Scranton Peninsula then and now

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Scranton Peninsula is one of those places in Cleveland’s urban core that gets no love and seems to always be late to the party because of it. While it’s finally starting to see some significant redevelopment, the 80-acre Scranton Peninsula is historically one of the last areas of the Flats to get attention from investors and developers.

That’s been the case ever since a guy named Joel Scranton moved here more than 200 years ago with a schooner full of raw leather to sell. Born in Massachusetts in 1793, Scranton grew up in Oswego County, New York and came to Cleveland at the age of 26. In addition to being a leather merchant, he expanded into selling dry goods, groceries and crockery. With the money he made, he paid Chester Tuttle, an early settler from Connecticut, $450 to buy 22 acres on the west side of the Cuyahoga River and began operating a farm to supply his store across the river in Cleveland. Back then, Cleaveland was spelled with an extra A, Scranton Peninsula was called Scranton’s Flats and the land actually was in Brooklyn Township, not Cleveland or even Ohio City which was a separate city then.

Scranton bought more land, including from Alfred Kelly, Cleveland’s first village president and father of the Ohio Canal that caused Cleveland to become a major port on the Great Lakes. In the 1830s and 40s, as the city grew up across the river on Columbus Peninsula and to the east on Stone’s Levee, or uphill in Ohio City, Scranton’s patch of greenery remained unspoiled. He resisted overtures to buy his land that was so large and so devoid of civilization that he hosted shooting contests and circuses although hopefully not at the same time.

Watch the video to learn more about the area.

Related articles:

NRP Group’s renews plans for Scranton Peninsula

NRP Group taking fresh look at Scranton Peninsula

Great Lakes Brewing Co. to start Scranton Peninsula work

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