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The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

SLAVIC VILLAGE/BROADWAY - The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

SLAVIC VILLAGE/BROADWAY is a predominantly East European neighborhood on the southeast side of Cleveland. Extending from KINGSBURY RUN southward to Grant Ave., it is bounded on the west by I-77 and on the east by E. 79th St. and Broadway Ave. It encompasses 2 ethnic subneighborhoods, the largely Czech KARLIN to the west and the old Polish "Warszawa" to the east. Warszawa was the primary area of settlement for Cleveland's POLES, who came in the 1880s to work in such neighborhood industries as the Cleveland Rolling Mills (see CLEVELAND ROLLING MILL STRIKES). Their lives were focused around their parish church of ST. STANISLAUS CHURCH at E. 65th St. and Forman Ave. and the prosperous Polish commercial district along Fleet Ave. and E. 71st St. Another commercial hub for the neighborhood, more cosmopolitan in nature, flourished from 1920-40 at E. 55th St. and Broadway, which was regarded, along with DOAN'S CORNERS, as a "second downtown" for Cleveland. Polish and other ethnic settlements in the neighborhood peaked during the same period and then began the long postwar decline, due to suburban out-migration. An attempt to revitalize the community was begun with the organization of Neighborhood Ventures, Inc., in Oct. 1977 by Teddy and Donna Sliwinski, along with architect Kaszimier Wieclaw. Choosing the name Slavic Village to attract other ethnic groups, they began transforming many of the deteriorated buildings along Fleet Ave. into a uniform Polish "Hylander" style. The nonprofit Slavic Village Assn. was organized in 1978 to preserve residential and commercial buildings through its sponsorship of the annual Slavic Village Harvest Festival, which in its 17th year (1993) was drawing 100,000 people. In 1990 the Slavic Village Assn. merged with the Broadway Development Corp. as the Slavic Village Broadway Development Corp. to coordinate community-based revitalization activities in the Broadway neighborhood.

Last Modified: 30 Jun 1997 10:58:17 AM

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