Puritas Springs Park, Cleveland, Ohio
This article was written by Russell Allon Hehr and appears in The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History.
In 1898, the first park on the west side of the city opened. Puritas Springs Park, overlooking the Rocky River valley, stood astride a deep ravine from which flowed the artesian well that gave the park its name. Puritas Springs was also a “trolley park,” served by the Cleveland and Southwestern interurban. Owner and manager John E. Gooding took his cue from Euclid Beach and offered free grounds admission. (Gooding, who lived with his family in a house on the park grounds, is credited with introducing the first horse-drawn and steam-powered carousels in Ohio. When [Cleveland’s] Luna Park closed in 1929, Gooding acquired its famous carousel of 72 hand-carved steeds and installed it at Puritas Springs.)While the carousel, dance hall, and roller rink were popular, the truly outstanding attraction was the Cyclone roller coaster. Careening in and out of the ravine, the Cyclone was higher and faster than any other coaster in the Cleveland area.
Puritas Springs drew west-siders for years. Still, its magnetism also began to fade after the war. In 1946, a fire destroyed the dance hall. In 1958, another fire forced the park to close. A residential neighborhood was developed on the Puritas Ave. site