Author: Green Book Cleveland Team

Ravenna Town & Country Club

Ravenna Town & Country Club was a private membership club for African Americans on South Diamond Street at the edge of what was the city limits in the 1960s. It offered a range of leisure and recreation, including a golf course, and social events. The club may have been on the site of present-day Diamond […]

Solomon’s Gold Bar Delicatessen & Restaurant

Solomon’s Gold Bar Delicatessen & Restaurant (or simply Gold Bar) was owned by Ben Solomon. It moved to 14700 Kinsman Road in 1947 and was replaced by Cafe Tia Juana. It moved again to 13905 Cedar Rd. in the Cedar Center shopping plaza in South Euclid in 1957. Additional information coming soon. Green Book Details […]

Springfield Lake Park

Springfield Lake Park in Lakemore outside Akron was at least the occasional site of African American church camp meetings and organizational outings between the 1900s and the 1930s. Additional information coming soon. Resources Cleveland Gazette. June 27, 1903. “Seiberling, B-W, Eagles’ Outing Are Scheduled; All-Nations, Odd Fellows, Vets, Negro Picnics Planned for Week-End.” Akron Beacon […]

United Recreation

United Recreation was the first Black-owned bowling alley in the United States. Located on Cedar Avenue at East 82nd Street, the bowling alley was a response to racial discrimination. Postal worker and pioneering Black bowler J. Elmer Reed started his own bowling league, the National Bowling Association, a block away in 1939. Difficulties in gaining […]

Vim Lunch

Vim Lunch, also known as Vim Restaurant, was located on the north side of Superior Avenue just west of its intersection with West 3rd Street, diagonally across Superior from Hotel Cleveland (now the Renaissance Hotel). The business opened in 1937, but an earlier restaurant or restaurants were located in the same building going back at […]

Wallace Beach

Wallace Beach (or Wallace’s Beach) was a swimming hole and spot of outdoor recreation along the Aurora Branch of the Chagrin River. The Call & Post made occasional references to Black gatherings at Wallace Beach in the 1930s. The leisure spot featured “many natural beauties to which have been added picnic benches, dance pavilion, refreshment […]

Warren Pool

Warren Pool in Warren, Ohio, was the object of a 1940s court battle over segregation. Additional information coming soon. Resources “Warren Pool Case To State Supreme Court: New Legal Fight Looms Between City Officials, NAACP Over Racial Issue.” Call & Post. August 14, 1948. Wiltse, Jeff. Contested Waters: A Social History of Swimming Pools in […]

Wayside Bar and Motel

Crown Prince Waterford, a Jonesboro, Arkansas–born blues musician, opened the Wayside Bar and Motel in Ravenna in 1958. Despite its founding by a noted musician, the business seems to have faded quickly into obscurity. Waterford appears to have sold his interest in the venture within its first few years of operation. No further information is […]

Wee Motel

The Wee Motel was a small ten-room motel located in the McGuffey Heights area on Youngstown’s east side. The motel had several rooms in a structure built onto the rear of the owner’s ranch-style home. It was demolished in 2019 several years after closing and falling into a dilapidated state. Green Book Details Wee Motel […]

Whitmore’s Barbecue

When 1100 people come to any one corner for any one purpose, somebody has given them SOMETHING to come for. So said the Call & Post about the opening day at Whitmore’s Dream Barbecue at 8318 Cedar Avenue in 1952. But Virgil Whitmore Sr., a native of Dangerfield, Texas, was no newcomer to the barbecue […]

Wingfoot Lake

Wingfoot Lake in Mogadore, named for Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company’s logo—the winged shoe of Mercury—supplied water for Goodyear’s blimp factory that opened during World War I. Wingfoot Lake hosted many company employee outings in the several decades before becoming a state park, including picnics specifically for Black workers in the 1930s. Additional information coming […]

Woodland Hills Pool

Woodland Hills Pool was located in Woodland Hills Park (now called Luke Easter Park) on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive just north of Kinsman Road. It was a site of racial threats against Black swimmers in the 1930s-50s. Resources “Luke Easter Park.” Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Michney, Todd. Surrogate Suburbs: Black Upward Mobility and […]

Yankee Lake Park

Yankee Lake Park was a leisure destination located near Brookfield, Ohio, to the north of Youngstown and just west of Sharon, Pennsylvania. Although the park got its start in the early 20th century, in 1940, the Pittsburgh Courier reported that Eugene Cooke of Farrell, Pennsylvania, hoped to turn the venue into a full-fledged summer resort […]