George H. Smith

(1848-1924) and John Eisenmann (1851-1924). Smith is best known as the

designer of  the Old Arcade & prominent Euclid Avenue Mansions. He appeared on the Cleveland scene in 1882 with the design for Samuel Andrews’ Victorian Gothic baronial mansion (see ANDREWS’S FOLLY). He immediately thereafter designed the Euclid Avenue mansion (1884) of Charles F. Brush, inventor of the first commercial electrical arc light and one of the founders of America’s electrical industry. Both houses already showed a complete confidence in handling European styles. In 1890 Smith’s Hickox Building and the Arcade were both completed. From the similarities in the facade composition of the two buildings, it is assumed Smith’s responsibility in the Arcade was designing the Superior and Euclid Avenue office buildings, and that Eisenmann planned the structural engineering for the interior. — ECH 


“The development of skeletal structure and the interior light court reached a climax in Cleveland with the construction of the ARCADE,” says Johannesen. “Opened in 1890, the Arcade is an architectural landmark that has remained without peer for more than 100 years. Combining features of the light court and a commercial shopping street. . . the 300’ long iron-and-glass arcade of 5 stories is surrounded by railed balconies and connects two 9-story office buildings designed in the Romanesque style. . . The central well of the Arcade, with its dramatic open space and natural light, is the most impressive interior in the city, and its renown is international.”



Arcade-Superior, Bill Eberhard