The Ludlow Community Association took its name from the neighborhood school — Ludlow Elementary School, at Ludlow and Southington Roads in Shaker Heights, shown as a red box on the map. Many of the homes in the school’s area are in the city of Cleveland. This arrangement dates back to 1912, when Shaker Heights was incorporated, with parts of Cleveland near what is now Shaker Square included in the Shaker Heights City School District.
In 1987, in a major reorganization, Shaker Heights closed several elementary schools, including Ludlow. The school building is now leased to PEP, Positive Education Program.
The Ludlow Community Association (LCA) was established by its residents in 1957 with the purpose of creating and maintaining a community that encourages and supports a racially integrated community.
For more than 50 years:
- It has presented public discussions, forums, panels, lectures and published materials for the education of the general public concerning community life in multi-racial neighborhoods.
- It has actively engaged in maintaining high physical standards of property and homes in the community.
- It has successfully addressed issues of quality integrated education, abandonment of the housing market by real estate agents and companies, varying levels of disinvestment by financial institutions, and safety and security of person and property.
The history of the Ludlow community and its Association has exemplified the challenges of open and integrated housing in the United States.
On a national basis, Ludlow has been cited as a major example of successful inter-racial living. A Reader’s Digest article in 1968 referred to Ludlow as a “Lesson in Integration.” In his book, Good Neighborhood, The Challenge of Open Housing, Morris Milgram of Partners in Housing, describes the role the Association played in forming The Ludlow Company to provide secondary mortgage financing and its role in establishing the Housing Office of the City of Shaker Heights to encourage white families to move into integrated areas.
The LCA has fully succeeded in creating and maintaining a unique integrated and diverse community in which residents truly enjoy one another’s company and perspectives.
At our 50th Anniversary in 2007 a large number of returning residents who had grown up in Ludlow bemoaned their inability to ever find another community with the same atmosphere in these United States.
Today, the LCA continues on the path of integration, but this time across generations.
We are working to build a community in which young and old learn from one another, where it is a pleasure to raise children, and where excellent local services make retirement easy.
Our goals for this year are:
- Establish a block club in most streets in our neighborhood, both for safety and for social purposes
- Establish better links with our Cleveland neighbors outside of Ludlow
- Catalog all youth programs in the area
- Consider the best way we can help one another and help to develop character in our youth
- Begin the process of establishing a “Ludlow village” — a community with fully available services for all
Please consider joining us on this quest to maintain a neighborhood where you will find every kind of race, ethnic background and religion, and where we will plan together for our future! Learn more about joining.
For more on the Ludlow neighborhood, we suggest these links:
- Ludlow Community Association in the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History
- Ludlow images at the Cleveland Memory Project