CWRU Links
Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

WOLF, EDITH ANISFIELD

WOLF, EDITH ANISFIELD

WOLF, EDITH ANISFIELD (1889-23 Jan. 1963), poet, businesswoman, and philanthropist, was born in Cleveland to Doniella (Guttenberg) and JOHN ANISFIELD and graduated from Women's College (later Flora Stone Mather College). On 7 Aug. 1918, she married attorney Eugene E. Wolf. Able to read French, German, and Spanish, Wolf was devoted to literature and charitable work; she managed her family's estate and wrote poetry from her downtown office. She published several books of poetry, including Snacks (1938) and Balance (1942), as well as magazine articles. In 1934 she established an annual $1,000 prize for the outstanding book in race relations in honor of her father. In 1941, in honor of her husband, she added a second prize of $1,000 for a creative book that performs "an outstanding service in clarifying the problems of racial relations," and the first award was then designated for the best work of a scientific nature on racial relations. Among the winners of the Anisfield-Wolf awards have been Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and LANGSTON HUGHES. In 1943, Wolf was elected by the school board to serve on the board of the CLEVELAND PUBLIC LIBRARY. Upon her death, she left all her books to the library; willed her family home on East Blvd. to the Cleveland Welfare Fed.; and left funds to the CLEVELAND FOUNDATION, which were used to establish the $5,000 Anisfield-Wolf Award for community service. Wolf, who had no children, died in Cleveland. Her remains are kept in the Knollwood Mausoleum.