Remembering those who served: Tri-C’s Crile Archives honors the area’s veterans and military history
November 09, 2016
Every day, thousands of students, employees and faculty traverse the expansive corridors of Cuyahoga Community College’s Western Campus, and many are only vaguely aware of the site’s history.
Those walkways and classrooms are built atop the same land once occupied by one of the most important military installations in the Midwest: Crile Military Hospital. Dedicated on Easter Sunday 1944, the facility provided medical care for U.S. soldiers and housed several hundred German prisoners of war during World War II.
Later, it would provide medical care for veterans and serve as a Nike anti-aircraft missile site during the Cold War.
Originally built as a temporary wartime hospital, Crile remained an active military facility for 20 years, before beginning a new life as Tri-C’s Western Campus in 1966.
The College utilized Crile’s original buildings until the current Western Campus complex was constructed in 1975. Today, the College’s primary link to its past is housed in the Crile Archive Center for History Education, operated by Dr. James Banks. The Crile Archives are dedicated to preserving the legacy of local veterans, and Northeast Ohio’s military contributions in both wartime and peacetime.
As part of its “My Cleveland” series, Cleveland.com recently spoke with Banks about his history, and the history of the Crile Archives.