The EUCLID AVE. CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH, part of the United Church of Christ, organized as the First Presbyterian Church of EAST CLEVELAND in Nov. 1843 (a different entity than FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH OF EAST CLEVELAND, organized in 1807) and incorporated in 1847 with 62 members. It grew out of a Sunday school started in 1828 at DOAN'S CORNERS by Sally Cozad Mather Hale and associated with the "Plan of Union," a cooperative church-founding effort between PRESBYTERIANS and CONGREGATIONALISTS. The congregation met in homes and barns until a plain 2-story brick building was built in 1845 at EUCLID AVE. and Doan (E. 105th) St. In Feb. 1852 the church severed its connection with the presbytery and for a decade was known as the Independent Presbyterian Church. The congregation adopted the Congregational style of church government and in 1862 became known as First Congregational Church of East Cleveland. In 1867 a larger brick building of Ohio sandstone was built at Euclid and Logan (96th) St. Dedicated in 1868, it had a capacity of 600 and cost $25,000. The congregation numbered 109. In 1872 the name was changed to Euclid Ave. Congregational Church. A Romanesque building of Ohio sandstone was dedicated on the same site, 9606 Euclid, in Sept. 1887.
Euclid Ave. Congregational started 4 churches as missions, including Park Congregational, at Crawford and Hough avenues, and Lakeview Congregational, both ca. 1890. Hough Ave. Congregational was merged into Euclid Ave. Congregational in 1934. As the population of the surrounding neighborhood changed in the late 1940s and 1950s, the church decided against relocating in the suburbs. Membership declined from a peak of 1200-1400 in the 1950s to 212 by 1995, but the church remained a viable multicultural instutution, offering a wide variety of community outreach programs such as daycare, the Hough House Service Center, and a program for chemically dependent mothers. The church building was refurbished in the 1980s, and plans were underway in 1995 to refurbish the entire grounds.
In March of 2010 the church building was completely destroyed by fire after a lightning strike.
One Hundred Twenty-fifth Anniversary of the Euclid Avenue Congregational Church, Cleveland, Ohio 1843-1968 (1968)
Euclid Avenue Congregational Church. "Celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Building" (1987)
See Also: RELIGION