The GEORGE IRA VAIL RESIDENCE, located at 2197 Harcourt Dr. in CLEVELAND HEIGHTS in the AMBLER HEIGHTS Historic District, is a 4,110-square-foot, three-story Tudor Revival style residence designed by architect FRANK B. MEADE at the cost of $27,500 in 1906. Meade designed an additional 4,967 square-foot, three-story Tudor Revial Colonal style residence at the cost of $10,000 at 2193 Harcourt Dr. which was connected by a covered walkway. Both structures were featured in a 1909 issue of the Western Architect publication as the residence of George I. Vail. The homes were also highlighted in the 1911 Gravure Illustration Company’s Art Work of Cleveland Ohio Both Tudor-style homes were built for STANDARD OIL CO. Organizer, George Ira Vail I.; his wife Fannie Case-Vail; daughters Virginia Vail; Eloise Vail-Knight; son George Ira Vail II; wife Elizabeth Wickham-Vail; grandaughter Elizabeth Vail; and grandson George Ira Vail III. Additionally, a 1922 Cleveland Blue Book lists George Ira Vail I’s grandaugther Catherine Frances Knight; HARRY LORENZO VAIL; wife Sarah Augusta Wickham-Vail; and son HERMAN LANSING VAIL as residents. In 1910 a sleeping porch was added to the 2197 Harcourt home. The carriage house was shared by the Vail family which included seven rooms and a horse stable. The 2197 Harcourt brick home is a square plan with a asymmetrical pedimented entry porch supported by square brick columns. A large three-part window with an arch is located on the first floor. A wall dormer in front brick quoins on back pilasters on the room to the side. The interior features spectacular architectural detail; millwork; leaded glass windows; five fireplaces; and gleaming hardwood floors. The foyer opens with an impressive staircase. An arched ceiling is present in the sunroom. The mansion was furnished with paintings, antiques, hand carved furniture, and Venetian glass. In 1929, the Vail family hosted CLEVELAND MUSEUM OF ART Director WILLIAM M. MILLIKEN as a guest speaker in their home. At an unknown time, the walkway was removed from both homes. The Vail family sold the home to Larry and Barbara Nault on July 10, 1970. On August 30, 1974, surgeon Dr. Michael D. Hall and wife Sharon L. Hall purchased the home. Hall added dog kennels and a dogrun on side of the house for his dog breeding operation. On May 16, 1977, podiatrist Dr. Robert T. Bair and NASA JOHN H. GLENN RESEARCH CENTER physicist, Virginia L. Bachelor-Bair purchased the home for $82,000. The Bairs expanded the kitchen with modern applicances and replaced deterioated fencing to the home. From 1998 to 2002 the home had two owners businessman Victor Marquardt; and Channel 19 News reporter David Wittman. The Marquardts removed a closet in order to expand the master bathroom. In 2004, the George Ira Vail home was featured in the Heights Heritage Home Tour. The owners Dr. Peter John Evans & Attorney, Caroline Marnoch provided “minor cosmetic changes” by adding salavaged stained glass windows from a demolished home in Rogers City, Michigan; painted the barrel vault ceiling of the old hallway that originally connected the house with its twin house next door; and expanded the master bedroom. Today, the home is privately owned.

Angelina Bair

View image at HaitiTrust

View image at HaitiTrust

Finding aid for the Herman Lansing Vail Family Papers. WRHS.


City of Cleveland Heights Planning Department. George I. Vail Residence File. (n.d.).

The Cleveland Blue Book Social Directory. (1922).

Cleveland Landmarks Commission. Frank Meade Architect Buildings. (n.d.).

Cleveland Plain Dealer. Club Notes. (1929).

Cleveland Plain Dealer. Sale by Fordom: Well-Known Cleveland Family. (1970).

Cuyahoga County Auditor. Deed of Sale to Larry and Barbara Nault. (1975).

Cuyahoga County Property Search. 2197 Harcourt Drive. (2024).

Future Heights. Heights Annual Heritage Home Tour. (2004).

Gravure Illustration Company. Art Work of Cleveland Ohio. (1911). 

Haiti Trust. The Western Architect: Residence of Mrs. George Vail, Cleveland, OH. (1909).

Waniesky, D. Ohio Historic Inventory: Bair Residence. (1983).

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