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Cleveland in Cuyahoga County, Ohio — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Andrew J. Rickoff / Charles Edward Adams

 
 
The Andrew J. Rickoff side of the marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, June 22, 2019
1. The Andrew J. Rickoff side of the marker
Inscription.  
Andrew J. Rickoff, Educator, Administrator, Innovator. The Cleveland Public School Board recognized one of its first superintendents by naming one of its elementary schools in his honor. Andrew Jackson Rickoff (1824-1899) was born in New Hope, New Jersey. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Woodward College in Cincinnati and a master’s degree from Ohio University. Prior to moving to Cleveland he served as the superintendent of schools in Portsmouth and Cincinnati Ohio. He became superintendent of schools in Yonkers, New York after his term in Cleveland.

Rickoff radically transformed the structure of the public school system in Cleveland while he served as superintendent for 15 years beginning in 1867. He created districts within the city and each was assigned its own administrative principals to manage them. When he began as superintendent the schools were segregated by gender and the classes were comprised of students of mixed ages and grades all in one classroom. The curriculum was not tailored to meet the individual educational needs by age and development.

During his tenure he created coed schools thus eliminating
The Charles Edward Adams side of the marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, June 22, 2019
2. The Charles Edward Adams side of the marker
single gender schools in Cleveland. Rickoff formed three school divisions: primary, grammar and high school. Classes were then structured by grade and age appropriate instruction. He employed women as principals and founded the Cleveland City Normal School to train teachers. His wife Rebecca Davis Rickoff, also a highly regarded educator, worked with him to transform educational training provided to both teachers and students. He was the author of numerous reading and math textbooks. The Rickoff’s daughter, Bertha M. Rickoff was also a teacher in the Cleveland Public Schools. Rickoff was laid to rest at Lakeview Cemetery in Cleveland in 1899 after residing in Berkley, California.

The Andrew J. Rickoff School was first opened in 1917 and rebuilt in 1964. In 2002 the building was demolished to make way for a new school building that was built in 2005.

Charles Edward Adams, Educator, Scientist, Entrepreneur, Civic Volunteer, Horticulturist. Lifelong Mt. Pleasant resident Charles Edward Adams affectionately known to his family and friends as “Billy” was born January 3, 1947 to Clarence and Marjorie Avery Adams. He was born with a rare disease called Osteogenesis Imperfecta (commonly called Brittle Bone disease) which caused most of his young life to be spent at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital. This disease may have set limitations on
Andrew J. Rickoff / Charles Edward Adams Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, June 22, 2019
3. Andrew J. Rickoff / Charles Edward Adams Marker
Adams’ physical activity, yet nothing stood in the way of him excelling academically or accomplishing his goals. Charles Edward Adams passed on October 2, 2005 and left a legacy for the residents of Mount Pleasant and the City of Cleveland with his many works of art throughout the city.

Adams was the founder of The Outside In, a landscape architectural firm that provided specialized, scientific designs for interior and exterior commercial areas. He developed his business to be on the cutting edge and became the authority within the field of horticulture. Outside In was one of a small group of African American owned landscape architect firms in the United States and worked with several major projects in Greater Cleveland such as: Ronald McDonald House, Progressive Field, Cleveland Browns Stadium, The Euclid Corridor Project, Settler’s Landing, Cancer Survivor’s Plaza, Arbor Park, Bearings Inc., and The Lakefront Redevelopment Planning Project. For the Kinsman Road Revitalization Project in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood that he lived in, he created a special Afrocentric work. The sidewalks are decorated with mud cloth brickwork design that stands for “Brave Warrior Belts.” He believed that it would give the community inspiration in its quest for improvements and revitalization.

Adams was a product of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District attending
Andrew J. Rickoff School image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, June 22, 2019
4. Andrew J. Rickoff School
This is the third building at this site, finished in 2005. The first Andres J. Rickoff School opened in 1917.
Sunbeam School for Crippled Children and later being one of the first African American students to attend South High School. As a result he was forced to deal with many prejudices while attending the school, but was able to prevail as an honor student and a National Merit Scholar.

Adams attended Alma College in Alma, Michigan where he received a full scholarship and earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1970. He later attended Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) and earned a Master of School Administration from The Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences in 1976. In that same year, he became the first African American with a Master’s degree to work as an Assistant Clinical Professor at CWRU’s esteemed Medical and Dental Schools. Adams had a profound interest in public health which helped him to research and document many of his findings in over 60 publications on various topics that included: sickle cell anemia, genetics and other topics relevant to the community.
 
Location. 41° 27.853′ N, 81° 34.796′ W. Marker is in Cleveland, Ohio, in Cuyahoga County. Marker is at the intersection of Kinsman Road (U.S. 422) and East 146th Street, on the right when traveling east on Kinsman Road. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 3500 E 147th St, Cleveland OH 44120, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured
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as the crow flies. Jim Brown / Carl Burton Stokes (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Van Sweringen Demonstration House (approx. 0.7 miles away); a different marker also named Van Sweringen Demonstration House (approx. 0.7 miles away); a different marker also named Van Sweringen Demonstration House (approx. ¾ mile away); a different marker also named Van Sweringen Demonstration House (approx. ¾ mile away); Warrensville West Cemetery (approx. 0.8 miles away); This Tablet Marks the Final Resting Place of the Shakers of the North Union Society (approx. 0.8 miles away); Shaker Gate Posts (approx. 1.4 miles away).
 
Regarding Andrew J. Rickoff / Charles Edward Adams. On the Andrew J. Rickoff side of the marker there are seven photographs. 1 is a portrait of Andres J. Rickoff. 2 and 3 are of students in classrooms circa 1942. 4 and 5 are of students circa 1965. 6 and 7 are 2002 photos of the groundbreaking for the current school building.

On the Charles E. Adams side of the marker there are five photographs. 1 is a portrait of the subject. 2 shows the subject “wearing mud cloth designs that inspired some of his designs.” 3 is his 1966 high school graduation portrait. 4 is a photo of “Charles Adams 6 months old at Cleveland Festival circa 1947.” 5 is captioned “Progressive
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Field Project.”

Both sides cite the sources of the images used and show undated copyright notices for marker design and content to Hall Creative Productions and Graphixsphere Design Studio.
 

More. Search the internet for Andrew J. Rickoff / Charles Edward Adams.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 23, 2019. This page originally submitted on July 23, 2019, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 64 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on July 23, 2019, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.
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