Mentor was settled in 1797 when Charles Parker, a surveyor from Vermont, built a cabin on the marsh. This was the first settlement in what would later become Lake County.
Mentor Township officially formed in 1815 and was primarily a farming community. In 1855, the people that lived in the center of Mentor chose to incorporate 3,000 acres in the middle of the township, resulting in the formation of Mentor Village. There were few businesses at that time and most commerce was conducted in nearby Painesville or downtown Cleveland.
In 1932, Mentor resident and nurseryman Joseph Kallay developed Blaze, the country’s first patented ever-blooming rose. After that, rose growing became big business and Mentor became known as the Rose Capital of the Nation.
After a previous failed attempt to consolidate the two Mentors – the township and the village incorporated as the City of Mentor on December 18, 1963.
Today, more than 50,000 residents and 1,700 businesses call Mentor their home. Our location near State Route 2 and Interstate 90 means we’re only a short drive from Cleveland’s arts, culture and sports venues. And there’s also plenty to do right here, whether it’s dining at one of our 150 restaurants, shopping in Ohio’s 7th largest retail center, or participating in the hundreds of recreational programs offered through the City’s Recreation Department.
So, why should you make your home in Mentor?
Mentor was named one of the 100 Best Places to Live in America by Money magazine in 2006 (#68). In 2010, the publishers examined 746 cities with populations between 50,000 and 300,000 and narrowed the list by removing areas with overly expensive housing, poor school systems and significant job losses while factoring in a number of economic factors. Mentor’s ranking was #37 on the list of America’s best small cities! July 13, 2010 video clip.
Mentor enjoys a stable economy, great neighborhoods, an excellent educational system, and a reasonable cost of living.
Less than a 30-minute drive east of Cleveland, Mentor’s northern boundary sits along Lake Erie’s shore. Residents enjoy a vast system of parks, swimming pools, skate parks, nature preserves, ice arenas and Ohio’s longest public swimming beach. An extensive Bikeway System of walking and biking trails earned Mentor the designation of Bike Friendly Community in 1999.
Residents and businesses alike chose Mentor because of its location, city services, abundant employment, recreational opportunities and plentiful shopping and dining choices. For more reasons, take a quick look at the recent issue of Mentor City Magazine.
In short, Mentor is a great place to raise a family and we think you’ll feel right at home here.