2348 Overlook Road (1998)


The College Club


In 1903 Frank Meade and Abram Garfield, son of President Garfield, designed this house for W. B. B. Alexander. Seventy-five years later, when it achieved Cleveland Heights Landmark status, the architectural description reads as follows: "The house shows the influence of the contemporary English Arts & Crafts Movement, whose principles were a return to simplicity through a study of vernacular building traditions. The more strictly crafts part of the movement is seen in the metallic glazed tiles and art glass in the hall. The leaded glass window in the breakfast room is particularly beautiful. Victorian survivals can be seen in the tall narrow proportions of the front gable and in the planning of the billiard room off the stair landing."


The metallic tiles are very similar to those designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh for the tea rooms in Glasgow. The "billiard room" is now the office of the College Club. The house, with its graceful grand staircase, has been the scene of many wedding receptions and other festivities.


W. B. B. Alexander was the president of the national Screw and Manufacturing Company, and the house is still frequently referred to as the "Alexander house," even though eighty years have passed since he sold it to D. Edward Dangler with the proviso that no alcohol be served on the premises for fifty years. Mr. Dangler was founder in 1880 of the first company to manufacture gasoline stoves. In 1951 the Dangler estate sold the home to the College Club, which is currently celebrating its hundredth anniversary as an organization.


In its early years the Club met at members' homes. Then it rented rooms in various buildings, and in 1913 purchased its own home on East 93rd Street, where members met until the move to the Heights. The College Club was founded in the days when the small number of women who were college graduates often felt isolated in a society which expected them to find intellectual stimulation in such activities as hand-painting china or embroidering pillows. The Club was designed to further their "social, philanthropic and literary interests," a mission which continues today in a somewhat different atmosphere, with men now being eligible for membership. In the meantime, the leadership of the College Club has done a magnificent job of maintaining and improving their Landmark home.