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  • Writer's pictureSandvick Architects

Carl B. Stokes Ohio Historical Marker Unveiling Ceremony

Photo by: Dave Gapinski | News 5 Cleveland.

If you're in the Cleveland area, have you seen the new Civil Rights Trail historical marker honoring Carl B. Stokes that is now outside of Cleveland City Hall?? The unveiling ceremony took place on Wednesday, June 8, 2022.

Carl B. Stokes was the 51st Mayor of Cleveland and the city's first Black mayor, making him the first Black mayor of a major American city.

The unveiling ceremony welcomed opening remarks by the Cleveland Restoration Society, Justin Bibb - the Mayor of Cleveland, Cordell Stokes - the son of Carl Stokes, R.L. "Bob" Redner III - a community activist, Rick Taft - the son of Seth Taft, closing remarks from The Ohio History Connection. An actor, Peter Lawson Jones, also presented a dramatization of Carl Stokes during the ceremony.

The Carl B. Stokes marker is one of many historical markers that will be placed throughout Cleveland to honor significant trailblazers and locations that played a role in our city's civil rights movement.

Photo by: Sandvick Architects, Inc.

The following is an excerpt from the unveiling ceremony brochure:

"The Cleveland Restoration Society (CRS) is leading a community effort to create an African American Civil Rights Trail in Cleveland (the Trail), the first of its kind in a nothern city.
The Trail will consist of 10 sites in Cleveland associated with the Modern Civil Rights Movement (1954-1964) and the Second Revolution (1964-1976). Each site will be marked by an Ohio Historical Marker and supported by a website with in-depth content about the sites of the Trail, written by four civil rights scholars, that discusses the significance of the site and how they connect to civil rights and social justice matters today, including the Black Lives Matter movement.
Since February 2021, after a selection process that considered input from public, scholars, and community leaders, CRS has announced six sites selected for the Trail, and, now a seventh at Cleveland City Hall, in honor of the city's 51st Mayor, Carl Burton Stokes: Cory United Methodist Church, Glenville High School, The Hough Uprising, The Pegg House and Ludlow Community Association, Greater Abyssinia Baptist Church, Olivet Instiutional Baptist Church."

Photos by: Sandvick Architects, Inc.

The African American Civil Rights Trail is supported through a grant from the African American Civil Rights grant program as administered by the National Park Service, Department of Interior. Additional support is provided by sponsors and anonymous donors. Sandvick Architects is proud to have pledged $10,000 to sponsor a marker on the African American Civil Rights Trail.

To watch a few short video clips of the Carl B. Stokes unveiling ceremony, follow the Sandvick Architect Instagram account (@sandvickarchitectsinc).

The African American Civil Rights Trail Sponsors:

You can learn more about Cleveland's African American Civil Rights Trail by visiting their new website at

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