About This Place
Parma is a city in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States. It is the largest suburb of Cleveland and the seventh largest city in the state of Ohio. As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 81,601.
Parma is a city southwest of Cleveland. It is bounded by Cleveland and Brooklyn on the north, Brooklyn Heights, and Seven Hills on the east, North Royalton and Broadview Heights on the south, and Brook Park, Middleburg Heights, and Parma Heights on the west. Parma was originally part of Parma Township, created on March 7, 1826. The first settlers were the Benaiah Fay family from New York State, who settled along the Cleveland-Columbus Road in 1816. The name was taken from Parma, New York, where it was probably derived from the early-19th century fascination with classical Italy. During the 19th century, Parma remained largely agricultural. In 1912, a portion of the township seceded to form the village of Parma Heights. In the Fall of 1924, Parma was incorporated as a village, and in 1926 it adopted the mayor-council form of government. On January 1, 1931, a proposition to annex it to the city of Cleveland was defeated, and Parma became a city. Parma's tremendous growth came after World War II as young families began moving from Cleveland into the Suburbs. During the Cold War, Parma's Nike Site Park, now James Day Park, housed Nike missiles located in underground silos. Between 1950 and 1960 Parma's population soared from 28,897 to 82,845 (during the 1960's it was the fastest growing city in the U.S.). The population peaked in 1970 at 100,216 before falling to the currently estimated population of 81,000.
Parma was, throughout the 1960s and 1970s, the butt of jokes by local movie show hosts Ghoulardi, Big Chuck & Little John, and The Ghoul, due to its Eastern Europeand, most specifically Polish, make-up. Ghoulardi famously made a series of shorts called "Parma Place." The jokes dealt with Parmans' alleged love of white socks, pink flamingos, chrome balls, kielbasa and pierogi and the polka.