Langston Hughes called it "a great dark tide from the South": the unprecedented influx of blacks into Cleveland that gave the city the nickname "Alabama North." Kimberley L. Phillips reveals the breadth of working class black experiences and activities in Cleveland and the extent to which these were shaped by traditions and values brought from the South.
Migrants' moves north established complex networks of kin and friends and infused Cleveland with a highly visible southern African American culture. Phillips examines the variety of black fraternal, benevolent, social, and church-based organizations that working class migrants created and demonstrates how these groups prepared the way for new forms of individual and collective activism in workplaces and the city. Giving special consideration to the experiences of working class black women, AlabamaNorth reveals how migrants' expressions of tradition and community gave them a new consciousness of themselves as organized workers and created the underpinning for new forms of black labor activism.
Detractors have called it "The Mistake on the Lake." It was once America’s "Comeback City." According to author J. Mark Souther, Cleveland has long sought to defeat its perceived civic malaise. Believing in Cleveland chronicles how city leaders used imagery and rhetoric to combat and, at times, accommodate urban and economic decline.
Souther explores Cleveland's downtown revitalization efforts, its neighborhood renewal and restoration projects, and its fight against deindustrialization. He shows how the city reshaped its image when it was bolstered by sports team victories. But Cleveland was not always on the upswing. Souther places the city's history in the postwar context when the city and metropolitan area were divided by uneven growth. In the 1970s, the city-suburb division was wider than ever.
Believing in Cleveland recounts the long, difficult history of a city that entered the postwar period as America's sixth largest, then lost ground during a period of robust national growth. But rather than tell a tale of decline, Souther provides a fascinating story of resilience for what some folks called "The Best Location in the Nation."
As the first elected black mayor of a major U.S. city, Cleveland's Carl B. Stokes embodied the transformation of the civil rights movement from a vehicle of protest to one of black political power.
In this wide-ranging political biography, Leonard N. Moore examines the convictions and alliances that brought Stokes to power. Impelled by the problems plaguing Cleveland's ghettos in the decades following World War II, Stokes and other Clevelanders questioned how the sit-ins and marches of the civil rights movement could correct the exclusionary zoning practices, police brutality, substandard housing, and de facto school segregation that African Americans in the country's northern urban centers viewed as evidence of their oppression.
As civil unrest in the country's ghettos turned to violence in the 1960s, Cleveland was one of the first cities to heed the call of Malcolm X's infamous "The Ballot or the Bullet" speech. Understanding the importance of controlling the city's political system, Cleveland's blacks utilized their substantial voting base to put Stokes in office in 1967.
Stokes was committed to showing the country that an African American could be an effective political leader. He employed an ambitious and radically progressive agenda to clean up Cleveland's ghettos, reform law enforcement, move public housing to middle-class neighborhoods, and jump-start black economic power. Hindered by resistance from the black middle class and the Cleveland City Council, spurned by the media and fellow politicians who deemed him a black nationalist, and unable to prove that black leadership could thwart black unrest, Stokes finished his four years in office with many of his legislative goals unfulfilled.
Focusing on Stokes and Cleveland, but attending to themes that affected many urban centers after the second great migration of African Americans to the North, Moore balances Stokes's failures and successes to provide a thorough and engaging portrait of his life and his pioneering contributions to a distinct African American political culture that continues to shape American life.
On the morning of May 7, 1965, the American freighter Cedarville collided with the Norwegian vessel Topdalsfjord in heavy fog in the Straits of Mackinac. Ultimately, ten crew members of the Cedarville died and a legal battle ensued implicating U.S. Steel---the company that owned the Cedarville---in the chain of events leading to the tragedy.
The Cedarville Conspiracy is the story of that doomed ship and its crew. It is also the first Great Lakes history to expose the heroism, villainy, courage, and confusion surrounding the Cedarville disaster.
In atmospheric, cinematic style, L. Stephen Cox's gripping page-turner dramatizes the events surrounding the collision between the Norwegian and American freighters. As the mortally wounded Cedarville began to list and sink, U.S. Steel refused to allow the crew to escape to safety, while the captain secretly donned his life jacket and abandoned the sinking ship. Ten seamen died in the frigid waters that morning as the captain and survivors swam to safety.
Researching the story, author L. Stephen Cox interviewed the surviving crew and their rescuers and attorneys, examined more than 20,000 pages of Coast Guard reports, and discovered deposition transcripts and other documentary evidence that detailed the deterioration of the ship, the captain's disregard of Great Lakes navigational rules, the company's participation in the decision to confine the men aboard the sinking vessel, and the subsequent efforts by U.S. Steel to manipulate the evidence.
In 1985, the Sohio oil company commissioned Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen to design and construct a large outdoor sculpture for its new corporate headquarters in Cleveland, Ohio. The result was Free Stamp, a bold and distinctive installation that captured both a Pop Art sensibility and a connection to the city’s industrial past. Sohio executives approved the design, and work was already underway, when British Petroleum acquired the company. The new owners quickly decided that the sculpture was “inappropriate” for their building and attempted to rid themselves of Free Stamp by donating it to the city of Cleveland—a gift that the city initially had no desire to accept. After much debate and public protest, the sculpture found a home in Willard Park, where it stands today.
This is the first study of any sculpture by Oldenburg and van Bruggen to examine the genesis of their art from conception to installation. Edward J. Olszewski has put together a fascinating narrative based on interviews with the artists, archival material from city records, and in-house corporate memoranda, as well as letters to the editor and political cartoons. He traces the development of the sculpture from the artists’ first sketches and models to the installation of the completed work in its urban environment.
This study looks at the architectural transformation of Cleveland during its “golden age”—roughly the period between post–Civil War reconstruction and World War I. By the early twentieth century, Cleveland, which would evolve into the fifth largest city in America, hoped to shed the gritty industrial image of its rapid-growth period and evolve into a city to match the political clout of its statesmen like John Hay and wealth of its business elites such as John D. Rockefeller. Encouraged by the spectacle and public response to the Beaux-Arts buildings of the Chicago World’s Exposition of 1893, the city embarked upon a grand scheme to construct new governmental and civic structures known as the Cleveland Plan of Grouping Public Buildings, one of the earliest and most complete City Beautiful planning schemes in the country. The success of this plan led to a spillover effect that prompted architects to design all manner of new public buildings with similar Beaux-Arts stylistic characteristics during the next three decades. With the group plan realized, civic leaders— with the goal of expanding the city’s cultural institutions to match the distinction of its civic center—established its counterpart in University Circle, creating a secondary group plan, the first cultural center in the country.
This volume gathers an array of voices to tell the stories of Cleveland’s twentieth century Jewish community. Strong and stable after an often turbulent century, the Jews of Cleveland had both deep ties in the region and an evolving and dynamic commitment to Jewish life. The authors present the views and actions of community leaders and everyday Jews who embodied that commitment in their religious participation, educational efforts, philanthropic endeavors, and in their simple desire to live next to each other in the city’s eastern suburbs. The twentieth century saw the move of Cleveland’s Jews out of the center of the city, a move that only served to increase the density of Jewish life. The essays collected here draw heavily on local archival materials and present the area’s Jewish past within the context of American and American Jewish studies.
Seeking answers to the question, "Who benefits from homelessness?" this book takes the reader on a sweeping tour of Cleveland's history from the late nineteenth-century through the early twenty-first. Daniel Kerr shows that homelessness has deep roots in the shifting ground of urban labor markets, social policy, downtown development, the criminal justice system, and corporate power. Rather than being attributable to the illnesses and inadequacies of the unhoused themselves, it is a product of both structural and political dynamics shaping the city. Kerr locates the origins of today's shelter system in the era that followed the massive railroad rebellions of 1877. From that period through the Great Depression, business and political leaders sought to transform downtown Cleveland to their own advantage. As they focused on bringing business travelers and tourists to the city and beckoned upper-income residents to return to its center, they demolished two downtown working-class neighborhoods and institutionalized a shelter system to contain and control the unhoused and unemployed. The precedents from this period informed the strategies of the post–World War II urban renewal era as the "new urbanism" of the late twentieth century. The efforts of the city's elites have not gone uncontested. Kerr documents a rich history of opposition by people at the margins of whose organized resistance and everyday survival strategies have undermined the grand plans crafted by the powerful and transformed the institutions designed to constrain the lives of the homeless.
America’s cities are increasingly acknowledged as sites of renewal and economic opportunity—but how can city leaders facing physical and financial constraints harness this positive energy to create sustainable development? The story of Cleveland in the early 1980s provides the necessary roadmap. Mayor George V. Voinovich, by drawing on the combined strengths of the public and private sectors, took Cleveland from financial default to becoming “America’s Comeback City,” and he later used the best practices he developed there to tackle state-level challenges as governor of Ohio. The public-private partnership model that Voinovich pioneered has since become the gold standard for cities seeking to maximize resources.
Using lessons from Cleveland, Voinovich developed this handbook for governments and private entities seeking a mutually enriching partnership. It is his legacy to those who will guide America’s cities to new growth and vitality.
The Gentleman from Ohio
Louis Stokes with David Chanoff The Ohio State University Press, 2016 Library of Congress E840.8.S835A3 2016 | Dewey Decimal 328.73092
Louis Stokes was a giant in Ohio politics and one of the most significant figures in the U.S. Congress in recent times. When he arrived in the House of Representatives as a freshman in 1969, there were only six African Americans serving. By the time he retired thirty years later, he had chaired the House Special Committee on the Kennedy and King assassinations, the House Ethics Committee during Abscam, and the House Intelligence Committee during Iran-Contra; he was also a senior member of the powerful House Appropriations Committee.
Prior to Louis Stokes’s tenure in Congress he served for many years as a criminal defense lawyer and chairman of the Cleveland NAACP Legal Redress Committee. Among the Supreme Court Cases he argued, the Terry “Stop and Frisk” case is regarded as one of the twenty-five most significant cases in the court’s history. The Gentleman from Ohio chronicles this and other momentous events in the life and legacy of Ohio’s first black representative—a man who, whether in law or politics, continually fought for the principles he believed in and helped lead the way for African Americans in the world of mainstream American politics.
It was a phrase that consumed the American imagination in the 1960s and 70s and inspired a new agenda for black freedom. Dynamic and transformational, the black power movement embodied more than media stereotypes of gun-toting, dashiki-wearing black radicals; the movement opened new paths to equality through political and economic empowerment.
In Harambee City, Nishani Frazier chronicles the rise and fall of black power within the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) by exploring the powerful influence of the Cleveland CORE chapter. Frazier explores the ways that black Clevelanders began to espouse black power ideals including black institution building, self-help, and self-defense. These ideals challenged CORE’s philosophy of interracial brotherhood and nonviolent direct action, spawning ideological ambiguities in the Cleveland chapter. Later, as Cleveland CORE members rose to national prominence in the organization, they advocated an open embrace of black power and encouraged national CORE to develop a notion of black community uplift that emphasized economic populism over political engagement. Not surprisingly, these new empowerment strategies found acceptance in Cleveland.
By providing an understanding of the tensions between black power and the mainstream civil rights movement as they manifested themselves as both local and national forces, Harambee City sheds new light on how CORE became one of the most dynamic civil rights organizations in the black power era.
Legacy cities, also commonly referred to as shrinking, or post-industrial cities, are places that have experienced sustained population loss and economic contraction. In the United States, legacy cities are those that are largely within the Rust Belt that thrived during the first half of the 20th century. In the second half of the century, these cities declined in economic power and population leaving a legacy of housing stock, warehouse districts, and infrastructure that is ripe for revitalization. This volume explores not only the commonalities across legacy cities in terms of industrial heritage and population decline, but also their differences. Legacy Cities poses the questions: What are the legacies of legacy cities? How do these legacies drive contemporary urban policy, planning and decision-making? And, what are the prospects for the future of these cities? Contributors primarily focus on Cleveland, Ohio, but all Rust Belt cities are discussed.
Paul Davidoff book of the year award from the Associated Collegiate Schools of Planning, 1990
"No planner, I predict, will be able to consider his education complete during the next decade or so who has not grappled vicariously with the dilemmas Krumholz faced."
--Alan A. Altshuler, from the Foreword
From 1969 to 1979, Cleveland's city planning staff under Norman Krumholz's leadership conducted a unique experiment in equity oriented planning. Fighting to defend the public welfare while also assisting the city's poorest citizens, these planners combined professional competence and political judgment to bring pressing urban issues to the public's attention. Although frequently embroiled in controversy while serving three different mayors, the Cleveland planners not only survived, but accomplished impressive equity objectives. In this book, Norman Krumholz and John Forester provide the first detailed personal account of a sustained and effective equity-planning practice that influenced urban policy.
Krumholz describes the pragmatic equity-planning agenda that his staff pursued during the mayoral administrations of Carl B. Stokes, Ralph J. Perk, and Dennis J. Kucinich. He presents case studies illuminated with rich personal experience, of the Euclid Beach development, the Clark Freeway, and the tax-delinquency and land-banking project that resulted in a change in the State of Ohio's property law, among others. In the second part of the book, John Forester explores the implications of this experience and the lessons that can be drawn for planning, public management, and administrative practice more generally.
"Fascinating, illuminating war stories from the nation's most creative and progressive (ex)municipal planning director, capped by an intelligent and useful set of 'lessons.'"
--Chester W. Hartman, Fellow, Institute for Policy Studies, and Chair, Planner Network
"In this extraordinary book, Norman Krumholz and John Forester team up to enlighten those seeking a progressive approach to planning on how to interpret the Clevland experience. Krumholz provides an analytic chronicle of his role as Cleveland's planning director under three mayors and of his efforts to plan on behalf of the city's impoversithed majority. Forester examines the Cleveland story from the perspective of a planning theorist whose focus is how planning can serve people with relatively little political influence. Together the authors identify the opportunities that exist within the urban governmental structure. They conclude that planning and politics are not antithical and that an astute political strategy depends on sound professionalism. This well-written book is required reading for both students and practitioners of planning."
--Susan S. Fainstein, Rutgers University
"Norman Krumholz's story is one of the high points in the history of city planning and urban affairs in this country, and John Forester is one of its foremost interpreters of this history."
--Pierre Clavel, Cornell University
"Over and over again this book reveals the extraordinary levels of commitment, creativity, and effort that were needed and expended to divert the market-driven urban development process, however slightly, from its normal course--the reinforcement and reproduction of the status quo."
Preserving the Vanishing City considers the unique challenges, conditions, and opportunities facing Cleveland’s historic preservation community during the 1970s and 1980s. While pro-preservationists argued for the economic and revitalization benefits stemming from saving and repurposing older buildings, population loss and economic contraction prompted decades of deterioration, underinvestment, vacancy, and abandonment.
Stephanie Ryberg-Webster uncovers the motivations, strategies, and constraints driving Cleveland’s historic preservation sector, led by the public-sector Cleveland Landmarks Commission, nonprofit Cleveland Restoration Society, and a cadre of advocates. She sheds light on the ways in which preservationists confronted severe, escalating, and sustained urban decline, which plagued Cleveland, a prototypical rust-belt industrial city.
Preserving the Vanishing City chronicles the rise of the historic preservation profession in Cleveland and provides six case studies about targeted projects and neighborhood efforts, including industrial heritage, housing preservation and restoration, commercial district revitalization, securing local historic district designations, as well as grassroots organizing, coalition building, and partnerships. Ryberg-Webster also addresses the complexities of historic preservation within the context of rapid racial change in Cleveland’s neighborhoods.
A comprehensive history of preservation within the context of one city’s urban decline, Preserving the Vanishing Cityrecounts the successes, failures, and creative strategies employed to save Cleveland’s built environment.
The performance art of burlesque, once a faded form, has made a comeback in the twenty-first century, and it has shimmied back to life with a vengeance in Cleveland. Thanks to fans and entrepreneurs, neo-burlesque has taken the stage—and it’s more inclusive, less seedy, and emphatically fun.
Rust Belt Burlesque traces the history of burlesque in Cleveland from the mid-1800s to the present day, while also telling the story of Bella Sin, a Mexican immigrant who largely drove Northeast Ohio’s neo-burlesque comeback. The historical center of Cleveland burlesque was the iconic Roxy Theater on East Ninth Street. Here, in its twentieth-century heyday, famed dancers like Blaze Starr and comics like Red Skelton and Abbott and Costello entertained both regulars and celebrity guests.
Erin O’Brien’s lively storytelling and Bob Perkoski’s color photos give readers a peek into the raucous Ohio Burlesque Festival that packs the house at the Beachland Ballroom every year. Today’s burlies come in all shapes, ethnicities, and orientations, drawing a legion of adoring fans. This is a show you won’t want to miss.
World War II soldier Bill Wynne met Smoky while serving in New Guinea, where the dog, who was smaller than Wynne’s army boot, was found trying to scratch her way out of a foxhole. After he adopted her, she served as the squadron mascot and is credited as being the first therapy dog for the emotional support she provided the soldiers. When they weren’t fighting, Bill taught Smoky hundreds of tricks to entertain the troops. Smoky became a war hero herself at an airstrip in Luzon, the Philippines, where she helped save forty airplanes and hundreds of soldiers from imminent attack.
After the war, Bill worked as a Hollywood animal trainer and then returned to his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio. He and Smoky continued to perform their act, even getting their own TV show, How to Train Your Dog with Bill Wynne and Smoky.
Nancy Roe Pimm presents Bill and Smoky’s story to middle-grade readers in delightful prose coupled with rich archival illustrations. Children will love learning about World War II from an unusual perspective, witnessing the power of the bond between a soldier and his dog, and seeing how that bond continued through the exciting years following the war.
The prototypical rust belt city, Cleveland has long served as an emblem of late twentieth-century urban decay. But recent decades have brought a cultural and economic renaissance—a revival that has been reflected and aided by the growing number of films being shot on location there.
This new entry in the World Film Locations series offers the first-ever extended look at Cleveland on screen. Richly illustrated with images from dozens of productions, it reveals Cleveland to be usefully chameleonic, appealing to some filmmakers for its modern downtown’s ability to mimic more prominent (and more expensive) cities, to others for the way its shuttered factories and decaying docks signify contemporary urban distress. With entries on such classics as The Fortune Cookie, The Deer Hunter, A Christmas Story, and Marvel’s The Avengers, as well as lesser-known films, the volume reveals Cleveland to be a far more compelling, and far more varied, on-screen presence than even most film buffs would expect.
Like all the books in this series, World Film Locations: Cleveland is designed to appeal to cinephiles and scholars alike, while also serving as a silver screen souvenir for those who make the city their home as well as for those who visit it.