The years 1873-1930s were known as Cleveland's Gilded Age. Nearly half of the world's millionaires lived in Cleveland. More than 260 properties showcased the grandeur of this famous era in local history. 'Millionaires' City' became the name for Wickliffe as it became the summer home destination of the area industrialists. 'Touring Wickliffe' was a 1989 program that offered a driving glimpse into this opulent time of history. It began at Rockefeller's former carriage house and ended on Worden Road. Today's entry is but an overview of this Wickliffe Historical Society project.
'Lakeland' as it was known on Rockefeller Road was the summer home of Franklin Rockefeller, one of the more famous gentleman farmers. Totaling 157 acres, the estate was built in the 1900s. Today the carriage house remains, some interurban tracks are located in Pete's Pond Reservation and Wickliffe High School occupies the former estate site.
29940 Ridge Road is the Old Stocking Home. Part of the Stocking Family holdings from 1866-1936, the homestead at 30000 Ridge Road still stands. Nearby to the south was Justamere Farm, the farm of Joseph R. Nutt. It was built in 1896. Nutt was the treasurer of the NRC for Herbert Hoover. Nutt was also a prominent businessman and part owner of the soon to be Quaker Oats Company of Akron, Ohio.
"Nagirroc' was the home of James Corrigan. Corrigan and Price McKinney were independent steel partners. Their company in time was known as Republic Steel. Both men's estates were on the current site of Pine Ridge Golf Club. Corrigan's "Nagirroc" sits on Ridge Road. McKinney's estate 'Ridgemere' sat on Bishop Road. Borromeo Seminary at 28700 Euclid Avenue was also part of this summer home.
'Wickliffe-on-the-Bluff' was the home of D. Edward Dangler. Dangler owned the first company to manufacture gasoline stoves. Today it is known as the Drenik Estate. 29301 Ridge Road is the George Armington home. Armington came to the area in 1903 and his company Cleveland Crane founded in 1899 was synonymous with building.
'Couallenby' is perhaps the city's most famous estate. Today it is the site of Wickliffe City Hall. Completed in 1913, it was the home to Harry Coulby. Coulby was the 'Czar of the Great Lakes.' From humble beginnings Harry rose to become a shipping magnate of the day. Pickands Mather and the Cleveland Foundation are intertwined in his life story.
28400 Euclid Avenue was the Julius E. French property. French was involved in car roofing, railway steel springs and steel car wheels endeavours. The home was known as 'Upton Court' and covered 400 acres. The 'Nutwood Farm' was also part of this site and the Devereux story is part of Ohio's Historical Markers.
T.E. Rice and Chester Rush are local merchants on a lesser scale than the millionaires mentioned above. Their stores merit a mention in today's entry as does the 'Provo House' and Hardaker's Ice Cream Parlour. Copies of the driving tour are available at City Hall. Also located inside the Coulby Estate is the Wickliffe Historical Society. Kathy of the WHS is always ready to share the 'Millionaire City' history with you!