A Glimpse Into Our Past
In October 7, 1843, twenty-eight people organized the Disciples of Christ Church at Doan’s Corners – now Euclid Avenue and East 105th Street – in Cleveland. The idea of a new church in Doan’s Corners had been under consideration by its residents for some time.
Early meetings were held at member’s homes and then, later, in a little stone schoolhouse on the northwest corner of Euclid Avenue and Doan Lane. In 1848 the congregation was given permission to build a church southwest of the little stone schoolhouse. In 1849 the new structure, built primarily by members, was opened. Baptisms were conducted in Doan Brook and, sometimes, in Lake Erie. In 1864, they welcomed their first resident minister.
In August of 1865 the congregation began to think about a larger building to accommodate its 120 members. Begun in April of 1866 and in use by February of 1867, the new building was known as the East Cleveland Christian Church. Perched on an acre of ground, the English Gothic structure seated 400.
In 1872 the area known as East Cleveland became a part of Cleveland proper, so, in 1874, a decision was made to change the name of East Cleveland Christian Church to Euclid Avenue Christian Church.
September of 1906 saw the beginning of more change. The Gothic sanctuary was torn down and a new Romanesque building was begun.The new building at Euclid and East 100th Street, dedicated in April of 1908, was constructed with green stone masonry, had stained glass windows, dark hand-carved oak interiors, a marble baptizer, a pipe organ with 1,341 pipes, and a sanctuary that seated 1,100. With an office, an assembly room, many classrooms, a dining room, kitchen, gymnasium and a bowling alley, there was plenty of room for the 698 members.
In early 1952 it became clear that: the population of the neighborhood was largely adult and extremely mobile; Protestant churches were numerous in the area; and new churches were being established in residential areas, closer to the center of their present memberships. A strategy committee was appointed to study the situation and, after receiving its report, the congregation decided to relocate.Building and Site Committees were appointed and a Building Fund was established to raise money for a site and construction of a first unit, with complete relocation to be accomplished within five years.
In January of 1954 the new site was approved and land purchased on Mayfield Road between Yellowstone and Oakridge Roads. In April of that year, the green stone building was sold to the East Mount Zion Baptist Church who had outgrown their facilities at East 102nd and Cedar.
Ground was broken in June of 1955 for the present building. The first service was held in the new Fellowship Hall in December and the first issue of the Church Life at Yellowstone and Mayfield newsletter was distributed. The new church building was dedicated in May of 1956 and, in September of 1966, the Oakridge Education Wing was in use. On slightly over three acres of land, there now lies a large sanctuary, a chapel, classrooms, a Fellowship Hall, a kitchen, a library, a play area for children, a pastor’s study and offices.
Just as the name ‘East Cleveland Christian Church’ was changed in 1872, the congregation voted early in 2008 for yet another name change. After over 50 years on Mayfield Road, ‘Euclid Avenue Christian Church’ became ‘Disciples Christian Church’.