The WILLIAMSON BUILDING, which stood on PUBLIC SQUARE, served as the monumental gateway to EUCLID AVE. for over 80 years. This 17-story building was begun in April 1899, and was ready for occupancy on 1 April 1900. It was the tallest building in the city when constructed. It replaced an earlier, 4-story Williamson Bldg. on the site which had been built 1889-90 and damaged by fire in 1895. Both stood on the site of the old Samuel Williamson homestead.

The Williamson Building on Public Square, ca. 1920s. Courtesy of the Plain Dealer.
Horse-drawn wagons and pedestrians fill the streets in this image of the Williamson Building on Public Square, ca. 1910. Courtesy of the Plain Dealer.

The Williamson Bldg. was built for the Williamson Co., which was headed by H. Clark Ford. The building was designed by GEORGE B. POST AND SONS in a classical style, and the structural steel work was done by the Van Dorn Co. The building featured a grand arched entrance (later altered), a semi-circular lobby with floors and walls of marble, and bronze elevator doors and surrounds. Some of the city's leading professional men and businesses occupied the building. Among the tenants were the Cleveland Trust Co., the FEDERAL RESERVE BANK of Cleveland, the Cleveland Stock Exchange, the Cleveland Advertising Club, and the Cleveland Real Estate Board. David Knight Ford, son of H. Clark Ford, had offices in the building from 1921 to 1982. In 1944 the Williamson Co. acquired the adjacent Cuyahoga Bldg. and the two were joined on the interior. They were demolished in Oct. 1982 for a new headquarters building for Sohio (see BP AMERICA).

Johannesen, Eric. From Tower to Tower (1983).

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