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Van Sweringen Residence

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1910, H.T. Jeffrey; 1924 remodel, Philip Lindsley Small. 17400 S. Park Blvd.

Completed in 1910, the residence of brothers Oris P. and Mantis J. Van Sweringen sits on South Park Boulevard, near the east end of Shaker Lakes Park and across from Horseshoe Lake. This tranquil setting epitomizes the garden suburb of Shaker Heights that the brothers developed near Cleveland. H.T. Jeffrey’s original design for the house was massive and imposing but somewhat undistinguished, although a newspaper article described it as “one of the most strikingly beautiful homes of the spacious, pretentious sort in this part of the country.” In 1924, architect Philip L. Small thoroughly remodeled the house, creating its current Tudor Revival appearance. Situated on a large landscaped lot, the rambling country estate-like house typifies the Van Sweringens’ architectural requirements for quality materials and period revival styles. It features a steeply pitched slate roof, paired stone chimneys and crenellated turret, and half-timbered dormers and gabled projections. Small designed multiple buildings for the Van Sweringen brothers including Shaker Square (with Small and Rowley) and Daisy Hill, their country estate in nearby Hunting Valley. After the latter became the brothers’ primary residence in the mid-1920s, their sisters, Edith and Carrie, occupied the South Park Boulevard residence. The house remains in use as a private residence.

References

Forgac, Patricia J., “Shaker Village Historic District,” Cuyahoga County, Ohio. National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination Form, 1984. National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C.

Harwood, Herbert H. Jr. Invisible Giants: The Empires of Cleveland’s Van Sweringen Brothers. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2003.

Johannesen, Eric. Cleveland Architecture, 1876-1976. Cleveland: The Western Reserve Historical Society, 1976.

Johannesen, Eric, “Shaker Square Historic District,” Cuyahoga County, Ohio. National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination Form, 1983. National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C.

Marshall, Bruce T. Shaker Heights. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2006.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Peter Ketter
Coordinator: 
Barbara Powers
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Data

Timeline

  • 1910

    Built
  • 1924

    Remodeled

What's Nearby

Citation

Peter Ketter, "Van Sweringen Residence", [Shaker Heights, Ohio], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/OH-01-035-0065-03.

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