The History and Development of Ridgewood
Ridgewood is a residential area, measuring approximately 2.5 square miles and comprised of 290 houses located less than 2 miles from downtown Canton. The original frame farmhouse at 140 19th Street NW was built by noted Canton educator John Lehman; it was the only property constructed on the land prior to a residential development project begun in 1919. During the period between 1919 and 1930 one hundred and eighty-five homes were constructed by the Leonard Development Agency (Mr. George A. Leonard founded the Leonard Insurance Agency that still exists today. His wife, Mrs. Louise Leonard, suggested the name Ridgewood after visiting a new allotment in Springfield, Ohio).
The designs and features in each of the homes were highly individual and telling of both the architects’ and owners’ interests. To reproduce such homes today would be cost prohibitive due to the expense of labor and materials. As a result of the tireless work of a group of dedicated residents, efforts to attain classification on the National Register of Historic Places began in 1977 and the honor was achieved in 1983. Today the Historic Ridgewood Association continues in its efforts to preserve and restore these valuable properties and the enduring sense of place that they embody.