Looking back... Clague Monument reaches milestone this month
How many times did you go to Clague Park this year? Maybe your family enjoyed the swimming pool, played little league baseball, or enjoyed the playground equipment. Maybe you enjoyed the super 4th of July Fireworks presented by the City of Westlake. Why is the park known today as Clague Memorial Park?
Robert Clague and family originally came to Dover Township (now known as Westlake, Bay Village, and part of North Olmsted) around 1835. They purchased a 78 acre parcel of land and built the Clague Home in 1876 which stands today at 1371 Clague Road. The Clagues were farmers that became very successful selling apples, berries, and various fruits far and wide. They were also known for helping others, and able to lend money when necessary.
The Monument across the street from the Clague Home contains the following inscription that helps tell the story: “Forty years ago Walter Clague desired to donate his property for a park when the opportune time came. This desire was realized on Sat. Oct. 9, 1926, when Dover Village accepted the 78 acres on Clague Road for park purposes, which park to be called the Clague Memorial Park, both name and park for all time.”
October 12, 1929 was a very memorable day for the citizens of Dover as well as future generations. On this day, many of the townspeople gathered at the Clague farm for the formal dedication of the farm as a public park. The large granite monument was dedicated opposite the home. Walter's sister, Miss Sophronia Clague, said, ”We hope that the park will be a place where the people of Dover can relax both mentally and physically with sufficient space to play and a place that will eventually become a natural beauty spot in Dover.”
Although the Clague family consisted of nine children, the monument only lists eight. Victoria Clague was still living at the time of the monument dedication, yet her name was left off because she did not support the donation. In October 2009, The Westlake Historical Society placed a wreath to mark the 80th anniversary of the Clague Memorial Park Monument.
To learn more about the Clague family and Westlake history, visit www.westlakeohiohistory.org or call 440-471-4090.