IRELAND, JAMES DUANE (1 Dec. 1913-26 Jan. 1991) was a Cleveland industrialist and corporate leader who served on the boards of numerous institutions. He was an original trustee of the First Union Realty Co. (1961-1984), a pioneer in coal mining modernization, and a developer in BRATENAHL and UNIVERSITY CIRCLE.
Ireland was born in Duluth, Minnesota to Elizabeth Clark Ring and James D. Ireland, a partner with the M.A. Hanna Co., who died in 1921. In 1929 Elizabeth married William G. Mather. Raised in Cleveland, Ireland attended HAWKEN SCHOOL, St. Paul's School and Kent School. He graduated from Cornell University in 1937.
Interested in mining, Ireland joined the Hanna Coal Co. in St. Clairsville, Ohio where he worked his way up the company, becoming division superintendent by 1945. In 1946 he moved to West Virginia and founded the Peters Creek Coal Co. which became the Peerless Eagle Coal Co., a leader in the field of mechanized coal mining. He sold the company in 1975. Ireland returned to Cleveland in 1950 and, in 1951, was elected to the board of Cleveland-Cliffs. He chaired the executive committee from 1980 to 1986.
Ireland was a founder and chairman of the Bratenahl Development Corp. and vice chairman of University Circle Inc. He served on the boards of the Garden Center of Greater Cleveland (see CLEVELAND BOTANICAL GARDEN), UNIVERSITY HOSPITALS OF CLEVELAND, the CLEVELAND MUSEUM OF ART, the WESTERN RESERVE HISTORICAL SOCIETY, and Society National Bank.
Ireland married Cornelia Wilmot Allen in 1946. They had four children: James III, George, Lucy, and Cornelia. Ireland was Episcopalian. He is buried in LAKE VIEW CEMETERY.