Tremont from the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History
TREMONT is an industrial/residential neighborhood on Cleveland’s near west side. Its boundaries include the CUYAHOGA RIVER to the east and north and Valentine Ave. to the south. Originally part of BROOKLYN (Old Brooklyn) Twp., the area was a section of OHIO CITY (CITY OF OHIO) from 1836-54. In 1851 a group of prominent citizens founded CLEVELAND UNIVERSITY in what was then called Cleveland Hts. The institution lasted only until 1853 but its buildings were later used by 3 other educational endeavors, including theHUMISTON INSTITUTE and Western Reserve Homeopathic Hospital, predecessor to HURON RD. HOSPITAL. Lincoln Hts. succeeded Cleveland Hts. and Univ. Hts. as the name for the neighborhood; only with the construction of Tremont School in 1910 did the neighborhood officially get its most recent name. Tremont’s industrial base began with the establishment of the LAMSON AND SESSIONS CO. in 1869 on Scranton Rd. It and numerous later enterprises provided employment to many new immigrants who settled in the area, including IRISH andGERMANS in the 1860s; POLES, 1890s; GREEKS and Syrians (see ARAB AMERICANS), 1900s; displaced UKRAINIANS, 1950s; and Puerto Ricans (see HISPANIC COMMUNITY) in the 1960s. A total of 30 nationalities have lived or were living in Tremont as of 1994.
Complementing the neighborhood’s ethnic variety is its architecture. Many churches are on state and/or national historic landmark registers, including ST. THEODOSIUS RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CATHEDRAL (1912), Pilgrim Congregational (1893), St. Michael the Archangel (1888), and St. Augustine Roman Catholic (1896). By the 1980s, however, Tremont was a run-down, isolated neighborhood in which 68% of the housing had been built before 1900. The population shrank from 36,686 in 1920 to 10,304 in 1980. Closing of the Clark Ave. Bridge and construction of highways I-71 and I-490 cut the area off from the rest of Cleveland. MERRICK HOUSE SOCIAL SETTLEMENT, founded in 1919 as a neighborhood settlement, served as a community focal point for Tremont, and the Tremont West Development Corp. was organized in 1979 to revitalize the area through rehabilitation of housing and neighborhood economic development. Citizens also helped to renovate LINCOLN PARK in the 1980s. By the early 1990s, Tremont was also known for its diverse restaurants and a growing artists’ community.