The imposing house at 16804 West
Park Avenue has been owned by Edwin and Gisela Moore since 1970.
It is undoubtedly one of the most unique residences in West
Park. When the couple first drove through the West Park
neighborhood years ago, looking for a home in which to raise
their family, Ed was initially put off by the nontraditional
style of the house. On a subsequent outing, however, there was
an "open house" sign posted and they were curious to view the
Perhaps there was something vaguely
familiar about the architecture, reminiscent of Gisela's native
Germany, that appealed to the young couple. Ed, who grew up in
Lakewood, and Gisela had met in Fulda, Germany, and were married
there in 1966. They appreciated the home's handcrafted sandstone
exterior and living room fireplace, its windows that filled the
rooms with natural light, and the large tree-shaded yard for
their future children.
Over the years, the Moores had
become accustomed to passersby stopping to comment about their
distinctive home, but an unexpected knock on their door in 2005
was especially welcome. It was George A. Kachelein Jr., visiting
Cleveland from Lapel, Indiana, who greeted the Moores with,
"Hello. My grandfather built this house." George and family
members in the car were immediately invited inside to see their
ancestor's home after 63 years.
was referring to his grandfather, Nicholas Kachelein (ne้
Kœhelein), who emigrated
from Germany about 1884 with his wife Margaret Knobloch
Kachelein. They originally lived on Cleveland's East
Side and raised eight children. Nicholas' two brothers also
lived nearby. It appears nearly all the Kachelein men worked in
the construction trades. Nicholas, a bricklayer, was among those
employed in the paving of Lorain Avenue in the early twentieth
Cuyahoga County real estate deeds
record Herman B. Nolze transferring a substantial parcel of land
on West Park Avenue to Nick and Margaret Kachelein in February
1914. Oral history states that Nicholas hauled sandstone from
Berea, in a horse-drawn wagon, to the site where he built his
new family home.
walls of the house are 14 inches thick, consisting of the outer
sandstone construction and an inner wall of brick finished with
plaster. The house has three upstairs bedrooms off a spacious
hall, an open front porch, plus extraordinary features built by
Nicholas, including an attached garage and a wine/fruit cellar.
Betty Popadak Gdovin, grandaughter
of Nicholas and Margaret, was too young to remember her
grandfather, who died in 1930 at age 74. She does, however,
recall visiting her grandmother Margaret, who remained in the
home with two of her adult children for eleven years. Betty has
fond memories of a piano in the front vestibule (which no one
played). There was a chicken coop, vegetable garden, and a
strawberry patch (off-limits to the kids!) in the back yard. The
six Kachelein grandchildren played tag in the side yard and
enjoyed the swing on the ivy-covered front porch. The house was
sold by Margaret's estate in 1942, following her passing at 85
years of age.
Current owners Gisela and Ed Moore
raised three children in the now 100-year-old "Castle House."
For more than forty years their dining room has been the scene
of traditional German holiday celebrations and happy gatherings
of family and friends. And, once again, grandchildren play in
the beautifully landscaped yard.
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