 9, 1997: Cleveland hosts the National Basketball Association's 47th All-Star Game in Gund Arena. Michael Jordan's 14 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists were the first triple double in NBA All-Star Game history.
  • February 10, 1975: Richfield Township zoning commissioners continue a hearing on a zoning proposal to prohibit rock concerts at the Coliseum after Led Zeppelin concertgoers Jan. 24 smashed windows at the Coliseum.
  • February 11, 2003: Judah Rubenstein, an archivist, historian, author, and research associate for the Jewish Federation of Cleveland (JCF) dies at the age of 82. He is best known as an authority on Cleveland Jewish history.
  • February 12, 1999: Long time broadcaster Jimmy Dudley dies at age 89. He was the voice of the Indians from 1948 to 1969.
  • February 13, 1992: A Cleveland version of the board game Monopoly, called “Clevelandopoly,” is announced to begin appearing in Kaufmann's Department Stores, Medic Drug Stores, bookstores and stationery stores later in the summer.
  • February 14, 1921: The Ohio Theater opens on Playhouse Square. Under the management of local playwright, Robt. McLaughlin, the Ohio sheltered a stock company and Broadway road shows in the 1920s.
  • February 15-16, 1816: President-elect Abraham Lincoln visits Cleveland and, after a processional down Euclid Avenue, he addresses the crowd from the Weddell House balcony, urging all citizens to support the Constitution and the Federal Union.
  • February 17, 1869: The Cleveland Public Library first opens its doors to the public in a rented room on the third floor of the Northrup and Harrington Block at the corner of Superior Avenue and West 3rd Street.
  • February 18, 1909: The Boston Red Sox trade Cy Young to the Cleveland Naps for pitchers Charlie Chech and Jack Ryan and $12500.
  • February 19, 1996: The Cleveland Institute of Music's 75th Anniversary Celebration is broadcast live from Tower City by WCLV.
  • February 20, 2002: U.S. Supreme Court Justices listen to 80 minutes of argument in Zelman v. Simmons-Harris, a case testing an Ohio school voucher program that makes it possilbe for for more than 4,000 children in the struggling Cleveland public school system to attend private schools.
  • February 21, 2002: U.S. District Judge Paul Matia rules that accused Nazi guard and longtime Cleveland resident John Demjanjuk be stripped of his U.S. citizenship.
  • February 22, 1903:Tom Jenkins defeats Frank Gotch in Cleveland in the first meeting of the two most dominant American wrestlers of the era. Jenkins was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1872 and he popularized the catch-as-catch-can style of wrestling.
  • February 23, 1925: Louis Stokes, lawyer and former U.S. congressman, is born in Cleveland.
  • February 24, 1994: The new scoreboard is unveiled at the new Cleveland Indians ballpark, Jacobs Field (now Progessive Field).
  • February 25, 1995: The owner of radio stations WMMS and WMJI pledges $100,000 to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame which is scheduled to open on Labor Day weekend the same year.
  • February 26, 2008: Democratic presidential candidates Hilary Clinton and Barak Obama face each other in a historic debate at Cleveland State University's Wolstein Center.
  • February 27, 1966: The Agora Theatre and Ballroom opens its first location at 2175 Cornell Rd. near Case Western Reserve University.
  • February 28, 1921 : The Cleveland Clinic welcomes its first patients in its newly dedicated building on on Euclid Ave. and East 93rd St.
  • February 29, 1924: Cleveland Indians power-hitting third baseman, Al Rosen, is born. He played his entire 10-year career (1947-1956) with the Cleveland Indians.

March

  • March 1, 1997: The demolition of Cleveland Municipal Stadium is now complete. The debris for the old stadium has been removed clearing the way for construction of the new Cleveland Browns Stadium.
  • March 2, 1955: The Captain Penny Show debuts on WEWS-TV. The show, hosted by Elyria native Ron Penfound, features cartoons, “Little Rascals”, and “3 Stooges” shorts.
  • March 3, 1910: The Cleveland Railway Company, predecessor to CTS and RTA, begins its era as the city's public transit franchise, with a fleet that numbered as many as 1,702 streetcars and buses.
  • March 4, 1908: Fire kills 172 students and two teachers at Lakeview Elementary School in Collinwood. The fire began when an overheated steam pipe came in contact with wooden joists under the front stairs. Only 194 of the 366 students enrolled escaped while the others were trapped inside the rear first-floor exit, where fleeing children became wedged tightly on the stairs behind a set of inner vestibule doors. See photos of the fire.
  • March 5, 1949: Congressional Medal of Honor recipient William Adelbert Foster, a U.S. Marine, is laid to rest at Calvary Cemetary in Cleveland. A Cleveland native, Foster lost his life in Okinawa during WWII when he dove onto a live Japanese hand grenade that landed in a foxhole he shared with another Marine, and it exploded. Mortally wounded, but having saved the life of his fellow Marine, Foster gave up his 2 remaining hand grenades to his fellow comrades-in-arms to continue the fight against infiltrating Japanese soldiers.
  • March 6, 1906: Cleveland City Council adopts new street numbering system that uses a line of demarcation through downtown and public sqaure to separate the east and west numbered streets.
  • March 7, 1986: Local Rocker Eric Carmen presents Mayor George Voinovich the first copy of his new 45, “The Rock Stops Here” in honor of the city's recent success in the USA Today Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum phone poll.
  • March 8, 1992: Ronald McDonald House officials announce that they are working on a deal that would move the facilty, currently near University Hospitals to the other end of University Circle near Cleveland Clinic. The house enables families with critically ill children who live outside the Cleveland area to be near them during their hospital care for very little or no cost. The current house can only accommodate 25 families, often making it necessary for them to turn away families. The new prospective 5-acre site at E. 105th and Euclid would allow for expansion, including a playground and a larger parking lot.
  • March 9, 1995: King-Otis Stables, the home of the Cleveland Mounted Police, reports it is at an all-time low with only 12 horses occupying the 40-stalled facility at E. 38th St. south of Marginal Rd. Of those 12, four horses are 15 years or older and should be retired. The Cleveland Mounted Police Unit is believed to be the oldest continuous mounted unit in the country. Some sources place the origin as 1895, but a photograph in the Cleveland Police Historical Museum, dated 1890, shows horses being used to pull patrol wagons. The unit marched in President Warren G. Harding's funeral procession, as well as in his inauguration parade. It also marched in several other inaugurals, including those of Presidents Eisenhower, Reagan and Bush.
  • March 10, 1977: Uniformed police officers are assigned to guard the outer offices of Cleveland Mayor Ralph Perk and City Council in the wake of a two-day siege at Warrensville Heights City Hall, where a gunman took two hostages, and the seizing of 130 hostages in Washington, D.C. office buildings by Hanefi Muslim terrorists.
  • March 11, 1976: The Western Reserve Historical Society recommends to the Ohio Historical Society that statues adorning the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge in Cleveland be declared a historic site. County Engineer Albert S. Porter says the “columns are monstrosities and should be torn down and forgotten.” He says their preservation would interfere with his plans to renovate the bridge.
  • March 12, 1976: Lawyers for the city of Cleveland and the Cleveland Electric Illuminating Co. meet to try to settle a $330 million antitrust suit. The city wants the right to buy power from CEI at wholesale rates and to use CEI lines to buy power from the state of New York. The idea was to cut costs by taking Muny Light out of the generating business, which eventually happened.
  • March 13, 1910: Popular big band leader of the 30s and 40s Sammy Kaye (born Samuel Zarnocay, Jr.) is born in Lakewood. Some of his hits included “Remember Pearl Harbor,” “Harbor Lights,” and “It Isn't Fair.”. Some may remember his slogan, “Swing and sway with Sammy Kaye.”
  • March 14, 1900: The Rev. Clara Lucil Johnson, one of the first African American female ministers in Cleveland, is born. She was also the founder of the Highlight FBH “Fire Baptist Holiness” in Maple Heights. More about Arican American faith communities in Cleveland.
  • March 15, 1957: Over 9,000 visitors gather at the Buzzard Roost in Hinckley Reservation to await and witness the return of the turkey vultures or buzzards, marking the very first Return of the Buzzard celebration. As predicted, the buzzards showed up that Friday at 2 P.M. The buzzards have returned to Hinckley each March 15th since 1819, when, it is said, they were attracted by thawing carcasses of livestock predators killed months earlier by farmers in the great Hinckley Hunt of 1818.
  • March 16, 1941: 6,425 people attend the Knights of Columbus first annual track meet at Cleveland Arena. Bringing both national and international track and field athletes to compete, 3 new world records are set and one is tied during the 15-event program. One of the records was set by local track star Stella Walsh in the women's 220-yard dash.
  • March 17, 1912: An estimated crowd of 100,000, coming from as far away as New York and Chicago, line Cleveland's streets to honor World Featherweight Champion and local athlete Johnny Kilbane at the St. Patrick's Day parade that year.
  • March 18, 1975: Cuyahoga County commissioners meet with suburban mayors about tax support for a regional transit authority. Mayors wanted a list of proposed fare schedules and a guarantee of services they might expect before agreeing to support RTA since the tax would be shouldered primarily by those living in the suburbs.
  • March 19, 1927: Hero sled dog, Balto, arrives in Cleveland and is given a parade. He and his fellow sled dogs then retire to their new home at the Brookside Zoo.
  • March 20, 1978: Cyrus S. Eaton, 94, who began his career under the tutelage of oil baron John D. Rockefeller, announces that he is retiring as a director of Chessie System Inc., the railroad holding company that Eaton at one time ran as chairman. Eaton had built his fortune through investments in Chessie, Goodyear, Cleveland Electric Illuminating Co., Detroit Steel and Republic Steel.
  • March 21, 1952: WJW-AM (850) Radio disc jockey Alan Freed presents the Moondog Coronation Ball at the Cleveland Arena where 25,000 attend the first rock 'n' roll concert ever. Unfortunately, the capacity of the Arena was half that, and fire marshalls had to shut down the concert after the first song by Paul “Hucklebuck” Williams ended.
  • March 22, 1978: The Northeast Ohio Jazz Society, one of the nation's leading organizations devoted to promoting the appreciation of jazz music, is incorporated in Cleveland with Willard Jenkins elected as its first president. Over the years, the Jazz Society has helped to keep jazz alive in Cleveland by presenting hundreds of concerts, educational programs and social events. Working with Cuyahoga Community College, it helped launch the first Tri-C JazzFest in 1980 and two years later began holding free summertime Sunday afternoon jazz concerts at Cain Park.

April

  • April 1, 1924: The Cuyahoga County Public Library System opens on the third floor of the Kinney and Levan Bldg. at 1375 Euclid Ave. as a department of the Cleveland Public Library, with Margaret Thayer as head librarian. The system was established to provide service for all of the county not currently served by a free public library.
  • April 2, 1981: The Cleveland Children's Museum is incorporated by a coalition of parents, educators and civic leaders as an educational facility dedicated to providing experiences for young children to discover the world and learn through creative play.
  • April 3, 1996: Carl B. Stokes, the first African American mayor of a major U.S. when he was elected mayor of Cleveland in November 1967, dies of cancer at the age of 69.
  • April 4, 1994: President Bill Clinton throws out the first pitch at the opening game between the Cleveland Indians and the Seattle Mariners. It is the first game played at the new Jacobs Field (now Progressive Field). The Indians ended up defeating the Seattle Mariners 4-3 in 11 innings.
  • April 5, 1819: Heinrich Christian Schwan is born in Horneburg, Germany. A Cleveland pastor he is credited with one of the country's first lighted Christmas tree displays when he included a lighted Christmas tree into his church service at Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church in 1851.
  • April 6, 1865: Cleveland native William R. Richardson, a private in the 2nd Ohio Volunteer Calvary, is captured by the Confederate Army at Sayler's Creek, Virginia. He was able to escape and returned to the union lines with important information on southern troop positions for which he was awarded the Medal of Honor on April 7, 1866.
  • April 7, 1964: Reverend Bruce W. Klunder, a twenty-seven year old minister and Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) member dies after he was crushed by a bulldozer while protesting at the Lakeview school construction site.
  • April 8, 1975: In his debut as player-manager for the Cleveland Indians, Frank Robinson hits a homerun at his very first at-bat at the home opener at Municipal Stadium. Robinson is the first African American to become a manager for a major league baseball team.
  • April 9, 1990: St. John Hospital at 7911 Detroit Ave. closes its doors after providing medical services on Cleveland's west side since 1890.
  • April 10, 1851: The Cleveland premier of Joseph Haydn's oratorio, The Creation is performed by the Cleveland Mendelssohn Society in Melodeon Hall. The Cleveland Mendelssohn Society was a local musical society organized for the performance of oratorios and other sacred music.
  • April 11, 1920: The Shaker Heights Rapid Transit begins service with two branches, Moreland (now Van Aken) Blvd. and Shaker Blvd. Originally called the Cleveland Interurban Railroad, it was built by the Van Sweringen brothers to provide easy transportation from the developing suburbs to downtown Cleveland.
  • April 12, 1977: State Appeals Judge John T. Patton and court-appointed receiver Sam Miller ordered that the Sheraton-Cleveland Hotel, which had been under foreclosure, remain open while a group of investors led by Browns owner Art Modell spent $10 million to renovate the 59-year-old-hotel. Stouffer Corp., the hotel's new operator, wanted it closed during the renovation. But patrons complained of having to move their meetings and dinners to other hotels. The hotel is now the Cleveland Renaissance Hotel. (P.D.)
  • April 13, 1991: The Main Avenue Bridge is closed for major rennovation by Cuyahoga County and the Ohio Department of Transportation causing headaches for commuters. The $65 million project includes widening of the bridge's traffic lanes from 10 to 12', installation of a new 400-watt sodium vapor lighting system, construction of a new 42 in. traffic median, drainage reconstruction, and repair or replacement of deteriorated steel. The rennovation will not be finished until October of the next year.
  • April 14, 1962: The Cleveland Poetry Center is founded by poet and Fenn College English instructor, Lewis Turco. Now called the the Cleveland State University Poetry Center, it is dedicated to encouraging the creation and appreciation of poetry and other creative writing.
  • April 15, 1922: Dedication ceremonies are held for the new Public Auditorium, the fourth building in the Group Plan of Public Buildings, now called The Mall.
  • April 16, 1924: Academy Award winning American composer, conductor and arranger Henry Mancini is born in the Little Italy area of Cleveland. His best-known works are the theme to The Pink Panther film series and “Moon River” from Breakfast at Tiffany's.
  • April 17, 1999: As the first pick of the draft, Tim Couch is chosen as quarterback for the “new” Cleveland Browns.
  • April 18, 1973: Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Paris opens in the lobby of the State Theater. The production will run until June 29, 1975 to become the longest-running show in Cleveland history.
  • April 19, 1903: Eliot Ness is born in Chicago. In 1935, he is appointed Safety Director of Cleveland by Mayor Harold Burton to clean up the scandel-ridden police department.
  • April 20, 1945: The Cleveland Browns is founded by Cleveland taxi cab king, Arthur “Mickey” McBride. Reserve players for the team are called the “taxi” or “cab” squad, because they drove cabs for McBride when they were not needed for actual play.
  • April 21, 1993: Attendees this evening to the 17th Annual Cleveland International Film Festival can view the 90 minute film from Hungary, Sweet Emma, Dear Bobe at the Hoyts Tower City Cinema downtown. The festival has been part of Cleveland's springtime events since Jonathan Forman organized the first one at the Cedar Lee Theatre in Cleveland Heights back in 1977 when it featured only eight films from seven countries. It is the largest film festival in Ohio.
  • April 22, 1938: Local sculptor Herman Matzen dies at the age of 77. Known for his public sculpture in the city of Cleveland including the Moses and Pope Gregory IX statues on the exterior of the Cuyahoga County Courthouse, the Richard Wagner monument in Edgewater Park and the Collinwood Fire Memorial in Lake View Cemetery, he is buried in Lake View Cemetery.
  • April 23, 1978: About 35,000 signatures have been obtained in an effort to recall Mayor Dennis J. Kucinich with recall leaders hoping soon to surpass the 37,000 needed to put the issue on the ballot. Kucinich's firing a month earlier of Police Chief Richard D. Hongisto had sparked the recall movement.
  • April 24, 1976: Although a decision is not expected for several months from U.S. District Judge Frank J. Battisti in the NAACP suit charging Cleveland and state educators with intentionally segregating black and white pupils (Reed v. Rhodes), a growing number of influential groups and individuals are joining to shape community reaction to the ruling. The community leaders said they would be able to advise Battisti in preparing and carrying out any desegregation order. (P.D.)
  • April 25, 1912: The Cleveland Music School Settlement is incorporated. The school, designed to to provide free or inexpensive musical training for the children and wage earners of Cleveland's newly arriving immigrant population, started out with only 50 pupils.
  • April 26, 1976: Cleveland City Council, by a unanimous vote, passes legislation against redlining, giving the city power to withdraw its accounts from financial institutions that failed to make sufficient loans in city neighborhoods. Council members hope the legislation will force a sharp increase in the number of mortgage loans available to Cleveland residents. (P.D.)
  • April 27, 1995: Today is the last day families can take their kids to the Indoor Amusement Park at the International Exposition Center in Brook Park for the season. The 20-acre indoor amusement park boasts a 35 foot tall ferris wheel in its own glass atrium offering sweeping views of the Cleveland skyline.
  • April 28, 1865: Over 90,000 Clevelanders file past President Abraham Lincoln's body on Public Square to pay their respect to the slain leader. Cleveland is one stop in a 1,700-mile rail journey to Springfield, Illinois, where Lincoln will be buried on May 4th.
  • April 29, 1879: The first electric streetlights, invented by Charles Brush, are demonstrated on Public Square. The Brush Electric Company later became one of the components of General Electric when it was formed.
  • April 30, 1976: Cleveland television personality Dorothy Fuldheim gets a second chance to interview former New Left leader Jerry Rubin. Five years earlier, Fuldheim threw Rubin off the set during a televised interview when Rubin advocated revolution, dope and free sex. “You were an indescribably sordid character,” Fuldheim told Rubin after taping the replay.

May

  • May 1, 1891: The first baseball game is played at League Park at E. 66th and Lexington Ave. before a crowd of 9,000 fans. The home team at that time was the Cleveland Spiders and its star pitcher was Denton True “Cy” Young. In 1979 the site of the old League Park was declared a Cleveland landmark and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • May 2, 1933: Brewery operations at the Pilsener Brewing Co. in Cleveland resume after a long, dry, break during Prohibition. Clevelanders can now enjoy one of the brewery's four different brews including P.O.C (Pilsner of Cleveland).
  • May 3, 1927: Popular song composer Ernest R. Ball dies at the age of 51. Best known for such songs as “When Irish Eyes Are Smiling” and “Mother Machree,” he also composed music for Broadway. He is buried in Lake View Cemetery.
  • May 4, 1921: Real estate developer and Cleveland Indians co-owner David H. Jacobs is born in Akron. With his brother, Richard, Jacobs managed a real-estate portfolio that included some of Cleveland's top downtown locations including the Galleria and the 57-story Society Center and they were prime backers of the Gateway sports complex. The two brothers bought control of the Cleveland Indians in 1986 and worked to revitalize the Indians farm system. Jacobs Field (now Progressive Field) was named after Richard and David Jacobs. David Jacobs died in 1992.
  • May 5, 1986: It's offical! After a year of lobbying by Cleveland city officials, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation (based in New York City), announces that Cleveland has been chosen as the site for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
  • May 6, 1925: The Cleveland Public Library opens its new headquarters building downtown on Superior Ave. between East 3rd and East 6th.
  • May 7, 1992: Classrooms in all the Cleveland public schools are open to parents and relatives today for the first Cleveland Summit on Education's Parent/Family Day. As a way to foster parental involvement and interest in the schools, relatives are allowed to watch their children and teachers at work in the classroom. Parents and relatives will also have the opportunity to give input on how the system can best educate their children. P.D.
  • May 8, 1990: After endorsement of the project by city leaders in 1989 and a spirited campaign, Cuyahoga County voters approve a 15-year “sin tax” on cigarettes and alcohol to finance the Cleveland Gateway, a sports complex at E. 4th St. and Bolivar Rd. The new complex would be home to the Cleveland Indians and Cavaliers.
  • May 9, 1927: Official city recognition of the Cultural Gardens of Cleveland becomes a reality with the passage of an ordinance by the Cleveland City Council that sets aside areas of Rockefeller Park for future gardens.
  • May 10, 1821: The earliest musical concert in the city of Cleveland as recorded in the Annals of Cleveland takes place on this date at P. Mowrey's assembly room. It is a program of sacred music.
  • May 11, 1965: Cleveland industrialist and chairman of the board of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway, Cyrus S. Eaton, dies at the age of 97.
  • May 12, 1796: Moses Cleaveland is appointed superintendent of the Western Reserve surveying party as plans are made to explore the Great Lakes region.
  • May 13, 1862: The 6th Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, comprised of recruits drawn primarily from the Western Reserve, move into Wheeling, West Virginia to join Major General John Charles Fremont in his pursuit of Stonewall Jackson down the Shenandoah Valley.
  • May 14, 1976: Cleveland Mayor Ralph J. Perk promises to set up a task force aimed at getting investment dollars flowing into the city's commercial strips and areas with older housing. Neighborhood groups had accused banks and savings and loan associations of excluding some neighborhoods from home loans, but the lenders denied the charge, stressing they must make prudent loans that do not risk depositors' funds. P.D.
  • May 15, 1929: 123 patients, employees and visitors die in what will be remembered as the Cleveland Clinic Disaster when x-ray film exposed to heat from a 100-watt incandescent light bulb catches fire and releases smoke and poisonous gases in the main building of the Cleveland Clinic.
  • May 16, 1937: Ground is broken for the Cleveland Arena, a 10,000-seat facility built as the home for the Cleveland Barons professional AHL hockey team. The arena also hosted other sporting events and was the location for Alan Freed's Moondog Coronation Ball in 1952.
  • May 17, 1845: The City Bank of Cleveland is granted a state charter and two months later opens at 52 Superior St. with two employees. In 1848, it later reorganized to become National City Bank and moved its location up the road to 21 Superior St.
  • May 18, 1924: 5,000 women march down Euclid Ave., from E. 24th to E. 3rd St. and Lakeside to “will peace in the world”. Marchers in the Women's Council Peace Parade for the Prevention of Future Wars represented more than 40 organizations and institutions including the Women's City Club, the Daughters of the Civil War, and more than a dozen Parent-Teacher Associations.
  • May 19, 1852: Euclid Beach Park owner and operator, Dudley Sherman Humphrey II is born in Wakeman Township in Erie County. Humphrey invented and patented a new type of popcorn popper that seasoned the corn as it popped. Setting up popcorn stands throughout the city, Humphrey also set up a concession stand at Euclid Beach Park. When the park failed, the Humphrey family bought up the lease in 1901 and renovated the park, turning it into the most popular amusement park in Ohio in its day. Read more about the Humphreys and Euclid Beach Park.
  • May 20, 1985: Retired Plain Dealer reporter, columnist and editor Philip W. Porter and his wife, Dorothy, are murdered in their Shaker Heights home. Theodore Soke was convicted of the crime in 1991. Read an ebook by Porter.
  • May 21, 1959: The Cleveland Zoological Park (now the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo) opens its children's petting farm. Today, the petting farm is Kookaburra Station, a working sheep ranch, where visitors can watch sheep-shearing and enjoy up-close encounters with domesticated animals in the contact yard.
  • May 22, 1939: Distinguished civil engineer and bridge designer, Wilbur J. Watson, dies at the age of 68. Founder of Wilbur J. Watson and Associates in Cleveland, Watson helped set standards for bridge construction across the country. He was the author of several books about bridges, one which he authored with his daughters Sara Ruth and Emily. See the Wilbur J. and Sara Ruth Watson Bridge Book Collection.
  • May 23, 1937: Standard Oil billionaire and prominent Clevelander John D. Rockefeller dies in New York, at the age of 98.
  • May 24, 1975: A woman described as a “dead ringer” for Patricia Hearst and a male companion were held by the Ashtabula County Sheriff's Department for 2 1/2 hours until an FBI agent confirmed she was not the missing newspaper heiress. P.D.
  • May 25, 1979: The Ohio City Preservation District, comprised of 25 blocks on Cleveland's near West Side is placed on the National Register of Historic Places. In addition to the numerous examples of Federal, Greek Revival and Gothic Revival residences, larger and Victorian era houses are also found in the district. Notable buildings include St. Ignatius High School, the Carnegie West Branch Library and St. Patrick's Church.
  • May 26, 1862: Plain Dealer founder Joseph William Gray dies at the age of 48. In 1841, along with his brother, Admiral Nelson Gray, he bought the Cleveland Advertiser, a failing Democratic weekly. A month later, Gray transformed the paper into the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
  • May 27, 1992: A German-American institution in Cleveland, the Hofbrau House Restaurant at 1400 E. 55th St. celebrates its 30th anniversary in the business. Resembling an old-fashioned German beer hall, the walls are filled with drinking and feasting scenes, some of them reminiscent of the art of Albrecht Durer, a 15th-century German painter. The restaurant would later be sold in 2000 and the building would be razed two years later. Today it is the location of Wonder City Farm.
  • May 28, 1867: The Western Reserve & Northern Ohio Historical Society is founded to preserve and present the history of all of the people of northeast Ohio. Now known as the Western Reserve Historical Society, it is the largest privately supported regional historical society in the country.
  • May 29, 1937: The Great Lakes Exposition opens its second season with a popular new attraction — an Aquacade featuring water ballet shows starring Olympic champion swimmers Eleanor Holm and Johnny Weismuller.
  • May 31, 1890: Erected at a cost of $867,000, the Cleveland Arcade opens. Modeled after the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II in Milan, the Arcade was designed by John Eisenmann. Today, the Arcade is one of the few remaining arcades of its kind in the United States.
  • May 31, 1957: World featherweight boxing champion and Cleveland native Johnny Kilbane dies at the age of 68

June

  • June 1, 1965: Plain Dealer copy editor, Robert Manry, leaves port in Falmouth, Massachusetts, sailing his 13-1/2 foot boat, “Tinkerbelle,” to England.
  • June 2, 1869: The Forest Citys, one of Cleveland's early baseball teams, plays the first professional baseball game in Cleveland, losing 25-6 against the Cincinnati Red Stockings in front of 2,000 spectators.
  • June 3, 1938: Cleveland's first drive-in movie theater opens on Northfield Rd. across from Thisteldown Race Track with uniformed ushers on hand to clean windshields.
  • June 4, 1974: Ten cent beer night at Cleveland Municipal Stadium is disrupted in the 9th inning by unruly fans stumbling onto the field, while others threw bottles from the stands. The Indians forfeited the game to the Texas Rangers.
  • June 5, 1854: Ohio City, once an independent municipality bordered by Lake Erie on the north, the Cuyahoga River on the east, W. 44th St. on the south; and W. 65th St. on the west is annexed to Cleveland.
  • June 6, 1916: The Cleveland Museum of Art opens to the public for the first time. The museum, designed by the Cleveland firm of Hubbell and Benes, was built on property donated by Jeptha Wade I at a cost of $1.25 million, money bequethed for the purpose by Hinman B. Hurlbut, John Huntington, and Horace Kelly. Today, it is one of the nation's top museums and is renown the world over for the high quality of its collections.
  • June 7, 1909: Showcasing the products of Cleveland industries, the Cleveland Industrial Exposition opens to record attendance.
  • June 8, 1919: Under the direction of Nikolai Sokoloff, the Cleveland Orchestra finishes its first season having performed a total 27 concerts; 20 in Cleveland, at Gray's Armory and 7 out of town. Long considered one of America's great orchestras, the Cleveland Orchestra stands today among the world's most-revered symphonic ensembles.
  • June 9, 1993: The Cleveland Museum of Art's 72nd May Show, a juried exhibition of painting, sculpture and a variety of media by artists of Ohio's Western Reserve, opens with 105 works by 101 artists in the special exhibition gallery on the museum's main floor. A fixture on Cleveland's art calendar, this show would be the last for the annual exhibition.
  • June 10, 1899: Bargaining for better wages and working conditions, 850 workers for the Big Consolidated Line of the Cleveland Electrical Railway Company vote to strike. Rioting ensues across Cleveland as police attempt to keep mobs from damaging the streetcars and attacking the nonunion men employed by the company to keep the streetcars running during the strike.
  • June 11, 1984: After years of performing in cavernous Public Hall on its annual spring visits to Cleveland, The New York Metropolitan Opera opens in a more intimate setting at the State Theater with a performance of Benjamin Britten's Peter Grimes.
  • June 12, 1936: The Republication National Convention of 1936 convenes for the last day at Cleveland's Public Hall where Kansas governor, Alfred Landon, is nominated as the GOP candidate for U.S. President. The convention brought 13,000 visitors into town, 1,001 delegates, their alternates, campaign workers, reporters, and committeemen.
  • June 13, 1965: Fenn College holds commencement ceremonies for its very last graduating class at Severance Hall. Later that year on September 1, Fenn College would become Cleveland State University.
  • June 14, 1930: The Garden Club of Greater Cleveland holds a French Street Fair in front of the Art Museum to raise funds for a garden center. The purpose of the proposed Garden Center of Greater Cleveland would be to provide a place “where knowledge and appreciation of gardening and horticulture are promoted.” The center would later change its name in 1994 to the Cleveland Botanical Garden becoming the country's oldest civic garden center.
  • June 15, 1929: Distinguished inventor Charles Brush dies in Cleveland at the age of 79. Inventor of the arc light and holder of 50 patents, Brush formed the Brush Electric Company in 1880, which after being bought by Thomson Houston Electric Co., became a part of General Electric. He is buried in Lake View Cemetery.
  • June 16, 1918: Socialist leader, Eugene V. Debs delivers an anitwar speech in the city of Canton, eventually landing him on trial in Cleveland for violating the Espionage Act. The jury for the United States v. Eugene V. Debs ulitmately finds Debs guilty on 3 counts and sentences him to 10 years imprisonment. He was pardoned by President Warren Harding in 1921.
  • June 17, 1982: Citing a depressed economy and losses in advertising, Cleveland businessman Joseph E. Cole announces that the Cleveland Press will cease publication as Cleveland's only afternoon daily. The final edition would appear that afternoon, ending a nearly 104-year run for the newspaper.
  • June 18, 1854: Edward W. Scripps, founder of the Cleveland Press is born near Rushville, Illinois. Moving to Cleveland in 1878, he started the Penny Press, a small, affordable, politically independant afternoon daily, which would later be called the Cleveland Press in 1889. Scripps took the formula to dozens of other cities, building one of the first newspaper chains under common ownership.
  • June 19, 1977: Major league's first African American manager, Frank Robinson is fired as manager for the Cleveland Indians.
  • June 20, 1904: The city of Cleveland adopts Building Code Ordinances 46388-A and 4404-A, the first modern comprehensive building code in the nation and a model for many other cities across the country.
  • June 21, 1985: Hector Boiardi, known to millions as Chef Boy-ar-dee, dies in Parma, Ohio at the age of 88. He came to Cleveland in 1917 to work as a chef at the Hotel Winton, where he gained acclaim throughout the midwest for his spaghetti dinners. Along with his wife, he opened the Giardino d'Italia, his first restaurant in 1924 where patrons would ask him for samples and recipes of his spaghetti sauce. By 1928 demand for the chef's products grew to such an extent that factory production was required to fill orders. Chef Boy-ar-dee Quality Foods was born.
  • June 22, 1969: The most famous of several Cuyahoga River fires occurs, this one leading to Clean Water Act of 1972.
  • June 23, 1950: Cleveland Indians first baseman rookie Luscious “Luke” Easter slugs a baseball into the upper deck, a distance measured to be 477 ft. from home plate. This is considered to be the longest home run hit at Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
  • June 24, 1812: John O'Mic is executed by hanging for the murder of trapper Daniel Buell. This is the first execution and only public hanging in Cleveland. Read more about early executions in Cleveland.
  • June 25, 1954: Musicarnival, one of the first tent theaters in the U.S. opens for its first of 21 seasons. Located on Warrensville Center Rd. in Warrensville Heights, the theater is used for performances of musicals, operettas and operas as well as for musical guests ranging from Dave Brubeck to Led Zeppelin.
  • June 26, 1893: Legendary Cleveland television newscaster Dorothy Fuldheim is born in Passaic, New Jersey. She moved to Cleveland with her husband in the 1920s where she pursued a career in lecturing and also gained experience in radio. Fuldheim joined Cleveland's first television station, WEWS in 1947 and became the first woman in the country with her own news show.
  • June 27, 2002: In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court upholds the constitutionality of an Ohio law providing vouchers to Cleveland students to attend the public or private, schools of their choice, including parochial.
  • June 28, 1976: Thieves grabbed $402 after breaking into the Fraternal Order of Police offices on Payne Ave., less than two blocks from Cleveland's Central Police Station. They pried open soft drink and cigarette machines, rifled file cabinets and damaged an air conditioner. P.D.
  • June 29, 1930: The Cleveland Union Terminal and Terminal Tower has its formal opening. Designed by Chicago Architects Graham, Anderson, Probst & White, the Cleveland Union Terminal was designed to be the union passenger station for railroad trains entering Cleveland after 1930. The project included a complex of office buildings, a hotel, department store, and post office; all capped by the Terminal Tower, then the tallest building between New York City and Chicago at 708 feet.
  • June 30, 1971: The musical movie, 'Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory' premieres at the Mayland Theater in Mayfield Heights. Based on a Roald Dahl children's book, the film features Cleveland native and Cleveland Play House alum, Peter Ostrum, as lead character Charlie Bucket.

July

  • July 1, 1925: Cleveland Municipal (Cleveland-Hopkins International) Airport records its first flight as a night mail plane lands at the newly constructed facility, the first municipally-owned airport in the United States.
  • July 2, 1994: 1,500 Clevelanders gather on Public Square at ceremonies marking the 100th birthday of the Solders' and Sailors' Monument. The monument, designed by Levi T. Scofield and dedicated on July 4, 1894, is the city's major Civil War memorial and stands a total height of 125 feet.
  • July 3, 1931: Heavyweight champion Max Schmeling beats Young Stribling on a TKO in the 10th round at the first heavyweight championship in Cleveland and the first sporting event at the newly completed Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
  • July 4, 1954: Marilyn Reese Sheppard is found murdered in her Bay Village home, sparking one of Cleveland's more sensational crime scene investigations and trials. Read more about the Sheppard case.
  • July 5, 1976: Cleveland honors the nation's bicentennial with many activities including the dedication of a replica of Lorenzo Carter's log cabin at Settler's Landing. Carter was Cleveland's first permanent settler, arriving in Cleveland on May 2, 1797.
  • July 6, 1931: Clarence Crane, Cleveland millionaire, chocolate manufacturer and inventor of the candy “Life Savers” dies. In 1912, Crane developed a new type of hard peppermint candy that did not melt in the hot summer months. First utilizing a machine that pharmacists use to make round flat pills, he would then punch a whole in the middle of it to create its unique life preserver shape.
  • July 7, 1948: Legendary pitcher and Baseball Hall of Famer, Leroy “Satchel” Paige is signed by the Cleveland Indians at age 42. This makes Paige the oldest rookie in major-league history.
  • July 8, 1935: A crowd of 69,381 at Cleveland's Municipal Stadium watch as the American League triumphs over the National League at the 1935 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
  • July 9, 1982: After 9 months of restoration costing $4 million, the Ohio Theater reopens as the new home of the Great Lakes Theater Festival with a production of William Shakespeare's, As You Like It. (ECH)
  • July 10, 1914: Superman co-creator Joe Shuster is born in Toronto. In 1923, his family moved to Cleveland where Shuster attended Glenville High School and befriended his future Superman collaborator, Jerry Siegel. While Siegel developed the storylines for Superman, it was Shuster who did the drawing.
  • July 11, 1976: Seeking her second Olympic gold medal in the 800-meter run, local track star, Madeline Manning Jackson is named captain of the U.S. women's track team for the 21st summer games in Montreal.
  • July 12, 1978: The Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival opens its season at Lakewood Civic Auditorium with a lively, colorful, and very physical production of Two Gentlemen of Verona. As the production opens, Valentine, played by Holmes Osborne, and Proteus, played by Tom Hanks, are tilting at two dummies with padded sticks while riding in from opposite ends of the stage perched on the shoulders of their servants. Tom Hanks would later earn the Cleveland Drama Critics Award for his comedic turn.
  • July 13, 1954: Cleveland Indians player Al Rosen shines for a crowd of 68,751 at the Major League All-Star Game held in Cleveland's Municipal Stadium. Rosen hit 2 home runs and drove in 5 runs, tying an All-Star Game record and helping the American League to an 11-9 victory over the National League.
  • July 14, 1985: The Cleveland Cinemathèque, Cleveland's alternative film theatre featuring non-mainstream foreign and American films as well as movie classics, debuts with a screening of Bertrand Tavernier's A Week's Vacation in Case Western Reserve's Strosacker Auditorium.
  • July 15, 1959: Ernest Bloch, founder and first director of the Cleveland Institute of Music dies at the age of 79. Bloch was also an internationally known composer, conductor and teacher who composed over 100 works and won many arwards including the gold medal of the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1942. His memory is honored in 1955 with a bronze statue in the Hebrew Cultural Garden in Rockefeller Park.
  • July 16, 1810: The General Assembly of Ohio approves an act calling for the organization of the county of Cuyahoga.
  • July 17, 1865: The U.S. General Hospital at Cleveland, a Civil War Army hospital located in Brooklyn Twp., closes after treating approximately 3,030 wounded Union soldiers as well as 2 Confederate prionsers.
  • July 18, 1966: is a summer of unrest in the city as the Hough neighborhood in Cleveland breaks out into violence sparked by a dispute at a café on Hough Ave and E. 79th St. that escalates into vandalism, looting, arson and gunfire. Unable to control the situation with police, Mayor Ralph Locher calls in the National Guard to restore order. Read more about the Hough Riots.
  • July 19, 1896: Cleveland begins its celebration of the 100th anniversary of Moses Cleaveland's landing in 1796 with the early ringing of Trinity Church bells followed by a day of services. A massive 70-foot tall centennial arch was constructed over Superior Ave, just north of the newly completed Soldiers and Sailors Monument especially for the celebration that would include events through September 10th, ending with a nighttime reenactment of the Battle of Lake Erie in commemoration of Oliver Hazard Perry's victory at the Battle of Lake Erie.
  • July 20, 1925: Located in North Randall, Thistledown Race Track, built by John H. McMillen, opens for its first racing season.
  • July 21, 1899: Poet Hart Crane is born in Garretsville, Ohio. Moving to Cleveland in 1909, he later published his first poem when he was a student at East High and briefly worked as a reporter for the Plain Dealer as a young adult. Crane is best remembered for his most famous collection of poems, The Bridge. Suffering from depression and alcoholism, On Dec. 27, 1932, Crane committed suicide by jumping off a steamship sailing from Mexico to New York. His body was never found. Read Hart Crane in Akron and Cleveland 1919-1923 by Olivier Alexis.
  • July 22, 1796: Moses Cleaveland and his surveying party arrive at the mouth of the Cuyahoga River, and choose the location as the “capital city” of the Connecticut Western Reserve.
  • July 23, 1968: Cleveland erupts in violence as the Glenville Shootout begins resulting in the death of 7 and the wounding of 15. Find out more.
  • July 24, 1916: One of a series of tragedies which routinely befell workmen digging water tunnels under Lake Erie, this Waterworks Tunnel Disaster witnessed the heroic efforts of Garrett Morgan and his brother to rescue the overcome workers, employing Morgan's newly-invented gas mask.
  • July 25, 1854: Clevelanders are treated to a performance of Donizetti's opera, Lucia di Lammermoor by Luigi Adriti's Italian Opera Co. at the Atheneum.
  • July 26, 1884: The first electric streetcar runs in Cleveland, as the East Cleveland Railway Company operates a car for one mile on Garden Street (Central Avenue) to Quincy, touting it as “the first electric railroad for public use in America.”
  • July 27, 1963: African American inventor and businessman, Garrett Morgan, dies in Cleveland at the age of 86. Best known for his invention of the traffic light, as well as an early gas mask, Morgan was very active in Cleveland's black community and he is buried in Lake View Cemetery.
  • July 28, 1936: Tickets range from $3 to 25 cents for the Metropolitan Opera's open-air performance of “Aida” as Opera Week begins at Cleveland's Municipal Stadium.
  • July 29, 1921: Cy Young and other ex-Indians as far back as 1870 beat a rival team of sand-lotters 11-6 in an exhibition game celebrating Cleveland's 125th anniversary.
  • July 30, 1970: George Szell, internationally renowned conductor and music director of the Cleveland Orchestra, dies at the age of 73. As music director for the Cleveland Orchestra from 1946 until his death, Szell is credited for building the orchestra into one of the finest in the world.
  • July 31, 1932: The Cleveland Indians play their first game at Municipal Stadium, losing to the Philadelphia Athletics 0-1 as Mickey Cochrane's RBI single ended the pitcher's duel between Cleveland's Mel Harder and Philly's Lefty Grove.

August

  • August 1, 1999: Cleveland and eastern suburbs endure power outages from severe thunderstorms that hit the area the day before. The hottest day of summer to date contributed to the storms that cut power to more than 70,000 people in the area and clocked wind gusts up to 69 mph at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.
  • August 2, 1939: Horror film director, Wes Craven is born in Cleveland. His film credits include Nightmare on Elm Street and Scream.
  • August 3, 1795: The Treaty of Greenville opens the eastern half of the Western Reserve for settlement and makes the Cuyahoga River the western boundary of the United States.
  • August 4, 1999: Cleveland welcomes over 10,00 young athletes for the AAU Junior Olympics. Events scheduled for the day include field hockey, girls basketball, gymnastics, soccer, and tennis.
  • August 5, 1914:The first traffic light is installed at Euclid Ave and E 105th St. in downtown Cleveland. The traffic light was invented by Garrett Morgan, an important inventor and businessman active in the affairs of Cleveland's black community. Find out more about notable African Americans of Cleveland
  • August 6, 1880: Bequeathed from a portion of Leonard Case Jr.'s estate, the Case School of Applied Science is incorporated.
  • August 7, 1956: Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., first visits Cleveland as the leader of the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott.
  • August 8, 1981: A record crowd of 72,086 at Cleveland's Municipal Stadium watch as Major League Baseball's American League hands the National League its 10th consecutive win at the 1981 All-Star Game.
  • August 9, 2001: State representative Mary Rose Oakar officially throws her hat into the ring as candidate for the Mayor of Cleveland. Other mayoral candidates include Jane Campbell and Tim McCormack.
  • August 10, 1999: The Cuyahoga County Fair continues its 103-year tradition with some new twists. There is bungee jumping, swing dancing, an all-day polka-thon and Jungle Bob's traveling zoo. Of course, there are still the mainstays: games, rides, the demolition derby, and pig racing. See images of past Cuyahoga County fairs
  • August 11, 1897: The Elizabeth Bryant Center opens as the Cleveland Home for Aged Colored People. It was the first nonreligious institution sponsored by African Americans in Cleveland.
  • August 12, 1855: The First Presbyterian Church (Old Stone Church) is dedicated on Public Square.
  • August 13, 1978: 120,264 Clevelanders go to the polls to decide whether Cleveland mayor, Dennis Kucinich, the youngest mayor in Cleveland history, should be removed from office. With less than 50.1 percent in the mayor's favor, the recall fails.
  • August 14, 2003:Power lines go dead across northern Ohio, southern Ontario, and seven other states leaving 50 million people without electrical service, for some up to four days. Problems with two transmission lines, one originating in Cuyahoga County, set in motion a chain of events that lead to the historic blackout.
  • August 15, 1950: The Indians make their first triple play at Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
  • August 16, 1989: Improvements to Freenet, Cleveland's free public community computer system envisioned by CWRU's Dr. Thomas M. Grundner, now provide Internet service.
  • August 17, 1965: Cleveland Plain Dealer editor, Robert Manry, reaches land in Falmouth England aboard his 13.5-foot sailboat, Tinkerbelle, and completes his 78-day voyage across the Altantic Ocean. Find out more about his arduous journey.
  • August 18, 1873: The Lake Shore & Tuscarawas Valley Railway formally opens. The 101-miles line links up Lorain, Ohio in the north with Uhrichsville, OH in the south. Find out more about Railroad History in Cleveland Memory
  • August 19, 2001: Forget bikes and skateboards. Razor scooters are the preferred means of transportation for kids in the area this summer.
  • August 20, 1999: The city braces for a Ku Klux Klan rally that is to be held downtown the next day. The security measures to ensure the safety of the city, rallyers and protesters will cost the city $332,353 according to Mayor Michael R. White.
  • August 21, 1953: Frank D. Celebrezze, former Cleveland municipal court judge, safety director, and assistant county prosecutor, dies at the age of 54. Having successfully spear-headed a drive to break up racket operations in Cleveland, he later went on to replace Elliott Ness as safety director in 1942. Find out more about Italian Americans in Cleveland history.
  • August 22, 1901: Vernon Stouffer is born in Cleveland. After graduating from the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania in 1923, he returned home to help manage his father's thriving lunch business in Cleveland's Arcade. This lunch business would eventually grow into Stouffer's Corp., whose operations include a nationwide chain of restaurants, motor inns, frozen prepared foods, and food-service management.
  • August 23, 1957: Northfield Park opens as a venue for harness-racing. The opening night card that Friday offered nine races with the first race a class D trot won by Bunter's Boy in 2:12, driven by Bill Popfinger.
  • August 24, 1919: Cleveland Indians pitcher Ray Caldwell is flattened by a bolt of lightning in his debut with the team. He recovers to get the final out of the game, and defeats the Philadelphia Athletics 2-1.
  • August 25, 1936: Celebrations for Olympic gold medal winner and former East Tech High track star, Jesse Owens begin in Cleveland as he is paraded from the East Cleveland train station, where he arrived, to Public Hall, where he is greeted by more than 4,000 fans. See the photo.
  • August 26, 1954: The Indians raise their record to 90-35 as Early Wynn pitches a two-hitter for a 2-1 victory against the Washington Senators.
  • August 27, 1976: An armed Vietnam war veteran surrenders to the police and frees nine hostages unharmed after holding them for nine hours in a suite of offices on the 36th floor of the Terminal Tower Building.
  • August 28, 1964: WEWS-TV Channel 5's rock and roll dance show, “The Big 5 Show” debuts with host Don Webster. Webster, previously working in Canada, was brought in as host by independent television producer, Herman Spero. The show went into national syndication as “The Upbeat Show” in 1966, with appearances by such acts as Sonny and Cher, the Supremes, and Steppenwolf.
  • August 29, 1982: Thermometers fall to 38° F, the lowest temperature ever recorded for Cleveland in August at the time.
  • August 30, 1976: A federal appeals court stopped the Strongsville school board from banning works from school libraries and as textbooks. Four years earlier, the board had purged two books by Kurt Vonnegut and Joseph Heller's Catch-22. The court held that “A library is a mighty resource in a free marketplace of ideas.”
  • August 31, 1976: Federal Judge Frank Batisti rules in Reed vs. Rhodes, the Cleveland public school desegregation case, that the schools had practiced racial segregation.

September

  • September 1, 1995: The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame opens on the lakefront between Municipal Stadium and E. 9th St. of downtown Cleveland. Designed by reknown architect I.M. Pei, the Rock Hall opened on Labor Day with a 7 1/2 hour rock concert held at Municipal Stadium.
  • September 2, 1795: The Connecticut Land Company purchases the Western Reserve from the State of Connecticut for $1,200,000.
  • September 3, 1976: Bishop William M. Cosgrove, the leading architect of the Cleveland Catholic Diocese's social action program for eight years, was named bishop of the Belleview, Ill., diocese by Pope Paul VI. He had been a priest in the Cleveland diocese for 33 years and auxiliary bishop for eight. Cosgrove died in 1992. A diocesan social service building on Superior Ave. is named in his honor.
  • September 4, 1994: Cleveland Browns punter Tom Tupa scores the first two-point conversion in NFL history, running in a faked extra point attempt for the Browns in a game against the Cincinnati Bengals in the first week of the 1994 season. He scored a total of three such conversions that season, earning him the nickname “Two Point Tupa.”
  • September 5, 1997: The Cleveland Indians stage their first “I hate the Yankees Hanky Night” at Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
  • September 6, 1949: Captain Billy Odem crashes his plane in Berea, killing himself and two people on the ground and canceling the National Air Races in Cleveland. See images from past Air Races.
  • September 7, 1986: The Cleveland Browns becomes the first team in NFL history to have a play reviewed by instant replay, Chicago 41, Browns 31.
  • September 8, 1949: Amelda C. Adams teacher, author and lecturer, dies at the age of 84. She lost her sight at the age of 6 months, but overcame this disability to become one of the founders of the Cleveland Music School Settlement.
  • September 9, 1860: The Perry Monument, honoring Oliver Hazard Perry's defeat of the British in the Battle of Lake Erie, is dedicated in Public Square.
  • September 10, 1953: A series of explosions believed to have been caused by sewer gases rip up a one mile stretch of West 117th St. from Lake Ave. south to Berea Rd. The explosions leave one women dead and over 60 others injured and destroys automobiles and property all along the eastern border of Lakewood. See photos of the explosion.
  • September 11, 2001: Responding to terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, D.C., government leaders throughout Greater Cleveland shut down city halls and courthouses at midday, hoping to protect people in case terrorists took aim at the region's public buildings. Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White evacuated City Hall, the Cleveland Convention Center, the Justice Center and other buildings. At his request, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, the Great Lakes Science Center, Tower City Center, Key Tower and the Galleria closed. The sudden rush of workers driving home created gridlock downtown.
  • September 12, 1999: The “new” Cleveland Browns face the Pittsburgh Steelers in their regular season opener at the new Browns Stadium.
  • September 13, 1995: Opponents of the Indians' Chief Wahoo logo will be able to continue their protests through baseball's post-season play outside of Jacobs Field. The protesters, who want the baseball team to change its name and its logo because they find it racist and insulting, must give Gateway seven days' advance notice of planned demonstrations. The group can place 30 protesters on Gateway Plaza, between Jacobs Field and Gund Arena, and 40 in a grassy park area at Eagle Ave. and E. 9th St.
  • September 14, 1975: A study financed by the Cleveland City Council concluded that inefficient management, a padded work force and poor equipment maintenance had contributed to the decline of the Municipal Light Plant (predecessor of Cleveland Public Power). The plant was producing less power than three years earlier and running a $6 million debt.
  • September 15, 1964: The Beatles, on their first tour of the United States, play to an enthusiastic crowd at Public Auditorium in Cleveland.
  • September 16, 1975: After eight months of negotiations, the former Sheraton-Cleveland Hotel on Public Square was sold to Thomas Lloyd of Cambridge, Ohio, for $4 million. He planned to spend up to $7 million on renovations, but the hotel went into receivership the next year. Browns owner Art Modell led 14 investors in rescuing it in 1977. It is now the Stouffer Renaissance Cleveland Hotel.
  • September 17, 1976: The board of trustees of the Cleveland Public Library designates six architects to draw designs for renovation of three branch libraries and construction of three new libraries. The projects are part of a five-year library building program financed by a levy passed the previous November.
  • September 18, 1954: Cleveland Indians clinch the American league pennant setting a record for most regular-season victories with 111. Unfortunately, they go on to lose the World Series to the New York Giants in a 4-game sweep
  • September 19, 2003: Professional women's Cleveland basketball team, the Rockers, is discontinued and disbanded due to declining home game attendance and financial losses.
  • September 20, 2000: The 25th anniversary season of the Cleveland San Jose Ballet is cancelled as the ballet's board of trustees decide to shut it down permanently and liquidate all assets in order to pay about $1 million that is owed to creditors, dancers and staff.
  • September 21, 1968: The Sterling-Linder (earlier known as Sterling-Linder-Davis) Department Store on at Euclid Ave. and E. 13th St. closes its doors for the final time. It was famous for its 60-foot Christmas tree display during the holiday season. Find out more about Cleveland's Golden Age of Downtown Shopping
  • September 22, 1936: With over 70,000 marchers and lasting 11 hours, the greatest parade in American Legion history at the time winds it way along Euclid Ave to East 22nd St., ending at Cleveland Stadium.
  • September 23, 1935: Two dismembered bodies were found together in the Kingsbury Run area. These would be the first two of 12 serial killings committed between Sept. 1935 and Aug. 1938 in or near the Kingsbury Run area. The murderer was never found. Find out more about the Kingsbury Run Torso Murders.
  • September 24, 1907: Stella Godfrey White Bigham is born. A community activist and columnist for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, she was the first woman to serve on the board of the Cleveland Transit System (now RTA).
  • September 25, 1977: Legal costs connected with the Cleveland school desegregation case were reaching $1 million and were expected to reach three times that amount when all the bills were in.
  • September 26, 1975: The price of regular gasoline went down a penny a gallon at company-operated Standard Oil Co. (Ohio) service stations. Responding to what it termed competitive pressures, Sohio cut its price to 58.9 cents per gallon. The decrease applied only to the Cleveland area market and other metropolitan areas of Ohio. Sohio, later bought by BP America, was the state's leading gasoline company at the time.
  • September 27, 1975: RTA announces it will study ways to cooperate with Amtrak, possibly aiding the return of passenger trains to the Cleveland Union Terminal, the hub of rapid transit. Amtrak was soon to begin a Boston-Cleveland-Chicago route and was building a new lakefront station. Amtrak officials contended returning to the terminal would cost too much for only two daily trains and did not make the move.
  • September 28, 1969: Euclid Beach Park closes its doors forever. Incorporated back in 1894, all that remains of the park today is the carved archway entrance, a historic Cleveland landmark. See images of Euclid Beach Park.
  • September 29, 1977: Last-minute legislative efforts in Columbus fail to bail out Cleveland schools from a financial crunch, threatening to close the state's largest school district the following month. Three weeks later, U.S. District Judge Frank J. Battisti orders the schools to stay open even though the Board of Education says the system had run out of money.
  • September 30, 1999: Case Western Reserve University closes the original Cleveland Freenet. Freenet was a free public community computer system, the first of its kind in the world.

October

  • October 1, 1796: Amos Stafford, a surveyor for the Connecticut Land Company, creates the first map detailing Cleveland's original plan.
  • October 2, 1954: The New York Giants sweep the Cleveland Indians in the 51st World Series.
  • October 3, 1993: Former Clevelander Bob Hope sings “Thanks for the Memory” at the last baseball game ever played at Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
  • October 4, 1977: Republican Mayor Ralph J. Perk's six-year reign at Cleveland City Hall came to an end as he finished third in a primary election, leaving Municipal Court Clerk Dennis J. Kucinich and State Rep. Edward F. Feighan, both Democrats, to face each other in a runoff. Kucinich was elected the next month. (P.D.)
  • October 5, 1908: Technical High School (now East Technical High School) opens as the first public trade school in the Greater Cleveland area and one of only 5 technical high schools in the country.
  • October 6, 1977: Danny Greene (aka the Irishman), a major figure in Cleveland racketeering, dies when a bomb hidden in a car parked next to him explodes in a parking lot at the Brainard Place office building in Lyndhurst. Greene had just finished up with a dental appointment to correct a loose filling. Read more about Danny Greene.
  • October 7, 1975: Cleveland Mayor Ralph J. Perk's proposal to build a $100 million parking garage and monorail system would violate a new transit agreement, Regional Transit Authority officials said. Perk applied for federal aid to build an elevated “people mover” through downtown connected to garages on its periphery. Some critics said the plan was too costly and promoted more use of cars. Perk's successor, Dennis J. Kucinich, later killed the people mover plan.(P.D.)
  • October 8, 1946: Dennis Kucinich is born in Cleveland. He served as the 53rd mayor of Cleveland.
  • October 9, 1960: The municipal airport located at Cleveland's lakefront is dedicated in honor of Thomas Burke, who had made major improvements to it during his 4-term tenure as Cleveland's 48th mayor (1946-1953). Burke Lakefront Airport, built on landfill in 1947, was the first downtown airport in the country.
  • October 10, 1915: 100,000 fans turn out for an amateur baseball game in Brookside Park.
  • October 11, 1948: The Cleveland Indians defeat the Boston Braves 4 to 3 at Braves Field in game 6 of the World Series to become the 1948 world champions.
  • October 12, 1922: Ignoring popular sentiment, city officials order Astor House, long considered to be Cleveland's oldest structure, to be destroyed. Generally believed to have been built in the 1780s as a trading post by the Northwestern Fur Co., the authenticity of the structure was never established.
  • October 13, 1975: Dedication ceremonies are held in the courtyard of the Western Campus of Cuyahoga County Community College. The new $30 million facility is located at 11000 Pleasant Valley in Parma. Dedication ceremonies include brief remarks by education leaders, presentation of a Bicentennial flag to Western Campus students, campus tours and an informal reception.
  • October 14, 1975: A week after President Gerald Ford signed a bill opening the nation's three major service academies to women, Lila E. Schwartz of Parma is nominated by Rep. Ronald M. Mottl to attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. The Normandy High School student is believed to be the first woman nominated from Ohio. (P.D.)
  • October 15, 1999: Crews across Greater Cleveland repair power lines and clear debris after a sudden storm the day before leaves 120,000 customers of FirstEnergy and about 10,800 of Cleveland Public Power without service. Temperatures the day before dropped from a high of 72 degrees at 4 p.m. to 54 degrees less than an hour later and wind gusts of over 70 mph toppled trees and power lines across Northeast Ohio.
  • October 16, 1975: The $2.6 million Snow Road Bridge, under construction in Brook Park for four years, finally opens to traffic - two years late. The bridge enables vehicles to move between Interstate 71 and Cleveland Hopkins International Airport at the Berea Freeway without coping with a maze of railroad tracks and highways. The bridge builder ran into welding problems on the unique design, and the state assessed $153,600 in late penalties. (P.D.)
  • October 17, 1914: Superman co-creator Jerry Siegel is born in Cleveland. Siegel attended Glenville High School where he wrote for the school newspaper, the Glenville Torch and collaborated with Joe Shuster to create the legendary superhero.
  • October 18, 1796: Moses Cleaveland leads his surveying party home to Connecticut following their first year of work laying out the Western Reserve and the new townsite which bears his name.
  • October 19, 1976: The State Board of Education tells state school officials to prepare a desegregation plan for Cleveland suburbs as well as the city itself. A federal court ruling had ordered that a desegregation plan be drawn up. However, several board members said a suburban plan would involve transferring inner-city children to suburban schools. The plan eventually adopted involved busing students only within the city. (P.D.)
  • October 20, 1944: A storage tank containing liquid natural gas built by the East Ohio Gas Co. explodes killing 135 and leaving 3,600 homeless. It was the most disastrous fire in Cleveland's history. Find out more about Cleveland Disasters.
  • October 21, 1976: First Lady Betty Ford comes to Cleveland to campaign for her husband in the closing weeks of the presidential campaign. She is greeted at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport by Mayor Ralph J. Perk, Republican leaders and 25 local GOP candidates. She tells a Lakewood audience that President Ford is a man of peace and a friend of the taxpayer. (P.D.)
  • October 22, 1995: Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White withdraws his support for a downtown subway, a key component of the Regional Transit Authority's Dual Hub plan to link downtown with University Circle. The mayor, instead, is pushing construction of an elaborate busway along Euclid Ave. to connect the two areas. The move effectively kills RTA's dream of a downtown subway. RTA originally wanted a subway-trolley from Tower City to University Circle, then later suggested replacing the trolley segment with a busway. Political leaders across the region say both plans are unnecessary and too expensive. (P.D.)
  • October 23, 1894: Euclid Beach Park is incorporated by a group of Cleveland investors who pattern the park after Coney Island in New York.
  • October 24, 1976: The Playhouse Square Association, which has been packing the State Theatre by offering free performances of “The All Night Strut,” prepares to expand the five-night schedule to seven nights a week. The show is among the association's major efforts, led by Ray Shepardson, to restore the old theaters to their former glory and attract people back to Playhouse Square. (P.D.)
  • October 25, 1890: University School beats Central High 20-0 in the first high school football game in Cleveland's history.
  • October 26, 1974: The Coliseum at Richfield, located about halfway between Cleveland and Akron, opens as home for the Cavaliers, the Crunch (soccer) and the Crusaders (hockey) as well as a venue for musical concerts. It was one of the first indoor arenas to have luxury boxes. The Colisuem was torn down in 1999.
  • October 27, 1923: Award-winning actress Ruby Dee is born in Cleveland. Born Ruby Ann Wallace, she appeared in over fifty films and was nominated twice for Academy Awards. She and her husband, Ossie Davis, were jointly awarded the National Medal of Arts in 1995, and are both inductees in the Theater Hall of Fame and the NAACP Hall of Fame.
  • October 28, 1912: The City Club of Cleveland, “Cleveland's Citadel of Free Speech,” is incorporated under the laws of Ohio.
  • October 29, 1942: Poet, publisher, and painter d.a. levy (Darryl Allen Levy) is born on the near west side of Cleveland. A fighter for free expression and against social injustice and repression, Levy brought the counterculture to Cleveland during the 1960s. Find out more about d.a. levy.
  • October 30, 1995: Thousands of Cleveland baseball fans drop whatever they normally do on a Monday to make a pilgrimage to Public Square for one last hurrah for the 1995 Indians. The Indians won the American League pennant, but fell to the Atlanta Braves 4 games to 2 during the World Series.
  • October 31, 1948: Operating from the NBC Bldg. on Superior Ave. at E. 9th St., WBNK TV channel 4 begins broadcasting in Cleveland with an NBC network show, “Television Playhouse”.

November

  • November 1, 1968: The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) is founded by Marjorie Talalay and Nina Sundell as “Cleveland's forum for interpreting culture through contemporary visual art.”
  • November 2, 2012: The West Side Market, Cleveland's oldest publicly owned market, celebrates the centennial of its opening in its new bigger market house designed by Hubbell and Benes.
  • November 3, 1964: Cleveland mayor, Ralph S. Locher bans the Beatles and similar singing groups from performing at Public Hall because, according to Locher, “Such groups do not add to the community's culture or entertainment.” The ban would go into effect immediately following the appearance of the Rolling Stones that night.
  • November 4, 1975: Election day and Cleveland Mayor Ralph J. Perk easily wins his third term, defeating challenger Arnold R. Pinkney. Councilman Dennis J. Kucinich is elected clerk of municipal court, positioning him to run for mayor in two years.
  • November 5, 1962: The Plain Dealer reports that “WDGO-FM, the classical music station, has petitioned the Federal Communications Commission to have its call letters changed to WCLV. It expects to get permission to use the new designation today. Robert Conrad, stations manager, gave this explanation for the requested change: 'We think WCLV will identify us better ... And some of our listeners address us as WDOG and even WGOD.”
  • November 6, 1922: The Palace Theatre on Playhouse Square opens as a venue for vaudeville productions, with two shows a day. Performers who graced the stage included George Burns and Gracie Allen as well as a young Bob Hope
  • November 7, 1851: The “Swedish nightingale”, Jenny Lind performs before a crowd of 1,125 at Kelly's Hall.
  • November 8, 1976: American Municipal Power-Ohio, which represents more than 80 publicly owned electric utilities around the state, is interested in buying the Cleveland Municipal Light Plant. In a letter to city officials, AMP-O asks that a proposed sale of Muny Light to the Cleveland Electric Illuminating Co. be held in abeyance so a competing offer could be made. But there is no sale. Muny Light, now Cleveland Public Power, remains city-owned. (P.D.)
  • November 9, 1993: Browns players and Cleveland fans are stunned, angry and sad over the release of quarterback Bernie Kosar the day before by Browns coach Bill Belichick, ending Kosar's eight-year career with the team.
  • November 10, 1937: Cleveland Arena, located at 3717 Euclid Ave., opens with a production of the Ice Follies of 1938. Devoted to sporting events, the Arena was home ice for the Cleveland Barons hockey team, but was also the site of the Moondog Coronation Ball, the first rock'n'roll concert in 1952. After the construction of the Richfield Coliseum in 1974, the Arena no longer hosted major events and was demolished in 1977.
  • November 11, 1864: George W. Crile, surgeon, researcher, and a founder of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, is born in Chili, Ohio. He is reputed to have performed the first successful human blood transfusion at St. Alexis Hospital Medical Center in 1906.
  • November 12, 1977: Cleveland's Mayor-elect Dennis J. Kucinich announces his Cabinet would be a mix of a youthful corps of loyal political mavericks and outspoken government professionals. The Cabinet would contain four blacks, a woman, several ethnics and three holdovers from the administration of Mayor Ralph J. Perk. Several officials would date back to the administration of Mayor Carl B. Stokes in the late 1960s. (P.D.)
  • November 13, 1940: The Cleveland Health Education Museum (now HealthSpace Cleveland) officially opens its doors as the first permanent health museum in the country. Its purpose was to portray the advances made in medical and health science and to promote personal and community hygiene.
  • November 14, 1946: The Cleveland Recording Company, Cleveland's first professional recording studio and one of the longest operating independent recording studios in the United States, is incorporated by radio announcer, Frederick Wolf.
  • November 15, 1991: The 48-foot, 45 ton sculpture, Free Stamp by Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen is inaugurated in Willard Park.
  • November 16, 1895: The Cedar-Jennings streetcar falls from the Central Viaduct into the river, killing 17 people.
  • November 17, 1919: Two pickets are shot outside American Steel and Wire by machine gun fire from inside the plant when they tried to prevent steel workers from entering the plant during the 1919 steel strike.
  • November 18, 1931: The East Cleveland Congregational Church is established from the merger of the East Congregational Church and the Mayflower Church Congregational with Rev. Howard Lee Torbet as their first pastor.
  • November 19, 1976: A federal jury awards the city of Cleveland $350,000 in a lawsuit that holds Peter Kiewit and Sons Inc., an Omaha, Nebraska construction firm, responsible for the collapse of a 120-foot section of Dock 34, between the Stadium and the E. 9th St. Pier. (P.D.)
  • November 20, 1977: Judge Paul C. Weick of the U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit tells U.S. District Judge Frank J. Battisti not to interfere with the Ohio Supreme Court's jurisdiction over school financial problems. A day earlier Battisti had told the school board and the county auditor to ignore the Supreme Court's decision requiring the school district to begin repaying $15 million in bank loans. (P.D.)
  • November 21, 2009: Cleveland television personality and pioneering exercise diva, Paige Palmer, dies at the age of 93. Known as the“First Lady of Fitness,” many Greater Cleveland stay-at-home moms tuned their televisions to Palmer's 1-hour show five days a week.
  • November 22, 1923: Ernie Anderson, also known to Clevelanders as the late night horror-movie host, Ghoulardi, is born in Lynn, Mass.
  • November 23, 1956: The foundations of Cleveland Arena are rocked as Elvis Presley performs two shows in front of thousands of screaming teenage fans.
  • November 24, 1869: The American Women's Suffragette Association convention is held at Case Hall in Cleveland. Formed as a less radical alternative to the National Woman Suffrage Association, the delegates representing 21 states included such luminaries as Susan B. Anthony, the Reverend Antoinette Brown Blackwell, Lucy Stone, Julia Ward Howe, and an early Cleveland feminist activist, Caroline Severence.
  • November 25, 1991: Station officials at WLTF-FM/106.5 get more reaction than they bargain for when they run promotions for the “Turkeys From Heaven” stunt, promising to drop “Wake-Up Club” turkeys on homes. The station is flooded with calls from angry people who believe the station intends to drop live turkeys on homes from 1,000 feet.
  • November 26, 1996: Cleveland civic leader, businesswoman, and philanthropist Ruth Ratner Miller dies at the age of 71. President of Tower City center from 1982 until her death, she was responsible for rebuilding and renovating it, turning its lower levels into a glamorous shopping center.
  • November 27, 1950: Cleveland suffers under high winds and heavy snow as day three of a freak blizzard that began Thanksgiving day paralyzes the city, making it necessary for Mayor Thomas Burke to call in the National Guard to help remove the 22.1 inches of snow.
  • November 28, 1975: Jurors deliberate six hours before finding William Kiraly, 55, guilty of aggravated arson and attempted aggravated murder in the bombing of the office-home of rackets figure Danny Greene. (P.D.)
  • November 29, 1956: 150,000 people from a dozen states are estimated to see the Sterling Linder Davis Christmas tree, which is billed as the nation's tallest indoor tree.
  • November 30, 1967: Cleveland Clinic's first coronary by-pass operation is successfully performed by Argentine surgeon, Dr. Rene G. Favaloro. Find out more about Cleveland as a pioneer in cardiac care.

December

  • December 1, 1992: Laketran, a park-and-ride service for commuters traveling from Mentor to Cleveland, unveils four coach-style buses featuring individual reading lamps, fold-down tables and reclining seats. The 46-seat buses cost a total of $930,000.
  • December 2, 1974: Gas stations and motorists file numerous reports of gasoline theft due to rising fear of a repeat of the 1973 gas embargo that kept fuel in short supply the previous winter.
  • December 3, 1982: Thermometers rise to 77 degrees F, the warmest temperature ever recorded in Cleveland in December at the time.
  • December 4, 1930: The Cleveland Botanical Garden, formerly known as the Garden Center of Greater Cleveland, is founded by members of the Garden Club of Greater Cleveland. Originally located in a boathouse at Wade Park Lagoon, today it is the oldest civic garden center in the country.
  • December 5, 1961: The central portion of the Innerbelt Freeway connecting the shoreway to Cleveland's west side finally opens after complex land-acquistion problems slowed down its construction.
  • December 6, 1991: The City of Cleveland offers free parking after 4 pm on week-days and all day on weekends at the main city-owned lots and garages downtown to encourage holiday shopping.
  • December 7, 1941: As Cleveland receives news of Japan's bombing of Pearl Harbor, Safety Director Elliot Ness announces that he has placed the city's plan of defense into effect.
  • December 8, 1974: Cleveland firefighters rescue 37 men from the Hawley Hotel downtown. The building had been a home for indigent single men. The fire killed one man and injured five.
  • December 9, 1991: It's a lean holiday shopping season as Clevelanders, like the rest of the nation, are scrimping and worrying about everything from job security to credit card debts in the face of an economic recession.
  • December 10, 1941: Henry Clay Smith, a pioneer of the black press and founder of the Cleveland Gazette dies two weeks shy of his 79th birthday. Smith was the first black candidate to run for the Republican nomination for Governor of Ohio in 1926 and 1928.
  • December 11, 1993: After local Baptist ministers call for a ban on the playing of gangsta rap, one of Cleveland's top radio stations, urban contemporary WZAK-FM/93.1, announces that it will remove it from its airwaves.
  • December 12, 1975: A former wheelman on the ill-fated Edmund Fitzgerald says that a tunnel below decks on the ore carrier was seldom sealed as it should have been and that fire and lifeboat drills were almost never held. The ex-crewman testified at a Coast Guard inquiry in Cleveland on the sinking of the Fitzgerald during a storm on Lake Superior Nov. 10. The crew of 29 was lost. (P.D.)
  • December 13, 1924: Lawrence “Larry” Eugene Doby is born. He was the first African American player in the American League, joining the Cleveland Indians on July 5, 1947, eleven weeks after Jackie Robinson joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in the National League. Doby was the second African American to serve as a manager, managing the Chicago White Sox in 1978, three years after Frank Robinson managed the Cleveland Indians.
  • December 14, 1982: Groundbreaking for the new headquarters of Standard Oil of Ohio (Sohio) takes place at its construction site on Public Square. The planned 658 feet 45 floor tower, designed by Hellmuth, Obata and Kassabaum, would become the third tallest skyscraper in Cleveland, after Key Tower (1991) and the Terminal Tower (1930). It was renamed the BP Tower when Sohio merged with British Petroleum, and renamed again to 200 Public Square when BP relocated its corporate headquarters. See construction photos.
  • December 15, 1978: Unable to repay $14 million in loans owed to 6 local banks, Cleveland becomes the first major U.S. city in financial default.
  • December 16, 1976: State officials resolve legal and financial problems for a long-proposed state office tower in Cleveland and announce construction would begin by March 1, 1977. The project, discussed since the early 1960s, will be built on Superior Ave. between Huron Rd. and W. 6th St. The Frank J. Lausche State Office Building, named after the former Cleveland mayor and Ohio governor and senator, was ultimately finished in 1979.(P.D.)
  • December 17, 1947: ABC affiliate, WEWS TV channel 5 in Cleveland begins broadcasting as the first commercial television station in Ohio. Televising from Public Auditorium, its first program is the annual Christmas Show sponsored by the Cleveland Press.
  • December 18, 1964: Governor James Rhodes signs legislation creating Cleveland State University, Ohio's seventh state university. See photos of Cleveland State University.
  • December 19, 1949: WXEL TV channel 9, an ABC affiliate, becomes the third and last of Cleveland's 3 VHF television stations when it begins broadcasting from its station at Pleasant Valley and State Roads in Parma. After its purchase by Storer Broadcasting in 1955, it switched stations to channel 8 and network affiliation to CBS, and the next year changed its call letters to WJW.
  • December 20, 1979:The Cleveland Ballet begins a nearly 25-year Cleveland holiday tradition with its production of The Nutcracker, choregraphed by Dennis Nahat, the artistic director for the company.
  • December 21, 1954: Dr. Sam Sheppard is convicted for the second-degree murder of his wife, Marilyn, and sentenced to life in prison by Judge Edward Blythin.
  • December 22, 1917: A choir of 2,000 children and the Hiram House band entertain the holiday crowd on Public Square.
  • December 23, 1923: With the passing of the 21st amendment to the U.S. Constitution by Congress repealing the 18th amendment (1919) and making the Volstead Act unconstitutional, Clevelanders can now legally drink and sell acoholic beverages. Prohibition was never popular in Cleveland and in 1930 Ohio elected Clevelander Robert J. Bulkley, who ran on a platform calling for prohibition's repeal, to the U.S. Senate.
  • December 24, 1956: Halle's seventh floor is the place to be to see Mr. Jingeling, keeper of Santa's keys at the Treasure House of Toys. Children can also visit Santa's castle or listen to holiday stories told by the Play Lady.
  • December 25, 1924: During the month of December, Clevelanders are invited within the grounds of Nela Park at 1975 Noble Road, the headquarters for General Electric's lamp division, to see its spectacular holiday lighting display. Today the display stretches several blocks along Noble Road and visitors may only view it from the street or sidewalk outside the historic industrial park.
  • December 26, 1983: Clevelanders who do not wish to join the post-Christmas shopping frenzy at the malls can spend their afternoon at a matinee showing of A Christmas Story. The film, which has gone on to become one of America's favorite holiday films, was partially shot in Cleveland and features locations such as Higbee's department store, Public Square, and the Tremont area where you can still see “Ralphie's House”.
  • December 27, 1974: President Gerald Ford signs a bill authorizing $34.5 million dollars for acquisition of land along the Cuyahoga River between Akron and Cleveland to be used for a national park. The bill also set aside $500,000 for a park development plan. By the fall of 1980, Cuyahoga Valley National Recreation Area would be offering visitors' biking and nature tours, programs for children, concerts, and craft programs.
  • December 28, 1976: Jeff Kinzbach and Ed (Flash) Ferenc begin an 18-year run as morning DJs on the WMMS-FM/100.7 Buzzard Morning Zoo.
  • December 29, 1968: At Cleveland Municipal Stadium, 78,410 spectators watch the Baltimore Colts avenge their 1964 loss to the Browns by beating the Browns 34-0 and winning the NFL championship.
  • December 30, 1974: Cleveland City Council leaders and Cuyahoga County commissioners reach an agreement creating a regional transit authority by taking over the Cleveland Transit System". Its first 10-member Board of Trustees is appointed a month later with Richard Stoddart as president and Leonard Ronis general manager.
  • December 31, 1999: Worry of a Y2K disaster makes for a subdued New Year's Eve in Cleveland. Many area restaurant and hotel events expect poor attendance because of the public's unwillingness to deal with hassles they anticipate this New Year's Eve.