Though I often consult my favorite Web site Roadside America, it’s few and far between that I find new entries for Cleveland. So you can imagine my surprise when I stumbled upon two new posts pertaining to the Birthplace of Superman.
Though I knew that the creator’s of the Superman Comic Book were from Cleveland, I definitely never took the time to research them.
I quickly jotted down the addresses of the comics co-creators, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, as I knew that I would soon set off to Cleveland’s East side Glenville neighborhood to explore. Finally, after three agonizingly long days… last Saturday provided me with an opportunity to set out on this 20 minute journey.
Though I was not at all surprised to find myself driving through urban decay, I admit that I was caught off guard when my GPS stopped me in front of a lovely house nestled between a series of dilapidated homes. Furthermore, I was shocked to see the Jerry Seigel Superman home owners were sitting porch side… I hadn’t quite anticipated this scenario, though I rarely do think when my body is pulsating with adrenaline due to the anticipation of a new discovery…
“Would you mind if I took photos of your home,” I said out my car window.
“Sure thing” said the lovely little home owner… “Come on out of the car, I’ll give you a tour of the house” She said.
“Is this really happening.” I thought to myself… There was absolutely no way I could pass up this opportunity….
Home owner Hattie and her daughter proceeded to take me on a tour of the home which was Superman inspired inside and out. The exterior porch windows were adorn with posters, the living room and dining room had comic book memorabilia strewn about, but it was the upstairs that simply blew me away… why upstairs was a shrine…. An entire room dedicated to Superman Memorabilia. From comic books, to videos, T-shifts and dolls, nearly every inch of the upstairs room was lined with Superman collectibles
As if getting an insiders look into this home was not amazing enough, Hattie went on to explain how her family ended up in the home. Turns out that when the family purchased the home 1983, there was no known historic significance. It was actually several years later before the family learned of the legacy.
Hattie then went on to explain how the home got a well-needed renovation and shiny exterior plaques. Turns out it was all due to the work of Brad Meltzer, a best selling author researching the Comic Book co-creators. When Metlzer showed up to Siegel’s home, he was shocked to see that the city of Cleveland had done nothing to honor the Superman legacy. Meltzer single-handedly spearhead an initiative to get proper historic significance to the Siegel home, and also the Amor St. property which formally housed the apartment of Shuster.
Meltzer’s work led to the foundation of the Siegel & Shuster Society, a non-profit organization which works to dedicate and commemorate the significance of the creation of Superman in Cleveland.
What an absolutely amazing experience… Thank you Brad Meltzer for restoring a little piece of Cleveland history… and to you Hattie.. I can’t thank you enough for your generosity to welcome me into your home.
Want to learn more……
Click HERE to read about Meltzer’s initiative in honoring the legacy of these men.
Click HERE to read “Where Superman was Born” an article written by a man named Seth Kushner. Though I stumbled upon this article after finishing this blog post, I still learned two things; 1. Kushner is my writing Soul Mate… Who are you Seth Kushner of Trip City… (Our experiences and writing styles are eerily similar) 2. The ability to explore the interior of this home may not be as difficult as I had imagined….