This Crystallized Version of the Skyline from 1969 is Your New Favorite Cleveland Tattoo Inspiration


  • Courtesy of Cleveland Digital Library

The Cleveland Digital Public Library database is one of the most fascinating resources available to the community. With assistance from CPL librarians, the Digital Public Library offers individuals, institutions, and families help with digitizing and preserving and showing-off their collections. The idea is to help keep and share the history of Cleveland, North East Ohio, and beyond.

CDPL recently scanned and uploaded a 1969 proposal for "The Great Lakes Getaway," a massive community development plan for E. 9th Street and Erieside Avenue (where the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was later built in 1983). The proposal was meant to highlight Cleveland's connection to Lake Erie, building something comparable to San Francisco's "Fisherman's Wharf."

Scanning through the failed regional leisure attraction proposal nearly 50 years later offers an entertaining look at the high expectations the city once had for its future, but the most eye-catching aspect of the proposal was a minimalist, line-heavy, crystalized interpretation of the Cleveland skyline.

Given the penchant people have for tattoos of Ohio outlines, the skyline, the guardians, *groans* Chief Wahoo and Melt grilled cheese sandwich, finding a unique way to celebrate the Land that we love without getting the same tattoo half the damn city already has can be challenging.

However, if there's something gained from reading 85 pages of a failed city expansion proposal from five decades ago, it's this super rad crystalized version of Cleveland. Crystal/geometric shapes, minimalism and expert line work have all become huge trends in the tattoo world, so this historic vision will be a perfect fit to pay homage to our beautiful city.

The CDPL scanners are available anytime during regular library hours at the Digital Hub. Citizens can capture and share scans of pictures, documents and prints with family and friends. Library visitors are also welcome to work with a librarian to use special high resolution scanning equipment Tuesday and Thursday from noon to 6 p.m., or by appointment.

You can even access the CDPL's Digital Gallery online by clicking here. For more information on the Cleveland Digital Public Library click here, or visit them on the Main Library's 3rd Floor at 325 Superior Ave.

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