Over Labor Day weekend in 2015, my dad’s cousin and I met in Cleveland to do some in-person digging into our family tree. We planned to drive through the old ‘hoods to find the family homes, find as many headstones as we could, spend some time at the Cleveland History Center to take a gander through old documents… and, of course, to take gobs and gobs of pictures!

Day four (our last day before I left for home) brought Ginny and I to one of my grandfather’s favorite childhood haunts: Squaw Rock at South Chagrin Reservation.

Grandpa had fond memories of hiking and picnicking here…
The fascinating story behind Squaw Rock. Grandpa said that often times other artists would paint the “squaw” in various risque outfits… but mostly he talked about picnicking here. I’m not sure when or who with, though…
This was the hottest day of our trip, but the views were breathtaking!
Squaw Rock

Despite the heat, Ginny and I trekked onward to another of my grandfather’s favorite childhood haunts, Squire’s Castle. The story he told me varies drastically from the truth; it makes me wonder how old he was when he visited or if he and his friends made up a backstory…

A European strikes it rich in America, but his wife hates it and goes crazy while they live there. They abandon the castle and move back to Europe.

Grandpa had fond memories of this place. Though the “legend” he remembered about the castle was much different than the truth… He must’ve been younger when he visited this place…
Squire’s Castle
Squire’s Castle
The “Castle” as it was…
The “Castle” Today…

We ended our day at the James A. Garfield National Historic Site. We had no idea President Garfield was such a renaissance man and all around stand up guy!

Bust of Garfield. Did you know he was a preacher, lawyer, teacher, soldier, and politician?
Did you know he was the only president to have been former preacher?
He had his mother and father-in-law living with him before his death, along with his wife and seven children.
Front of the Garfield House, with the famous front porch. Did you know he was the first president to have a mother living during his inauguration and time in the White House?
Mrs. Garfield’s addition to the house, the Memorial Library. Her’s was the first of many Presidential Libraries.