[graphic] Ohio and Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor: A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary
[graphic] Link to Canal Home  [graphic] Link to List of Sites  [graphic] Link to Maps  [graphic] Link to Essays  [graphic] Link to Learn More  [graphic] Link to Itineraries Home Page  [graphic] Link to National Register of Historic Places Home Page
[graphic] Previous Site
Brooklyn Centre Historic District
[graphic] Next Site

Typical house of the Brooklyn Centre Historic District
Courtesy of Cuyahoga Valley National Park, photo by Janet Burke

Located on the near southwest side of Cleveland, on high ground north of Big Creek Valley, Brooklyn Centre reflects the urbanization of America. The neighborhood's street patterns and buildings illustrate the area's transition from rural hamlet to suburban center to inner city neighborhood. The Upper Flats creates the eastern edge of the district while I-71defines the northern edge. Big Creek Valley and Brookside Park provide the western border.

Brooklyn was settled in 1812 along an American Indian trail that broke off of the Lake Trail and followed the current alignment of Pearl Road until reaching the ridge edge of the prehistoric Lake Whittelsey. The Township of Brooklyn was established in 1818. By 1830, Brooklyn Centre was a small trading post for the largely rural township and by a generation later, it had grown into a hamlet with merchandising, manufacturing, trade and a residential area for Cleveland business people and industrialists. The semi-rural feel of the community attracted residential development. After the Civil War, Brooklyn became a self sufficient village with its own school system, fire department and constable. In 1894, the village was annexed by the City of Cleveland, after which the neighborhood developed rapidly, spurred by new civic improvements such as paved streets with utility lines, and the extension of police and fire protection into Brooklyn Centre.

[photo] Historic view one of the churches of the Brooklyn Centre Historic District, c. 1920
Courtesy of the Cleveland Press Collection, Cleveland State University Library

By 1906 the streets were all laid out and most of the houses were constructed by 1915. The houses are predominately situated on large one-half-acre lots. Archwood Avenue is a particularly good example of the type of broad streets found in this district that have large houses with spacious lots. The variety of architectural styles in Brooklyn Centre include Greek Revival, Italianate, Queen Anne, Colonial Revival and Bungalow. These residences are comparable to the best surviving examples in Cleveland, although Brooklyn Centre is a more intact neighborhood than others around the city. In addition to the houses of the neighborhood, the district includes several churches and institutional buildings. Pearl Road is the historic commercial center of the neighborhood, although only a few historic commercial buildings remain.

Brooklyn Centre Historic District is roughly bounded by 1-71, Pearl Rd. and Big Creek Valley, in Cleveland. Residences are privately owned, and not open to the public. Public buildings are open during normal business hours. Further information is available at the Old Brooklyn Community Development Corporation website.

 [graphic] Rotating Postcard Images
 [graphic] Link to Transportation Essay  [graphic] Link to Industry Essay
 [graphic] Link to Preservation  Essay
 [graphic] Link to Ethnicity Essay

Canal Home | List of Sites | Maps| Learn More | Itineraries | NR Home | Next Site
Essays: Transportation | Ethnicity| Industry| Preservation

Comments or Questions


[graphic] National Park Service Arrowhead and link to nps.gov