William Hopkins from the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

William Hopkins from the Encyclopedia of Cleveland

The link is here

HOPKINS, WILLIAM ROWLAND (26 July 1869-9 Feb. 1961), lawyer, industrial developer, and Cleveland’s first city manager, was born in Johnstown, Pa., to David J. and Mary Jeffreys Hopkins. The family came to Cleveland in 1874. At 13, Hopkins began working in the Cleveland Rolling Mills, using his earnings to attend Western Reserve Academy, graduating in 1892. He earned his A.B. (1896) and LL.B. (1899) at Western Reserve University, being elected to CLEVELAND CITY COUNCIL as a Republican (1897-99) while in law school. Hopkins laid out new industrial plant developments, and in 1905 promoted construction of the Cleveland Short Line Railroad, linking Cleveland’s major industrial sections. He gave up his law practice in 1906 to devote himself to business.

Hopkins became chairman of the Republican county committee and a member of the election board and, with the approval of both political parties, became Cleveland’s first city manager in 1924. Removed from partisan politics, he developed parks, improved welfare institutions, began PUBLIC AUDITORIUM, and developed Cleveland Municipal Airport. Although as city manager he was administrative head, he also took the lead in determining policy. City council felt he acquired too much control and removed him from office in Jan. 1930. In 1931 he became a member of council, unsuccessfully fighting for retention of the CITY MANAGER PLAN. In 1933 he returned to private life. The airport was named in his honor in 1951 (see CLEVELAND-HOPKINS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT). Hopkins married Ellen Louise Cozad in 1903; they had no children and divorced in 1926. He died in Cleveland and was buried in LAKE VIEW CEMETERY.

Cleveland Hopkins Airport from the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

Cleveland Hopkins Airport from the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

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The CLEVELAND-HOPKINS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT is located 8 miles southwest of PUBLIC SQUARE at Brookpark Rd. and Riverside Dr. The airport, originally known as Cleveland Municipal, was renamed Cleveland-Hopkins Intl. Airport on 26 July 1951, to commemorate the 82nd birthday of WILLIAM R. HOPKINS†, who founded it. A municipal airport for the city was envisioned shortly after World War I, but the airfield did not became a reality until the federal government was satisfied that the city could provide an adequate facility for U.S. Air Mail planes stopping in Cleveland on their coast-to-coast flights. In 1925 City Manager William R. Hopkins obtained the city council’s agreement to issue bonds to build the airport on 1,040 acres of land at the Brookpark and Riverside intersection. Clearing and grading took place at record speed so that the U.S. Air Mail could inaugurate night flights on 1 July 1925. Its first terminal building, constructed in 1927, featured the world’s first airport control tower. Although the local news media criticized the airfield’s distant location, passengers were willing to make the long trek, as well as the general public, who curiously viewed activity at the field. The NATIONAL AIR RACES were first held in Cleveland in 1929 as part of the ceremonies dedicating Cleveland’s Municipal Airport.

Through the years, the city has expanded and modernized the facilities at Hopkins to meet increasing passenger demands. A new terminal building was built in 1956, and since then additional concourses and gates have been added–the South Concourse, opened in April 1968, and the North Concourse, opened in Aug. 1978. The baggage-handling and parking facilities also were enlarged and moving sidewalks and escalators were installed. On 15 Nov. 1968, direct rapid transit service to the airport began. The problems of jet noise and the need for more and longer runways have brought the city into conflict with the airport’s neighbors as it expanded into population centers adjacent to it. In the wake of airline deregulation in the 1970s, airlines established selected hubs from which to conduct their operations. As a result, United Airlines, once dominant at Hopkins, reduced its 110 daily flights from Cleveland in 1979 to just 13 in 1988. Hopkins enjoyed an increase in passenger traffic in the 1980s and early 1990s, attributed to an improved local economy and the ability of the airport to meet carrier needs quickly. In the interim, both Continental and USAir have increased their airport operations, with Continental using the airport as one of its national hubs. In 1995, based on hopes that Cleveland Hopkins Intl. Airport might become an international hub for the nation’s major airlines, expansion plans were well underway for lengthening the airport’s runways to accommodate the potential increase in air traffic.

William Hopkins from Wikipedia



From Wikipedia. The link is here



William Rowland Hopkins (July 26, 1869–February 9, 1961) was an American politician of the Republican Party who served as the first city manager of Cleveland, Ohio from 1924 to 1929, during the brief period that Cleveland had a council-manager government instead of a mayor-council government.

Hopkins was born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, the son of David J. and Mary Jeffreys Hopkins. In 1874, the family moved to Cleveland. Hopkins attended Western Reserve Academy by working in the Cleveland Rolling Mills to pay his way through and graduated in 1892. At Western Reserve University, he earned a Bachelor of Arts in 1896. In 1897, he began studying law at Case, while simultaneously serving inCleveland City Council as a Republican. In 1899, he earned his Bachelor of Laws and left city council. Hopkins laid out new industrial plant developments and promoted construction of the Cleveland Short Line Railroad in 1905. The following year, he gave up his law practice and went into business. Hopkins then entered local politics by becoming chairman of the Republican county committee and a member of the election board.

By 1924, Cleveland had seen several controversial political figures in office such as Frederick Kohler and Harry L. Davis. Voters decided to try to extricate municipal government from partisan politics by adopting the city manager plan. Hopkins was selected by local Republican boss Maurice Maschke, former postmaster William J. Murphy, and business manager of the news George Moran as the man who could hold the job as the city’s manager. He was elected to the position by a coalition.

As city manager, Hopkins brought new development to Cleveland. He pushed for the development of parks, improved welfare institutions, wider boulevards, more playgrounds, air pollution control, and the construction of both the Van Sweringen brothers‘ Terminal Tower and Cleveland Stadium. However, because the balance between city council and the city’s central government was outweighed due to Hopkins’ efficiency, council was always at war with the city manager, especially the newly-elected Peter Witt. Now with the city manager plan, council’s role was diminished to such an extent and it almost became irrelevant. This, however, did not stop Hopkins’ ambition for development.

His first plan was to fill in the lakefront, behind jetties. When first announced, the idea seemed almost incomprehensible. By the time he left office, however, the land saw development and today the landfill is occupied by Cleveland Browns Stadium, its predecessor Cleveland Stadium, much of the eastern portion of Cleveland Memorial Shoreway and the Cleveland Burke Lakefront Airport.

Hopkins was recognized as being very charismatic. An excellent speaker, he was nicknamed by Witt as “Chautauqua Bill.” He won support of Cleveland’s ethnic large population, receiving praise in HebrewGermanHungarianCzechPolish and other foreign-language papers (there were roughly a half-dozen in big circulation at the time).

In 1925, Hopkins proposed a bold new initiative; the construction of a large airport located ten miles southwest of downtown. At the time, the idea seemed like a pipe dream with the introduction of the airplane being relatively new. Still, Hopkins was fascinated by aviation and felt that if Cleveland were to ever modernize itself, an airport would be solid starting point. When Hopkins urged the purchase of piece of land from Brook Park, sounding off ideas of planes flying from Cleveland to Paris and London with thousands of people on board (Now a reality Cleveland-London flight service in 1999 and Cleveland to Paris in 2008), Witt ridiculed the idea. The rest of council, however, avoided opposing it openly, so the land was purchased.

However, council still felt that Hopkins had acquired too much control and removed him from office in January 1930. His replacement was Daniel E. Morgan, the second and final city manager of Cleveland. In 1931, Hopkins became a member of council again and fought unsuccessfully to keep the city manager system. However, it was soon overturned and the city returned to a mayor-council government. In 1933, Hopkins retired from politics. In his honor, the Cleveland Municipal Airport was renamed Cleveland Hopkins International Airport in 1951. Hopkins died in 1961 and was buried in Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland, Ohio.


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