ESU Cleveland Branch

A Message from the Cleveland Branch President

What is the ESU about? Other noteworthy statements notwithstanding, this is how I answer that question: "Better English … A Better World". I find it sufficiently comprehensive for the inquirer to grasp, yet provocative enough to generate follow-up dialogue in any context, be it social, educational, or literary.

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History of the ESU

The English-Speaking Union of the United States was created to fulfill a mission.  It was formally organized in the United States in 1920 and arose from the conviction of its founder, Sir Evelyn Wrench and a group of like-minded American and British friends, that maintenance of the close personal and national ties forged during World War I was necessary for the preservation of peace. He imagined the ESU as an inclusive organization "founded in no narrow attitude of race pride, in no spirit of hostility to any people."  Its educational mission would be carried out by a host of activities allowing for personal contact between peoples at every level.

The Cleveland Branch was founded in 1923 under President John A. Penton of the Penton Publishing Co. The Branch disbanded at the end of World War II, to be re-activated in 1960 under the presidency of Dr. Harlan Hamilton, Professor of English at Western Reserve University (now CWRU)

News And Events

"I replicated the Globe stage in Ohio" by Buss Scholar Cassie Neumann

News Photo
It was our first day at the Globe.  The day was warm and the sky was blue above the wooden "O." Jo, a London director and actress, was giving us a tour inside the theater and asked for our first impressions.   Someone said the space was smaller than they envisioned. I was surprised how colorful the stage was.  A third person said this felt like a pilgrimage - English and theatre teachers making a journey to the stage where Shakespeare's plays were first performed.  For all these years, first as students and now as teachers, we were reading and studying these great plays, now we are here.  The Globe Theatre felt sacred, magical. 

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Upcoming Events


April 23
T.G.I.T Party at Blue Canyon in Aurora
Click here for more information 

May 21
BUSS Scholar Speaker & Dinner

June 28
Annual Meeting & Brunch
Westwood Country Club

(Announcements to all events will
be mailed and/or emailed)


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Shakespeare Competition

Announcement Photo

2014 Cleveland Shakespeare Finalists

Cleveland winner Lia Yoo of Lake Ridge Academy (2nd from Right) was a National Semi-Finalist at Lincoln Center

Click Here to read more


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BUSS SCHOLAR Announced March 2014

News Photo

Cassie Neumann,  a teacher at Brunswick High School, will participate in the British University Summer Scholar program at the Globe Theater in London. Cassie has an extensive background in theater and Shakespeare. 


The English-Speaking Union

Cleveland Branch

Cleveland Branch Landmark Photo

Welcome to the ESU

The ESU celebrates English as a shared language to foster global understanding and good will by providing educational and cultural opportunities for students, educators, and members.

To find out more about our programs click here.