Document Type



Covered staircases are enclosed exterior stairways. Their historic antecedents around the world are ancient. There are examples of covered staircases here in Toledo, Ohio. The majority of them are attached to residential buildings, but also to commercial and industrial structures. Their distinctive shape, that of an inclined three-dimensional trapezoidal box, makes them easily recognizable. Covered staircases are fast disappearing from the Toledo urban landscape. While there is a body of interdisciplinary literature on the history of stairs and stairways, there has not been, to my knowledge, a systematic study of the covered staircase anywhere, at any time. Cultural geographers have a long tradition of systematically studying various artifacts and elements of humanized landscapes, and especially detailed characteristics of rural and urban house types, contemporary and historical. However, cultural geographers have entirely overlooked the covered staircase as a significant architectural feature of residential, commercial and industrial cultural landscapes.

Degree Type

Master of Art

Department / Program

Geography and Planning

Principal Advisor

David J. Nemeth

File Type



173 p.




The University of Toledo


University of Toledo Libraries

Digital Publisher

Digital Initiatives



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