On the edge of Downtown Cleveland in a small park is a simple monument to one of the City’s favorite sons.
Jesse Owens was born in Oakville, Alabama but moved with his family to Cleveland when he was nine years old. He attended East Technical High School and tied the accepted world record in the 100 yard dash when he was a senior. This let to his attendance of The Ohio State University where he continued excel and rise to international prominence. In the 1935 Big Ten Championship, he set three world records and tied a fourth, all in about 45 minutes! In 1936 he participated in the Olympics in Nazi Germany and won 4 gold metals with Adolf Hitler looking on. This essentially discredited Hitler’s ‘master race’ theory on his home turf.
This memorial was sculpted by William McVey and funded through the Gund Foundation. It was installed in 1982 and rests within Fort Washington Park on the north edge of Downtown Cleveland.
If You Go:
Fort Washington Park is within close walking distance of Cleveland’s Civic Core, Public Square, Lakefront, and Warehouse District. There are plenty of cultural attractions, restaurants, and other amenities within close walking distance.