We don’t have to tell you that Cleveland is pretty cool, right? Because it is. Heck, it might be the most underrated city in America.
It’s also a pretty interesting city. As proof, here are 10 things you might now know about our gem on the lake:
- Cleveland almost went to war. In 1836, the still young city was only on the eastern banks of the Cuyahoga River. A conflict erupted with nearby Ohio City over a proposed bridge between the two cities, and it came close to turning into a violent conflict. Now, of course, Ohio City is part of Cleveland.
- John D Rockefeller is perhaps the most famous rich guy in history, and his company, Standard Oil, was one of the world’s largest and most controversial. And Rockefeller founded the company right in Cleveland in 1870, before moving it to New York 15 years later.
- Lots of American cities defaulted on their debt during the Great Depression, but that trend ended when the Depression ended ... until 1978, that is, when Cleveland became the first city since the Depression to default on its debt. D’oh!
- For two straight decades, the Cleveland Clinic was the top heart program in the United States. A healthy Ohio is a great Ohio!
- If you love shopping malls, you have Cleveland to thank for them. The first indoor shopping mall in the U.S. opened in Cleveland in 1890. The Cleveland Arcade, as it was called, is no longer a mall, but the building still stands today.
- You might already know the first electric streetlights came from Cleveland, but did you also know that X-Ray machines and full-body scanners were also invented here?
- Euclid Avenue was once called Millionaire’s Row and was considered one of the most elite, desirable places in the world. This was in no small part because Rockefeller called it his home.
- Famed Olympian Jesse Owners, who won four gold medals in 1936 in Berlin right in front of the world’s biggest bigot, Adolph Hitler, was from Cleveland.
- Woo! Woo! Woo! Woo! Arsenio Hall is from Cleveland, too. He’s not a big deal now, but for a time he changed the way talk shows worked.
- Lake Erie is both the warmest of the Great Lakes and also the most shallow.
Naturally, we could go on and on and on. Maybe we will in a future article, too. But for now, we hope this helped you get to know the city a little better!