Originally part of Newburgh Township and annexed to Cleveland in 1913, the Woodland Hills neighborhood developed principally between 1900 and 1930. During these decades, the Buckeye Road area attracted the largest Hungarian population outside of Hungary and became known as Cleveland's "Little Hungary."
The 116-acre Woodland Hills Park (now Luke Easter Park) was acquired by the City's Board of Park Commissioners in 1900 as part of a general plan for park development approved in 1894. A principal feature of this plan was the development of a large park on the outskirts of the City in each of seven geographic districts.
In 1927, St. Luke's Hospital moved from East 66th and Carnegie to its present location at East 116th and Shaker Boulevard. Following the Depression, the hospital embarked on a periodic program of expansion that continued until the early 1980's. In 1929, Benedictine monks were given charge of the St. Benedict Parish on East Boulevard (now Martin Luther King Boulevard). In the same year, Benedictine High School, which had been established in 1927, moved to the quarters of the old Notre Dane orphanage at 10510 Buckeye. A new high school building was constructed in 1940 and a new abbey was constructed in 1952.
During the 1960's and 1970's, racial and economic change, accompanied by increasing property repair needs in the Buckeye-Woodland neighborhood, resulted in the establishment of grass-roots organizations committed to stabilizing the neighborhood. The Buckeye-Woodland Community Congress and Bank on Buckeye were among the most active and innovative neighborhood organizations operating in Cleveland during the 1970's and early 1980's.
Although neighborhood conditions remain depressed, a recent upturn in storefront renovation activity and the development of a 120,000-square foot shopping center near East 116th and Buckeye are causes for renewed optimism.
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