Saturday, April 19, 2014
The City of Willowick: A Brief History

In 1796, a treaty was established with the Iroquois substantiating the Connecticut Land Company's title to the Western Reserve east of the Cuyahoga River. In 1804, the area now know today as Willowick was incorporated into a new county (Geauga), which included all of Portage, Ashtabula and Lake Counties. In 1810, the Willowick area and all of Lake County west of Mentor became part of Cuyahoga County. It wasn't until 1840 that Lake County was created out of portions of Geauga and Cuyahoga Counties, at which time Willowick transferred from Cuyahoga County to the new Lake County.

In 1921, the first area of mass home construction in the City was started and was advertised as Vinewood Beach. This area included Glen Aden Drive, Parkland Drive, West Lake Drive, Glenwood Drive and Lakeland Drive. The City's greatest period of growth occurred from 1946 to 1959.

In 1950, Willowick celebrated its 25th Anniversary as a Village (population 3,677). At that time, the City purchased the old Nike site which then became Manry Park. In 1954, Shoregate Shopping Center opened on the site of a former golf course. And, in 1957, the Ohio Secretary of State officially declared Willowick a city.

By 1962, Willowick's population had grown to 21,237 people. At the time the current Community Center was built in 1970 Willowick's population was 17,834. In 1976, the Willowick City Hall complex at 30435 Lakeshore Boulevard was built at a cost of $2 million. In 1997, Willowick celebrated its 40th anniversary as a chartered city, and in 2002, the City boasted at population of 14,361.

For a more detailed history of the City of Willowick and to view historic photographs visit: