Shaker Historical Society


    Ford M. Clapp and John Williams, his chauffeur

    Staff members are busy researching  the history of local domestic help in preparation for our next exhibit ABOVE STAIRS: Domestic Service in Shaker Heights. Discoveries include this little gem in the Ohio Motorist 1916, which introduced Ford M. Clapp as a new member of the Cleveland Club! He lived just down the street from the Myers family who built their home at 16740 South Park Boulevard.



    Residents of the Van Sweringens' new development of Shaker Village (like the Myers family, the Fullers, or Ford Clapp and his family) needed a car to reach their "South Boulevard" Cleveland Heights Village residences -- according to the 1910 census! The Van Sweringens didn't fully incorporate Shaker Village until 1912, so new residences along South Park, for example, were recorded in Cleveland Heights.
    Ford Clapp must have had a car to go from his home at 3252 South Park Blvd to his Ohio Varnish Company downtown, as this predated construction of the Shaker Rapid. Clapp also had a chauffeur named John H. Williams (not the composer), a 34-year-old widower from Maryland. This census record also shows that a cook and a maid worked at the Clapp family residence. Want to learn more about this history of Shaker Heights and its residents? Come to the Shaker Historical Museum's programs and exhibits to discover more about what really happened here!


    Above Stairs: Domestic Service in Shaker Heights opens March 24, 2017.