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  Riverside Cemetery
  3607 Pearl Road   Cleveland, Ohio   44109

  216.351.4800

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The stories of the residents of Riverside Cemetery tell the history of Cleveland and northeast Ohio. Here at Riverside, one can wander among the monuments to those lives, from the early settlers to great industrialists, of the immigrants to intellectuals, and wives and husbands whose own unique lives remain an inspiration to their loved ones. The biographies below highlight the lives of a few of the more prominent residents memorialized at Riverside.

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JOHN N. ACKLEY 1835-1925  |   WILLIAM J. O. ASTRUP  1845-1915

JOSIAH BARBER, SR.  1771-1842 | JOSIAH BARBER, JR.  1825-1884

FRED A. BLOETSCHER  1885-1918  | TITUS N. BRAINARD  1825-1910

MATTHEW FREDERICK BRAMLEY  1868-1941 | FRANCIS BRANCH  1812-1877

STEPHEN BUHRER  1825-1907 | DANIEL CHATTERSON  1825-1897

DIODATE CLARK  1798-1876 | HON. JAMES M. COFFINBERRY  1818-1891

JOHN B. COWLE  1826-1914 | JAMES MILTON CURTISS  1840-1916

JOHN N. DAYKIN  1829-1892 | LINDA ANNE EASTMAN  1867-1963

HARRY M. FARNSWORTH  1862-1955 | CLAUDE HANSCOMB FOSTER  1872-1965

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CARL E. GEHRING  1830-1893 | HENRY HOFFMANN   1827-1880

CHARLES WILLIAM HOPKINSON  1865-1950
| AVERY HOPWOOD  1883-1928

JOHN GILES JENNINGS  1825-1896 | JOHN GOULD JENNINGS  1856-1937

CARLOS JONES  1827-1897 | THOMAS H. LAMSON  1827-1882

ISAAC  P. LAMSON  1832- 1912 | ISAAC LEISY  1838-1892

AUSTIN LLOYD  1885-1989 | ROBERT LOCKWOOD, JR  1915-2006

NICHOLAS MEYER  1809-1884 | JOHN AND RUBY MILLER

OMAR EUGENE MUELLER  1880-1946 |
GEORGE V. MUTH  1834-1899

O-Z

FREDERICK W. PELTON  1827-1902

DANIEL P. RHODES  1814-1875 | JAMES FORD RHODES  1848-1927

ROBERT R. RHODES 1845-1916 | JOHN NEWTON RICHARDSON  1837-1902

REV. HERMAN J. RUETENIK  1826-1914 | MARTIN RUETENIK  1868-1947

LEONARD B. SCHLATHER  1834-1918 | CHRISTIAN SCHUELE 1849-1926

SAMUEL W. SESSIONS  1824-1902  | JULIUS SPANG  1852-1950

OMAR N. STEELE  1843-1911  | MARGARET (MAGGIE) RAUSHA WARFUEL TAYLOR  1846-1875

GEORGE A. TINNERMAN  1845-1925 | ALBERT H. TINNERMAN  1879-1961

ROBERT B. WALLACE 1834-1911 | FREDERICK W. WALZ 1858-1945

JOHN CHRISTIAN WEIDEMAN  1829-1900


CARL E. GEHRING (1830-1893)

He was born in Wurtemberg, Germany; and at the age of 18, he came to Cleveland and learned the brewing trade. In the 1850's he opened his own brewery and was one of the first to produce lager beer in Cleveland. His brewery became very successful, and in 1874 was the largest in Cleveland. It was located near the West Side Market on Brainard Avenue, which was later renamed Gehring Avenue in his honor.

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HENRY HOFFMANN   1827-1880


The Hoffmann home and brewery.

Of of the eight brewers buried in Riverside Cemetery, Hoffmann personifies the early neighborhood brewerers who supplied the surrounding ethnic neighborhood with their beers of choice. He and Wm. Paschen established a small lager beer brewery on the city's southwest side in 1871. His home still stands at the corner of Fulton and Walton Roads, but his brewery to the rear has long since been demolished.

He is buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 23.

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CHARLES WILLIAM HOPKINSON  1865-1950

The Hopkinson family monument

He was born in Cleveland to Alanson and Harriet Farland Hopkinson. He attended Cleveland Public Schools and graduated from Cornell University in 1887 with a B.S. in Architecture. From 1887-1890 he worked in New York City with the most prominent architects.  In 1890 he returned to Cleveland and opened his own architectural office. He became a noted Architect, Designer, and Builder whose accomplishments included Riverside Cemetery Administration Building, Hough Avenue Congregational Church, Colonial and Clifton Club Houses in Lakewood, Rockefeller Mining Building at CWRU, Lakewood Public Library, and Extensive additions to University Hospital and he supervised the overhaul of the Garfield Monument at Lake View Cemetery

He was twice the National President of the American Institute of Architects. He belonged to the Cleveland Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, serving as President, and the Civil Engineers Club of Cleveland, also serving as President.

He was a member of the Congregational Church. He married Franc Warren, and they had a daughter Ruth. 

He is buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 10.

Riverside Cemetery's gatehouse/office, designed by Charles Hopkinson, as depicted in a 1908 penny postcard.

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AVERY HOPWOOD  1883-1928

He was born in Cleveland and was the son of a butcher. He attended West High School and Western Reserve University before attending and graduating Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Michigan in 1905. He returned to Cleveland and was a reporter for the Cleveland Leader. Thereafter he went to New York. 

Playwright Avery Hopwood, although now almost forgotten, remains the only person to ever have four plays running at the same time on Broadway.  

He became Broadway's leading playwright in the early 20th Century, in the era immediately preceding that of Eugene O'Neill. The New York Times described him as "almost unquestionably the richest of all playwrights". Although known as the "playboy playwright" and accused of mere frivolity, he had a productive career. He was the author/co-author of 33 plays. In her memoir, "What Is Remembered," Alice B. Toklas describes him and photographer-novelist, Carl Van Vechten, as having jointly "created modern New York". They changed everything to their way of seeing and doing. New York became as flamboyant, irresponsible and brilliant as they were. Mr. Hopwood recalled his own original impetus and why he wrote his first play, "Clothes": "An intense admiration for the theater, a fondness for writing, and the ambition to make money, contrived to pave the way for my career as a dramatist; but the influence that focused my efforts was an article that appeared in the Michigan Alumnus, when I was a student at the University. The 'Call of the Playwright' was its title, and in it Mr. De Foe told of the fabulous sums that dramatists had made. The more I thought about it, the more determined I became to try my luck in this field." His first play, "Clothes" was a collaboration with Channing Pollock, and it established his reputation as a writer of light drawing-room comedy. According to New York Telegram critic Leonard Hall, "he was the only living man who could write French farce better than a Frenchman". 

He wrote several Broadway plays such as "The Gold Diggers", "Spanish Love", "Ladies' Night", "Streets of New York", "Fair & Warmer", "The French Doll", "Nobody's Widow", and "The Bat""The Bat" was a mystery and was his most successful play. It was written in collaboration with Mary Roberts Rinehart. It ran for 867 performances. In 1920 he had four simultaneous successes running on Broadway. He and other connoisseurs regarded "Fair and Warmer" as his best play. His "Getting Gertie's Garter" was opened in Cleveland, where he returned at least yearly to spend Christmas with his mother, Jule Prendergast Hopwood, in her home on Clinton Avenue.

In his last years, he spent little time in America. Both artistic and personal freedom seemed constraining to him at home. He died in 1928 while swimming on the French Riviera. There were suspicions about his death, but the coroner's verdict was coronary occlusion. Under the terms of his Will, and after the death of his mother, one-fifth of his estate was left to the University of Michigan. The Will stipulated that prizes be awarded to students who perform the best creative work in fields of dramatic writing, fiction, poetry and the essay. Although many of his writings are almost forgotten, what is remembered today are the awards in his name. The first writing contest was held in 1930-31. The program has honored almost 3,000 students and dispensed over $1.5 million in prize money.

Avery Hopwood
 

His legacy, if not his writing, endures. The University of Michigan Press has reissued "Avery Hopwood: His Life and Plays" by the dramaturge Jack F. Sharrar. If only as a cautionary tale about the transient nature of success, the life of Avery Hopwood should be better understood and the plays more widely known.

He is buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 22 where he rests eternally in front of a tall monument, bearing only his name, and alongside his devoted mother. 

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JOHN GILES JENNINGS  1825-1896

He came to Cleveland in 1849. He was very involved in real estate and insurance. He lived on Jennings Road and undoubtedly named the street. Part of Jennings Road later became West 14 Street.

He was a Founding Trustee of Riverside Cemetery and is buried in Section 5.

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JOHN GOULD JENNINGS  1856-1937

He was the son of John Giles Jennings for whom the familiar Jennings Road was named.

He graduated from Central High School in Cleveland, was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Yale University , and a classmate of William Howard Taft. In 1884 he married the daughter of Isaac Lamson, co-founder of the Lamson & Sessions Corp., maker of bolts, nuts, cotters and wire rope where he was employed as a bookkeeper.

Eventually he advanced to the Presidency of Lamson and Sessions and held that position for many years before ascending to the Chairman of the Board. He still held the latter position at his sudden death from a heart attack on Nov. 21, 1937 while traveling by train for a winter vacation in St. Petersburg , FL. He was also a Vice-President of the Johnston & Jennings Co. of Cleveland which operated four plants in three states which manufactured forges and foundry machines.

As a life-long member of Pilgrim Congregational (UCC) Church he was very active in it throughout his life. In 1929, at the 70th anniversary of the Church, he was presented a special testimonial signed by many hundred persons. It read in part: "Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and upright man, one that feareth God and escheweth evil.' Job 1:8. He was a Trustee of the Church from 1896 until his death, Superintendent of the Sunday School, and Founder/Director of a church orchestra where he played the saxophone and flute. He contributed generously to the development and growth of this landmark Parish.

Jennings was fluent in German, French and Spanish and attended a Polyglot Club luncheon six days a week speaking a different language each day.
He had membership in the Union Club, Shaker Hts. Country Club, Clifton Club and the Westwood Country Club. He was a Director of the Cleveland Chamber of Commerce, a Trustee of Jones Home for 50 years, Cleveland Welfare Foundation, Riverside Cemetery, the City Mission, and an active worker in the Central YMCA.

Funeral Services were held at Pilgrim Church followed by interment in the large Lamson and Sessions family lot in Section 28 of Riverside Cemetery.

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CARLOS JONES  1827-1897

The Jones School and Home is a
Cleveland Landmark within sight of
Riverside Cemetery's gates.
 

He came to Cleveland in 1831, was a dairy farmer, and made his fortune as a manufacturer of farm implements and real estate investing on Pearl Street. He served as Mayor of Brooklyn. With his second wife, Mary, he founded the Jones School and Home for Friendless Children on December 17, 1887. Today, this now century-old facility serves as a treatment center for emotionally disturbed children between the ages of 6 and 16, and is a division of the newly created Applewood Centers Inc. The inspiration for this humanitarian action came from the untimely death years earlier of Carlos's first wife, Delia (age 24), and his only son, John Marvin (age 12). Delia was the granddaughter of Asa Brainard.

Among the founding trustees were such prominent leaders as the former U.S. President, Rutherford Hayes, Hon. James M. Coffinberry, Isaac P. Lamson, and Samuel W. Sessions. Located in the Jones' Family cottage on Pearl Road at Library Avenue, the facility first accommodated only 9 children, but was soon enlarged with dormitories to house 50. A 3-story brick building at 3518 West 25th Street was opened in October, 1903, with a capacity for 75 residents. The main building, renovated in 1971, became an official Cleveland Landmark in 1984, and has recently undergone a 2.25 million dollar addition renovation which will retain its many historical features.

He was a Trustee of Riverside Cemetery and is buried in Section 23.

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THOMAS H. LAMSON  1827-1882

ISAAC P. LAMSON  1832-1912

SAMUEL W. SESSIONS  1824-1902

In October of 1866, these two brothers and their cousin formed a small company named Lamson & Sessions in Connecticut where they made carriage bolts. In 1869, they moved their company to Cleveland and settled with their employees on Jennings Road (today West 14th Street). In 1872 another joint venture established the Cleveland Nut Company which provided the partnership with a full line of fasteners and became the Lamson & Sessions Co. 

The Lamson and Sessions monument

It began to service Cleveland's growing automotive industry, became one of the nation's leading fastener companies, and operated successfully for over a century in Cleveland. The company continued to grow, and during World War I military orders helped it to surpass the $2,000,000 mark in sales. By 1930, Lamson & Sessions had grown from one plant to eight plants nationwide with combined sales of over $11,000,000. It consolidated its Cleveland plants into one plant in the Brooklyn area in 1950. In 1976, the character of the company began to change as it moved away from fasteners into the capital goods industries. It acquired Youngstown Steel Door Co., Medso Inc., Midland Steel Products Co. and Forest City Foundries. In 1980, the company divested itself of the fastener business. The recession in the early 1980's caused large net losses that resulted in the sales of several acquired companies including Forest City Foundries. 

Their distinctive family monument cost $10,000 and was the most expensive work of art here. The backside of the monument displays the year 1877. It was written up in local literature as a tourist attraction. During the time these gentlemen lived in the Cleveland area, they were all very active in Community affairs. Samuel Sessions and Isaac Lamson also helped organize the Jones Home for Children with another of our early Trustees, Carlos Jones. They were also involved with the founding of the Visiting Nurse Association, Pilgrim Congregational Church, and the first Domestic Science classes in schools.

Samuel Sessions was a Founding Trustee of Riverside Cemetery and was later joined on our Board by Isaac and Thomas Lamson. They are buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 28.

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ISAAC LEISY  1838-1892

A 19th century lithograph of the
Leisy Brewery.
Isaac Leisy founded The Leisy Brewery on Train Avenue in 1873. The brewery was passed on to his son Otto, and later to his grandson, Herbert F. Sr. In 1959, the brewery was closed, and the reason given as the major factor in this decision was that a 36 cents per case State Tax had been instituted. At that time, it was the oldest Cleveland brewery and one of the longest surviving family-owned breweries in America.

He is buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 25.

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AUSTIN LLOYD  1885-1989

He was among, if not the oldest, Ohio State Alumni when he died. When he was a college student, he was a member of the Tuba Section of the Marching Band; and was the one who dotted the "I" when they formed the words "OHIO STATE". When he reached the age of 100 years, he was invited back to the football field on campus to once again dot the "I". This he did, tuba and all.

He died at the age of 103 and is buried in Riverside Cemetery next to his wife who preceded him in death at her age of 99. They are buried in Section 28.

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ROBERT LOCKWOOD, JR. 1915 - 2006

Robert Lockwood, Jr., Blues icon and Cleveland legend.

He was a prominent, very popular, and legendary Blues musician. He was born in Arkansas and grew up listening and learning the southern style blues, and later moved to Cleveland. As a youngster he first learned to play the guitar from Robert Johnson who was a legend in the field. The Jr. in his name refers to his desire to always honor the great Robert Johnson for having been such an inspiration and mentor in his childhood. Thus he referred to himself as Robert Lockwood, Jr., or Robert Jr. Lockwood. His personal music style started with the Mississippi Delta sound and later developed into jump blues, jazz, and funk. His rhythmic and personal style became an integral part of his being, and was appealing and mesmerizing to his devoted listeners. He spoke through his music, portraying life as he witnessed its real-life dramas unfold. His blues sound mirrored life's ups and downs, appealing to all. His career spanned 76 years starting at age 15, continuing until three weeks before his death. This diversified blues virtuoso was an icon on Cleveland's music scene for many decades, appearing at several local establishments, Blues concerts and festivals. He performed throughout the U.S., Japan and Europe, including blues festivals in England and Finland. In Cleveland he was a popular musician at the Fat Fish Blue restaurant where he and his band, the "Robert Lockwood Jr. All-Stars", played to grateful audiences. The band members respected his professionalism and paternal mentoring. He received honorary docorates from Case Western Reserve and Cleveland State Universities. Among other honors were those received from the National Heritage Fellowship, two National Blues Music Awards from the Blues Foundation, and four W.C. Handy Awards. He was nominated for a Grammy Award for two albums, and he was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame. He was recognized by having a street named in his honor on the east bank of the Flats in 1998. An overflow crowd of family, friends, and fans attended his funeral service in the historic Old Stone Church on Public Square. A close friend, Cleveland Councilman Jay Westbrook, stated in an interview that Robert Lockwood Jr. "was one of the most truthful, honest, and loving people you could ever know". His first wife Annie died in 1997, they had nine children. He later married his second wife Mary who survives. He is buried next to Annie in Riverside Cemetery in Section 25.

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NICHOLAS MEYER  1809-1884

He came to Cleveland from Bavaria in 1834 and was a stone mason. His farm was in the Cuyahoga Valley on Jennings Road, east of Titus Brainard's farm where the new Steel Yard Commons is located.

He was heavily involved in real estate transactions on the South Side of the City. He had a high reputation for integrity and had brilliant business sense.

He was married and the father of 12 children.

He was a Founding Trustee of Riverside Cemetery and is buried in Section 26.

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JOHN AND RUBY MILLER

The Miller monument.

They were the founders of the very well-known enduring and loved Miller's Restaurant in Lakewood.  It was a very popular restaurant where West Siders went to enjoy a most special and gracious dinner in its unique early 20th century atmosphere. 

They are buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 5.

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OMAR EUGENE MUELLER  1880-1946

He was born in Cleveland and the son of Ernst W. and Agathe Leick Mueller. 

He was educated at University School and attended Harvard and Washington Universities. He was U.S. Consul in Bahia, Brazil from 1911-1914.

The Cleveland Home Brewing Co. was founded in 1907 by his father. In 1932, he succeeded his founding father as President of the Cleveland Home Brewing Co. where he remained from 1932-1946.

He was recognized as a nationally ranked tournament bridge player. The Plain Dealer eulogized him as a "man of unusual attainments".

He married Elsa Weideman in 1914 and they had four children: Ernst W., Erna L. Berry, Jay C., and Werner D. A son, Omar John, died at the age of six.

He is buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 39.

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GEORGE V. MUTH  1834-1899

He was the founder of the Muth Brewing Co. When his company was sold in the 1890's it was called the Star Brewing Co. 

He is buried in Riverside Cemetery in Section 23.

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