Browse Interviews

  • Subject is exactly "Cleveland Heights"
71 total

Sally Tatnall (b.1937), a radical feminist and community activist, speaks about her childhood in Buffalo, New York, and what it was like coming of age in the 1940s and 1950s. She describes her marriage to her husband, her civil rights activism and feminist activism with him, and her eventual divorce and introduction to lesbianism. Sally describes…

Alan Rapoport, former Mayor of Cleveland Heights and active community member, discusses how Cleveland Heights and, more particularly, Coventry changed from the 1960s through to the present. From his tenure on City Council and heavy involvement in the local community organization Coventry Neighbors Inc., he describes key initiatives, events, and…

Dave Woldman recalls his experiences in the Heights during the 1960s through the 1970s. He grew up in a conservative Jewish home, but later embraced the counterculture movement and the alternative lifestyles particular to Coventry Village.

Frank Gerlak, architect and urban planner, discusses the history of Coventry and, more generally, Cleveland Heights. Throughout this discussion he touches on the topics of streetcars, planned suburbs, public transportation, and the nation's obsession with the automobile, which concludes with thoughts on Cleveland's development, growth, and missed…

Bruce Hennes first heard about Coventry Village in Cleveland Heights as a teenager living in Canton, Ohio. Soon after high school he moved to Coventry, planted his roots, and became heavily involved in the community. He shares his experiences with and perspectives on Coventry Neighbors Inc., Coventry Community Development Organization, Coventry…

Diane Kelley talks about growing up in Cleveland.

Sean Watterson, co-owner of the Happy Dog on Detroit Ave., expresses the importance of community spaces in bringing Cleveland together as a whole. Since he was raised on the east side, but owns a business on the west side, he has made it his mission to expose east siders to the west side and to encourage west siders to attend cultural and arts…

In this interview Stan Kain, former owner and proprietor of La Cave – a 1960s-era folk and rock venue in the Doan's Corners (Euclid Avenue and East 105) neighborhood – reminisces about the club's genesis, its many seminal performers, and the evolving life of the immediate neighborhood. Stan is accompanied by Steve Traina, a former associate, radio…

Christopher Roy shares an extremely detailed account of his life growing up in Cleveland Heights. As Roy reflects on his childhood, he illuminates the changes that took place in the suburb during the 1960s and 1970s. Roy engages on a journey of Cleveland Heights' transformation from a place of ethnic enclaves to the rise of the counterculture. He…

Richard Baznik, University Historian at Case Western Reserve University, provides a detailed history of the development of the university and describes how the school responded to various national and local events and movements. He notes CWRU's relationship with other cultural and educational institutions in the area.

Christopher Hubbert grew up in Cleveland Heights and describes the area. Throughout his adult life he has lived in Forest Hills and he discusses the development of this neighborhood. He discusses the community atmosphere inherent in the Forest Hills neighborhood, which he attributes to strong resident associations.

In this 2007 interview, Karen Novak, a freelance photographer and life long east-side Clevelander, talks about Cleveland's underground rock club scene during the 1990s. One of the venues that she discusses in great detail is the Euclid Tavern which was located at East 116th and Euclid in Cleveland. Ms. Novak reveals an immense amount of her…

Ruth Dancyger and Sue Koletsky discuss the history of Temple Tifereth Israel at E. 105th St. Rabbi Abba Hillel Silver's role at the synagogue and the part he played in the history of Zionism in the US is particularly recounted.

Alica Palda describes her conservative upbringing. Then she explains how she evolved into a liberal urbanite. Her calling was the theatre and storytelling. She was employed with the Cleveland Public Library System and the Cleveland Heights Public Library System. She colorfully describes her life experiences as a children's librarian, a theatre…

Allan Peskin describes his early childhood in Cumberland, Maryland, and his family's arrival in Cleveland and eventual settlement in Cleveland Heights. The interview offers a colorful insight into the life of a young Jewish man living in a suburb of Cleveland. Peskin vividly describes growing up in Cleveland Heights. The interview also highlights…

Eugenia Vainberg, originally from Kiev, Ukraine, arrived in Cleveland as a Russian Jewish refugee in 1977. She starts by explaining the persecution she and other Jews had to face while living in communist Russia. For Vainberg, mathematical and scientific achievements were the common threads that wove throughout her life. Once she arrived in…

Originally from Massachusetts, Robert Arnold discusses growing up during the Depression. He moved to Cleveland to be closer to his wife's family, who were longtime Clevelanders. Arnold actively served in World War II and explains in detail his involvement in the war. After the war Arnold became involved in the real estate business. He speaks to the…

Jenifer Garfield grew up in New Orleans during the 1930s and 1940s. She describes growing up in the South. She moved to Cleveland after marrying a well-connected husband. She was involved in real estate and describes the changes in the Cleveland and Shaker Heights neighborhoods over the years. She and her husband were very involved in community…

Ruth Thompson, originally from Pennsylvania, is an avid baseball fan. She discusses how important the Cleveland Indians have been in her life. The evolution of gender roles in the healthcare field and in general are expressed throughout the interview. A proponent of racial diversity, Thompson describes the integration of baseball teams and her…

Oklahoma native, Marjorie M. Lamport recalls her move to Cleveland and the changes that have occurred in the last fifty years. She begins by talking about her time in Oklahoma during the Great depression. She continues by saying that her husband told her that they were moving to Cleveland because of work. Once in Cleveland, they settled in Maple…

Dorothy Kuhn, while not born in Cleveland, has spent nearly fifty years in Cleveland. She was born in Pennsylvania and describes what it was like picking up cans for the war effort during World War 2. She came to Cleveland after stints in California and St. Louis to become a nurse. She got her degree from the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing…

William H. Collins, successful architect, spends a lot of time discussing the various projects he worked on throughout Cleveland. He begins, however, talking about growing up in Cleveland Heights, a place where he spent 84 years of his life. He recalls going to the Euclid-105th area and spending time at the movie theaters there. He also talks about…

Massachusetts native, Zelda Segal discusses what it was like teaching at Boulevard School in Cleveland Heights for over thirty years. Segal gives a background of her life growing up during the Great Depression and attending college during World War 2. She then gives the reasons why she came to Cleveland; along with teling the story about how she…

Donald Kuhn describes his life from growing up on a truck farm in Avon to retiring in Cleveland Heights. He provides detailed and vivid memories of how places have changed and transformed over the years. He begins with Avon. He says that the pivotal moment in Avon was when they got the sewers in place. After that people began moving in droves. A…

Elizabeth Breckenridge, Chicago native, describes her time living in Cleveland. For a time in her life, Breckenridge taught at the Cleveland Institute of Art (CIA). During this time, she lived in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Cleveland Heights. She relates what that was like. She also mentions what it was like to work alongside Viktor…

Anne J. Cook, New York City native, took residence in Cleveland Heights beginning in 1951. After moving around Cleveland Heights, she and her husband finally settled in the Oxford School district where she remained for fifty years. She was involved with the League of Women Voters as its treasurer and was the first woman trustee of Plymouth Church…

Gretchen Larson, Cleveland Native, discusses living in the Eastside suburbs of Cleveland. Born in East Cleveland, it was not long before her father took advantage of the Great Depression and moved them to a bigger, better house in Shaker Heights. She relates many memories about her time growing up on Southington Boulevard. These include how…

Alan Dean Buchanan has been the Judge in Cleveland Heights since 2001. He took over for Lynn Toler who was elected in 1994. Judge Buchanan was born in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. He lived with his mother and older brother and attended Northwestern High School in Darlington, Pennsylvania. After high school he went to Princeton University in New…

Joanne Lewis, a native Clevelander, describes what it was like growing up in Cleveland and later Cleveland Heights. She describes what her father did for a living, which provided her and her family a decent lifestyle. She recalls what she used to do for fun like going downtown, using the streetcars, and drinking milkshakes. She talks about the WPA…

Diana Woodbridge grew up in Tucson, Arizona, and Shaker Heights, attended college at Miami University, and taught school for a short time in Painesville, Ohio. She discusses the struggle for fair housing in the Heights in the 1960s-70s and the formation of two key organizations: Forest Hill Housing Corporation and Heights Community Congress.

Doris Allen was originally born in Shelby, Alabama, and moved to Cleveland when she was two years old. She had a very established great uncle living in Cleveland, Robert Hardy, who was the first African American to own property east of East 55th Street in Cleveland. Her father was drafted into the Army when she was 9, and their family moved back to…

Sura Sevastopoulos was born in Cleveland in 1948. She grew up with her mother and grandmother in Cleveland Heights, originally attended Coventry School, and recalls the walk to school quite vividly. She went to college at the Cleveland Insitute of Art, and while in school she worked at a nightclub called "La Cave," which featured many popular…

Russell Baron grew up in Glenville before moving to Cleveland Heights. His father owned a haberdashery, a men's clothing store, where Baron worked during high school and college. Baron became a lawyer and worked in his father-in-law's practice before starting his own law practice. He was a member of the Cleveland Heights Board of Education and…

Born and raised in the Bronx, Judith VanKleef attended college at the University of Wisconsin. She moved to Cleveland's West Side in 1950 and then to Cleveland Heights in 1964. She discusses the shifting color line on Cleveland's East Side in the 1950s-60s and the impact of blockbusting on neighborhoods including her own. She details a blockbusting…

Les Jones provides a very clear, interesting interview, and has a very touching, local story to tell about how he achieved a home in the community he had always dreamed about. As a young child growing up in the Glenville area (East 105th) he would ride his bike to the Cleveland Heights area, and describes it like "going on a vacation" because it…

Christine Morris was born in Columbus, Ohio, and had one brother. She grew up on the east side, but went to a school in the northern part of the city because her parents utilized her grandparent's address in the northern part of the city. She has fond memories of school and the neighborhood. She went on to Ohio University, and met her husband…

Dorothy Silver, a Detroit native, describes what drew her to Cleveland. She says that Cleveland was calling her because it was "receptive to various changes that needed to be made." She and her husband began used the theater as a stage to talk about desegregation. She discusses interracial shows at the time of the Hough Riots in 1966. She also…

Donald Ramos was born in 1942 in New Bedford, Massachusetts, to a family of Portuguese descent. He attended the University of Massachusetts, served in the U.S. Army, and enrolled in the doctoral program in Latin American Studies at the University of Florida. He accepted a position in the History Department at Cleveland State University in 1971 but…

Susanna Neirmann O'Neil, a Cleveland Heights resident, worked for the Heights Community Congress and later for the city of Cleveland Heights. She worked to maintain the racial integration of the city and to promote Cleveland Heights to new residents in general. Building partnerships between realtors and the community was instrumental in achieving…

Lind grew up in Kansas and, after college, attended graduate school at the University of Chicago. He taught at Cleveland State University and lived first on Cleveland's near east side, then in Euclid before choosing Coventry Village in Cleveland Heights as an escape from the racial intolerance he felt characterized Cleveland's suburbs in the early…

Juanita Storey and her husband moved into Cleveland Heights during a time of strong racial segregation. Race was the primary factor in determining where people lived. Realtors played a role in maintainig the racial segregation of the city. She describes the process of racial integration in the city during the 1960s at the height of the Civil Rights…

Susan Kaeser lived in Wisconsin through graduate school. She earned a master of urban planning degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, during which time she met Cleveland City Planning Director Norman Krumholz. Krumholz brought her to Cleveland to serve as a city planner. When she arrived in Cleveland in 1976 she lived first in the…

Sarah Louisa Taylor and her husband, Phillip, were orginally from England. Sarah works at Case Western Reserve University as a research assistant and helps new faculty members settle into the area. The Taylors were active in the Open Housing Task Force in the 1970s, which helped prevent efforts by realtors to prevent the racial integration of…

Francis Chiappa describes his role in the Cleveland Heights Nuclear Freeze Campaign in the 1980s. He worked hard along with other members of Cleveland Heights to make Cleveland Heights a Nuclear Free zone. He describes his background that placed him on the path of activism. He also describes the challenges and triumphs in the process of designating…

Gerald Hughes is an African American Clevelander who served within the Cleveland City Schools for many years. He describes his various positions at various schools. He also points out differences and similarities these schools experienced. He recalls how it was to work with the PTA and how important it is to have an active parent base. He recalls…

Margaret Peacock grew up in Columbus, Ohio. Her father worked for the railroad and her mother was a homemaker. She went to Wittenberg University were she met her husband Larry. They married when they were juniors. Peacock describes her involvement with organizations for black students at Wittenberg. After college, the Peacocks moved to Cleveland…

Virgene Schreckengost is an Ohio native, born in the southernmost part of the state, in Marietta. She enjoyed her childhood there, with plenty to do and a lovely school experience. She pursued her pre-med degree from Ohio Wesleyan and then traveled up to Cleveland to attend Western Reserve for her Ph.D. She was very busy with school, and then…

Renee Harrison grew up in Glenville in the 1950s-60s. After graduating from Glenville High School, she attended Cleveland State University beginning in 1969. She began teaching in the Cleveland Heights-University Heights school district in 1974 and moved to Cleveland Heights the following year. She was a founding member of the Heights Alliance of…

Pamela Ashley, a lifelong Cleveland resident, talks about her life and experiences. She was born in Cleveland and moved to Cleveland Heights in the seventh grade. She describes her travels across the country with her immediate family to visit her extended family. She talks about what she did for fun, which included dances and house parties. She…

William Easterling, son of a coal deliverer and a domestic, grew up in Glenville. With the schools deteriorating and operating on half-day schedules by the 1960s, he and his wife sought a new home in the Cleveland Heights. They faced racial steering to the east of Lee Road but managed to purchase a house on Norfolk Road in Cleveland Heights at a…