Cleveland 101 – Firsts

Cleveland Firsts – There are many “firsts” that took place in Cleveland such as:

Cleveland Disc Jockey Alan Freed  produced the nation’s first rock concert, the Moondog Coronation Ball at the Cleveland Arena in 1952.

First Modern Presidential Campaign. Republican US Senator from Ohio used his money and business skills to successfully manage William McKinley’s presidential campaigns in 1896 and 1900.

First Convention broadcast on the Radio. When the GOP nominated President Calvin Coolidge at the Republican National Convention of 1924 in Cleveland. it was the first GOP convention to give women equal representation and the first to broadcast its proceedings through radio.

The first Industrial Park in the world was GE Nela Park in East Cleveland

First Modern Building Code Mayor Tom L. Johnson was called the best Mayor of the best-governed city in the United States. He established the country’s first comprehensive modern building code in 1904; the code became a model for many U.S. cities.

Carl Stokes. Carl Stokes was the first black elected mayor of a major U.S. city.

The World’s first Community Foundation was The Cleveland Foundation

The first American to win a Nobel Prize in science – Physicist Albert A. Michelson

The first African American to play on the PGA TourCharlie Sifford, the Jackie Robinson of Golf.

The first sponsorship for a male African American athlete was when Adidas sponsored Jesse Owens.

The oldest African-American theater in the USKaramu House

Numerous Medical Firsts from Cleveland Clinic

First home of Alcoholics Anonymous

USS Cod – First international submarine-to-submarine rescue in history

First Science Fiction Fan Magazine.  By Jerry Siegel the creator of Superman.

Dorothy Fuldheim. The First Lady of Television News was the first woman in the United States to anchor a television news broadcast as well to host her own television show.

Group Plan of Cleveland. The earliest and the most fully realized plan for a major city outside of Washington, D.C. and remains one of the best extant examples of the City Beautiful Movement

Louis Stokes. The first black congressman elected in the state of Ohio and the first black on the House Appropriations Committee.

Rear Admiral Kidd Historical Marker. Rear Admiral in the United States Navy. The highest ranking casualty at Pearl Harbor, he became the first U.S. Navy flag officer killed in action in World War II as well as the first killed in action against any foreign enemy.

St. Elizabeth of Hungary Catholic Church This historic Roman Catholic church in the Buckeye Road neighborhood on the east side of Cleveland is the earliest ethnic parish established for Hungarians in the US.

Saint Mary Romanian Cathedral. The first Romanian Orthodoxy in America and a Cultural Center of the Romanian Americans.

Sikh Gurdwara in Richfield. This was the first Sikh Gurdwara in Ohio and home of The Guru Nanak Foundation of Greater Cleveland Area which was named after Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikh Faith.

Charles Young. Charles Young was the third African-American graduate of West Point, the first black U.S. national park superintendent, first black military attaché, first black to achieve the rank of colonel, and highest-ranking black officer in the Regular Army.

Baseball Firsts


If you found something on this site useful, please consider a contribution (anything will help) via the Paypal button below to help us maintain and upgrade this resource.


Thank You