Brecksville was founded in 1811, four years after several men — including Colonel John Breck — purchased the surrounding area. After the land was surveyed, Seth Payne, one of the surveyors, brought his family and settled in the area in June 1811, and he was soon followed by many other families. Although Colonel Breck never lived in Brecksville, his three sons did, and members of his family continued to live in Brecksville until 1934, when his great-grandson Dr. Theodore Breck died. A comprehensive early historical account of Brecksville was written by William R. Coates and published by The American Historical Society in 1924.
Brecksville was incorporated as a village in 1921, and it gained the status of city in 1960.
Brecksville is located at 41°18′36″N 81°37′44″W (41.309904, -81.628894).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 19.68 square miles (50.97 km2), of which 19.57 square miles (50.69 km2) is land and 0.11 square miles (0.28 km2) is water. Brecksville's eastern border is traversed by the Cuyahoga River and borders Sagamore Hills Township and Boston Township, southern border Richfield Township (all three townships in Summit County), western border Broadview Heights and northern border Independence.
Brecksville is defined by its scenic wooded bluffs and ravines which are a result of the geological confluence of the Glaciated Allegheny Plateau and the Great Lakes Basin. Many neighborhoods are adjacent to the Brecksville Reservation of the Cleveland Metroparks and the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, one of the most visited National Parks in the country. The Brecksville Reservation consists of 2,500 acres.
Along with the Cleveland Metroparks and Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Brecksville has a Human Resources and Community Center.
As of July 1, 2015, the per capita income for a household in the city was $126,033 and the per capita income for an average family of three was $151,239. The median household income is $97,013 and the average household income is $127,229. Of the city's population over the age of 25, 78% hold an associate degree or higher, 51% hold a bachelor's degree or higher, and 23% hold a Graduate Degree.
As of the census of 2010, there were 13,656 people, 5,349 households, and 3,883 families residing in the city. The population density was 697.8 inhabitants per square mile (269.4/km2). There were 5,623 housing units at an average density of 287.3 per square mile (110.9/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 93.3% White, 1.7% African American, 0.1% Native American, 3.4% Asian, 0.3% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.4% of the population.
There were 5,349 households of which 30.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.9% were married couples living together, 6.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 2.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 27.4% were non-families. 24.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.00.
The median age in the city was 47.4 years. 22.8% of residents were under the age of 18; 5.3% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 18.1% were from 25 to 44; 36.2% were from 45 to 64; and 17.8% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.9% male and 50.1% female.
As of the census of 2000, the median income for a household in the city was $88,358, and the median income for a family was $104,347. Males had a median income of $65,382 versus $39,912 for females. The per capita income for the city was $37,838. About 1.8% of families and 2.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.8% of those under age 18 and 4.6% of those age 65 or over.
Brecksville is located near or on a number of highways that provide access to neighboring communities. Its major thoroughfares are State Route 21 (Brecksville Road) north and south, and State Route 82 (Royalton Road west of SR 21, Chippewa Road east of SR 21). I-77 provides Brecksville with direct access to Cleveland and Akron and as far south as Columbia, South Carolina. Brecksville accesses I-80 (the Ohio Turnpike) at the Richfield I-77 Interchange thereby connecting Greater Cleveland to New York City and San Francisco, California.
The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority and Akron Metro RTA buslines converge in Brecksville at the decommissioned VA Medical Center off Brecksville Road, and provide access to Cleveland and Akron.
Ohio's largest airport, Cleveland Hopkins International Airport is located about fifteen miles from Brecksville. Additionally, Brecksville is 38 miles from Akron-Canton Airport via I-77. Amtrak cross-country rail service is available in downtown Cleveland.
Brecksville has a solid, diversified economy. Brecksville has branches of major regional banks, real estate firms, and national financial asset management companies. Companies such as Berkshire Hathaway's Lubrizol Corporation, Duck Creek Energy, Inc., Med Data, Inc., Truenorth Energy, Applied Medical Technology, Inc., The Ahola Corporation, Clinical Technology, Inc., NEC Corporation, Curtiss-Wright Corporation, PNC Financial Services, and AT&T are either headquartered or have sizable operations in the city. The Cleveland Clinic Data Center is located in Brecksville.
Brecksville shares a school system with its neighboring city, Broadview Heights. There are three elementary schools (Hilton Elementary, Highland Drive Elementary, Chippewa Elementary) within Brecksville proper, and an intermediate school (Central School), a junior high school, and a high school in the system. The school district's motto is: "where fine education is a heritage".
Brecksville-Broadview Heights school district was ranked the 8th best district in the state of Ohio in the 2015-16 state report cards.
PARCC tests, conducted in 2015 using the new Common Core standards, ranked Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School as the 12th best public high school in the state of Ohio.
In Ohio's 2015 State report cards, Brecksville's three elementary schools received top rankings. Chippewa Elementary ranked 7th in the state, Hilton Elementary ranked 19th, and Highland Drive Elementary ranked significantly above average as well.
In 2015, The Washington Post published the list of America's most challenging high schools. The analysis covered approximately 22,000 U.S. public high schools. The rankings were determined by taking the total number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Advanced International Certificate of Education tests given at a school each year and divide by the number of seniors who graduated. Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School ranked in the top 4 percent of all high schools in this assessment.
Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School has consistently been ranked by U.S. News & World Report magazine as being in the top 5 percent of all high schools in the United States. Additionally, Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School was recognized in Newsweek magazine's 2013 list of the top 2000 public high schools in the United States.
In 2008, the U.S. Department of Education recognized Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School as an NCLB Blue Ribbon School. Chippewa and Hilton Elementary Schools have been awarded the "School of Distinction" honor by Ohio's State Superintendent of Schools. Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School was a past nominee, by the Ohio Department of Education, for the prestigious Blue Ribbon School Award.
Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School students have received National Merit Scholars scholarships, and been candidates for the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program.
Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School's sports program competes at the state championship level. In 2016, the girls' gymnastic team won its thirteenth consecutive state title and sixteenth overall. The boys' wrestling team won the 2015 state championship and placed third at the state level in 2016. The basketball, football, soccer, cross-country, and swimming/diving programs vie for regional and state titles as well.
Brecksville-Broadview Heights middle and high school art students consistently receive regional awards through the Annual Scholastic Art & Writing Awards competition. Students are awarded Gold Keys and have their artwork judged on the national level in New York.
The BBHHS Orchestra recently received an Excellent (II) rating by the Ohio Music Education Association(OMEA).
South Suburban Montessori School, located in Brecksville’s Blossom Hill Complex, provides a Montessori education to children between 18 months and 14 years of age.
Stautzenberger College has a campus in Brecksville. Associate degrees and Board certifications are offered in:Veterinary Technology, Animal Welfare, Animal Grooming
Diagnostic Cardiovascular Sonography, Diagnostic Medical Sonography
Cuyahoga Community College affiliate Cuyahoga Valley Career Center - School of Nursing offers full and part-time degree programs.
In August 2016, Cleveland's MetroHealth System opened a $48 million, 63,200 square foot, emergency room-medical center in Brecksville.
Brecksville has a branch of Akron Children's Hospital.
In 2015, Brecksville was named Ohio's third safest city in its population size category. The study focused on recent FBI statistics.
In 2014, Brecksville was named by Family Circle magazine as one of the top ten U.S. towns to raise families. The magazine stated that Brecksville has top-rated schools and plenty of green space, including Cuyahoga Valley National Park.
Brecksville's Chippewa Garden Club was formed in 1949. The club is a perennial award winner from the Garden Clubs of Ohio. Awards include:The 2015 "Garden Club of the Year” Award. The club has won this award seven times since 1971. Most recently, the club won this award in 2005, 2007, and 2013.
The 2014 "Historic Preservation" Award for its historic park preservation project.
Brecksville won the 2003 “America in Bloom” award and was the 2003 national winner of the “Proven Winners Landscaped Areas Award.” Brecksville has won 21 Tree City Year Awards.
Brecksville Little Theatre was started in 1941 and incorporated as a non-profit community organization in 1949 under charter by the State of Ohio. Performances have been continually held in the Old Town Hall, a registered historic landmark. In 1951, the comedy “Here Today” was directed by nearby Shaker Heights native Paul Newman. The theatre provides two scholarship awards, The Jack Hruby Humanities Award and the Schoenfelt Dramatics Award, to deserving high school seniors in the arts and humanities.
Brecksville Theater on the Square, founded in 1975, has developed into a well established theater of the performing arts, providing the community with family theater, and a wide variety of drama classes and programs offered to students, pre-school through adults.
The Brecksville Center for the Arts is a non-profit, multidisciplinary art center.
To maintain Brecksville's nature preserve setting, residents have rejected the big box store and shopping mall concept for smaller, locally owned boutiques and shops.
Brecksville agreed to a Civil Defense Siren system with other cities in Cuyahoga County. The city has 4 sirens from American Signal Corporation and Whelen Engineering Company.
Jerry N. Hruby was elected to his eighth term as mayor of Brecksville which began on January 2, 2016. Mayor Hruby also serves as the city's Safety Director. In 2011 the Governor of Ohio appointed Hruby to the Ohio Turnpike Commission. He currently is serving as chairman of the commission.Dr. Theodore Breck - Great grandson of the founding father of Brecksville and an Ohio State Senator
Matthew "Matt" Capiccioni - Pro wrestler, professionally known as Matt Cross, grew up and still resides in Brecksville and is a graduate of Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
Ryan Dunn - Actor, known for the American reality series Jackass, grew up in Brecksville and is buried in Brecksville's Highland Cemetery
Steve Gillespie - PASL player and graduate of Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
Gus Heege - Playwright and actor, whose works were popular at the end of the 19th century
Florence Morse Kingsley - Late 19th, early 20th century writer of popular and religious fiction
Ann Liguori - Sports radio and television broadcaster, grew up in Brecksville and graduated from Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
Eric Musselman - NBA coach and graduate of Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
Scott Roth - NBA player and graduate of Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
Mark Schulte - MLS player and graduate of Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
Charlie Sifford - Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient. A Brecksville resident in his later years, Charles Sifford was the first African American to play on the PGA Tour. Winner of several PGA Opens, six time winner of the United Golf Association's National Negro Open, and winner of the 1975 PGA Seniors Championship.
Dr. John N. Stockwell - Late 19th, early 20th century Philosopher and Astronomer
Tom Tupa - NFL Super Bowl and Pro Bowl quarterback/punter and graduate of Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School
John M. Wilcox - Editor of the Cleveland Press