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Cleveland, Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio
City flag City seal
City nickname: The Forest City

Location in the state of Ohio
Founded 1796
Incorporated 1836
County Cuyahoga County
Mayor Jane Campbell (Dem)
 - Total
 - Water

213.5 km² (82.4 mi²)
12.5 km² (4.8 mi²)
 - City (2000)
 - Metropolitan
 - Density

aprox 2,148,048
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5
41°28'56" N
81°40'11 W
For the Cleveland area, see Greater Cleveland.

The city of Cleveland is the county seat of Cuyahoga County in the U.S. state of Ohio. As of the 2000 census, the city proper had a total population of 478,403 making it second in population in the state to Columbus, Ohio, and 33rd in the nation. Greater Cleveland, however, including the entire metropolitan area and suburbs, has as many as 2,900,000 people - if the Akron and Lorain areas are included - by far the largest urban area in the state. On the southern shore of Lake Erie, Cleveland is located in the Western Reserve in northeastern Ohio on the Cuyahoga River, approximately 60 miles west of the Pennsylvania border.



The city obtained its name on July 22, 1796 when surveyors of the Connecticut Land Company named an area in Ohio "Cleaveland" after Gen. Moses Cleaveland, the superintendent of the surveying party, a month after white settlers had signed a treaty with local Native Americans to acquire the land. Cleaveland laid out the plan for the modern Public Square area before returning home. He never visited the area again. The spelling of the city's name was later changed to "Cleveland" when, in 1831, an "a" was dropped so the name could fit a newspaper's masthead.

Though not initially apparent - the city was surrounded by swampland and the harsh winters did not encourage settlement - the location proved providential. The city began to grow rapidly after the completion of the Ohio and Erie Canal in 1832, turning the city into a key link between the Ohio River and the Great Lakes, and particularly once the city railroad links were added. In 1837, the city, then located on the eastern banks of the Cuyahoga River, nearly erupted into open warfare with neighboring Ohio City, Ohio (since annexed) over a bridge connecting the two. As a half-way point for iron ore coming from Minnesota across the Great Lakes and for coal and other raw materials coming by rail from the south, the site flourished. Cleveland also enjoyed its position as the major break-in-bulk center for Ohio.

 in downtown Cleveland
Key Tower in downtown Cleveland

Cleveland became one of the major manufacturing and population centers of the United States, home of numerous major steel firms. Standard Oil founder John D. Rockefeller made his fortune there. By 1920, it was the 5th largest city in the country. The city was also one of the centers of the national progressive movement, locally headed by Mayor Tom L. Johnson.

The city experienced a downturn in the post-World War II period, as heavy industries slumped and residents sought new housing in the suburbs; see white flight. The city witnessed racial unrest in the 1960s, culminating in riots in Hough 1965 and Glenville 1968. The city's nadir is often considered to be its default on its loans on December 15, 1978, when under young Mayor Dennis Kucinich it became the first major American city to enter default since the Great Depression. Kucinich's administration claimed that the city had been forced into default by local banks and a local electric provider who attempted to force the city to sell off Cleveland Public Power, the small city-owned electric utility.

The metropolitan area began a recovery thereafter under Mayors George Voinovich and Michael White. Redevelopment within the city limits has been strongest in the downtown area near the Gateway complex - consisting of Jacobs Field and Gund Arena - and near the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Cleveland Browns Stadium. Many of the inner-city residential neighborhoods remain troubled, and the public school system continues to experience serious problems despite the highest level of per-student funding in the state. Economic development, retention of young professionals, and capitalizing upon its Lake Erie waterfront are current municipal priorities.


Cleveland is located at 41°28'56" North, 81°40'11" West (41.482301, -81.669718).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 213.5 km² (82.4 mi²). 200.9 km² (77.6 mi²) of it is land and 12.5 km² (4.8 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 5.87% water.


As of the census2 of 2000, there are 478,403 people, 190,638 households, and 111,904 families residing in the city. The population density is 2,380.9/km² (6,166.5/mi²). There are 215,856 housing units at an average density of 1,074.3/km² (2,782.4/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 41.49% White, 50.99% Black or African American, 0.30% Native American, 1.35% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 3.59% from other races, and 2.24% from two or more races. 7.26% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race. Cleveland's East half is more ethnically diverse than its West half.

There are 190,638 households out of which 29.9% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 28.5% are married couples living together, 24.8% have a female householder with no husband present, and 41.3% are non-families. 35.2% of all households are made up of individuals and 11.1% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.44 and the average family size is 3.19.

In the city the population is spread out with 28.5% under the age of 18, 9.5% from 18 to 24, 30.4% from 25 to 44, 19.0% from 45 to 64, and 12.5% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 33 years. For every 100 females there are 90.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 85.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $25,928, and the median income for a family is $30,286. Males have a median income of $30,610 versus $24,214 for females. The per capita income for the city is $14,291. 26.3% of the population and 22.9% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 37.6% of those under the age of 18 and 16.8% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.

Cleveland was hit hard by white flight and suburbanization, further exacerbated by the busing-based desegregation of Cleveland schools required by the United States Supreme Court. Although busing ended in the 1990s, Cleveland continued to slide into poverty, reaching a nadir in 2004 when it was named the poorest large city in the United States.

Sports and Leisure

Cleveland's sports teams include the Cleveland Indians (Major League Baseball), Cleveland Browns (National Football League), Cleveland Cavaliers (National Basketball Association), Cleveland Barons (American Hockey League), and Cleveland Force (Major Indoor Soccer League). Cleveland is also an annual circuit on the Champ Car World Series.

Cleveland is also home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, which is located downtown close to Lake Erie. The museum's building was designed by I. M. Pei. In the 1970s a number of bands generally described as protopunk or pre-punk were formed in Cleveland, including The Dead Boys, Electric Eels, Rocket From The Tombs, and Pere Ubu.

The Great Lakes Science Center is located next to the Hall of Fame. Other nearby attractions include the Steamship William G. Mather Maritime Museum, a restored Great Lakes bulk freighter built in 1925, and the USS Cod, a World War II submarine.

Five miles (8 km) east of downtown Cleveland is University Circle, a 500 acre (2 km²) concentration of cultural, educational, and medical institutions. These include the Cleveland Museum of Art and Severance Hall, home to the Cleveland Orchestra, one of the United States' major orchestras. Some of the other institutions located in University Circle are the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, the Cleveland Botanical Garden, the Cleveland Institute of Art, the Cleveland Institute of Music , University Hospitals of Cleveland, the Western Reserve Historical Society, and Case Western Reserve University. The Cleveland Clinic, the Cleveland Playhouse and the Health Museum of Cleveland are located nearby.

Industry and Politics

Cleveland is the corporate headquarters of many large companies, such as National City Corporation, Eaton Corporation, Forest City Enterprises , Sherwin Williams Company , and KeyCorp , after which the highest skyscraper in Cleveland is named (Key Tower).

The politics of Cleveland are considered to favor the Democratic party to a greater degree than areas of the state farther south. Historically the support for the Democratic party had been based on the strong support of labor unions, as well as both white and black ethnic voters, especially Catholics. During the 2004 Presidential election, although George W. Bush carried Ohio, John Kerry carried Cuyahoga County, which gave him the strongest support in the state.

Noted Politicians

Mass transit

Cleveland currently has a mass transit system consisting of two light rail lines and one urban heavy rail metro line, officially named Cleveland Rapid Transit, but better known as The Rapid. The light rail lines are all that remain of the city's once-extensive streetcar system. The metro was extended to Hopkins International Airport in 1968 -- the first airport-to-mass-transit link in North America.

The Rapid and local bus lines are owned and administered by the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority.

Cleveland Highways

Four major Interstate highways serve the Cleveland area: I-71, I-77, I-80 and I-90. To the west of Cleveland, I-90 runs into I-80, which is also known as the Ohio Turnpike.

Three Interstate spurs also serve Cleveland: I-271, I-480, and I-490. I-271 and I-480 are the only two three-digit interstates in the nation to be multiplexed with each other. They run concurrent near the suburb of Maple Heights.

Colleges and universities



Theatrical companies


  • Brooklyn Center
  • Buckeye-Shaker Square
  • Central
  • Clark-Fulton
  • Corlett
  • Cudell
  • Detroit Shoreway
  • Downtown
  • Edgewater
  • Euclid-Green
  • Fairfax
  • Forest Hills
  • Glenville
  • Goodrich-Kirtland
  • Hough
  • Industrial Valley
  • Jefferson
  • Kamm's Corners
  • Kinsman
  • Lee-Miles
  • Mount Pleasant
  • North Broadway
  • North Collinwood
  • Ohio City
  • Old Brooklyn
  • Puritas-Longmead
  • Riverside
  • South Broadway
  • South Collinwood
  • St. Clair-Superior
  • Stockyards
  • Tremont
  • Union-Miles Park
  • University Circle-Little Italy
  • The Warehouse District
  • West Boulevard
  • Woodland Hills

Television stations

Additional sites of interest

Famous Natives

See Also


  • Infoplease(2004). Cleveland, Ohio ( Retrieved Oct. 9, 2004.

External links

Last updated: 05-11-2005 07:47:09
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