Drop Dead Beautiful in CLE!

By Angela Manella, Host Committee member

If you like local history, public spaces, and a bit of peace and quiet, you may want to visit one of Cleveland’s beautiful historic cemeteries!

Erie Street Cemetery. Image Courtesy of Cleveland State University. Michael Schwartz Library. Special Collections.
Erie Street Cemetery. Courtesy of Cleveland State University, Michael Schwartz Library, Special Collections.

If you’re looking for a quick jaunt between sessions, there’s the Erie Street Cemetery downtown, one of the original municipal burial grounds. A twenty minute walk from the Convention Center, you’ll find this petite cemetery in Progressive Field’s backyard, off East 9th Street. The first permanent settler of Cleveland, Lorenzo Carter, and the Mesquakie tribal leader, Joc-O-Sot, are among those interred here after the grounds were consecrated in 1827.

Garfield Monument, Lakeview Cemetery. Courtesy of Wikipedia.
Garfield Monument, Lakeview Cemetery. Courtesy of Wikipedia.

The nineteenth century saw an explosion of “rural” or garden-style cemeteries throughout the country, and Cleveland was no exception. Woodland Cemetery, on the near East side, and Riverside Cemetery, on the near West, are typical of this lovely, walkable style. But, if you’re looking to spend a half day, you must visit the incomparable Lakeview Cemetery in Cleveland Heights.

Jeptha Wade Memorial Chapel - Left Wall Panel, Lakeview Cemetery. Courtesy of Mark Souther, Cleveland Historical.
Jeptha Wade Memorial Chapel – Left Wall Panel, Lakeview Cemetery. Courtesy of Mark Souther, Cleveland Historical.

Have a meal in Coventry and take in the shops, then cross Mayfield Road at Kenilworth to begin your exploration of the Lakeview Cemetery grounds.  Be sure to check out the Jeptha Wade Chapel, featuring art nouveau mosaics and windows designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany; tour the President James A. Garfield Monument; and visit the John D. Rockefeller Memorial. The Early Settlers of the Western Reserve have put together an excellent self-guided walking tour of Cleveland luminaries interred at Lakeview.