2747 Fairmount Boulevard (1981, 1990, 1996)


St. Paul's Episcopal Church


The parish of St. Paul's was founded 150 years ago, with services being held in a third-floor room at Superior and West Third Street. Three years later, fire engulfed their nearly completed wooden church at Euclid and East Fourth Street. While rival fire companies argued over which one had arrived first at the scene - and therefore had the privilege of putting out the flames and getting paid - the church burned to the ground. A new church built of sturdier material served the parish until 1876, when it moved to Euclid and Case (E. 40th), the heart of "Millionaire's Row."


The present St. Paul's was designed in the English Gothic style by Byers Hayes of Walker and Weeks, the architectural firm responsible for many important Cleveland buildings, including Severance Hall, Public Auditorium, the Federal Reserve Bank, the Cleveland Public Library, and the Municipal Stadium. The graceful tower was dedicated in 1928, but it was not until 1951 that the church itself was completed. In 1990 a new addition was completed, with six classrooms, handicapped access, and a tranquil Prayer Garden.


The move to Cleveland Heights was accomplished during the 30-year rectorship of Dr. Walter Breed, a humanist and scholar who was famous for his stimulating 18-minute sermons. Another person identified with St. Paul's was the organist and music director, Dr. Walter Blodgett, whose musical programs often included members of the Cleveland Orchestra.


The parish hall of St. Paul's Episcopal Church is named for Dr. Beverly Tucker, the Episcopal bishop who was noted for his efforts to promote interracial harmony. It is perhaps appropriate that the Heights Community Congress, dedicated to the promotion of integrated communities, will be serving the 20th Anniversary Tea of the Heights Heritage Home Tour in Tucker Hall.