Seth Maney is a real estate developer and agent who lives in Clifton. He is a candidate for Cincinnati City Council in 2017 and was unanimously endorsed by the Hamilton County Republican Party. He has served as vice president of the OTR Community Council, trustee of the Clifton Town Meeting, board member of the Over-The-Rhine Foundation and advisor to NewCo Cincinnati.
Hi, I’m Seth Maney. I’m running for Cincinnati City Council, and I’m asking you to be Cincy Proud.
Cincinnati, you were the subject of my college thesis and where I chose to put down roots. Where I came to work in real estate and business district development, where my partner moved in order to start our lives together, and where I’ve served three terms on two community councils. I am enthralled by your history and believe you are one of the great American cities. I am a Cincinnatian by choice.
Cincinnati, why should you be proud? After the American Revolution, you were the first boomtown west of the Alleghenies. A new city in a new republic showing the world what an American city would look like. You became the Queen of the West. Too far north to be Southern and too far south to be Northern. A beacon of freedom in antebellum America. You were a steamboat town, and you gave the world professional baseball. You came on hard times during the Great War and the anti-German hysteria forced you to change your street names. Prohibition shut down your saloons and breweries, leaving architectural shells and ghostly lagering cellars waiting to be rediscovered.
Still, you were “the most beautiful of the inland cities of the Union,” according to Winston Churchill when he visited you in 1933. You continued to grow until your population peaked around 500,000 between 1950 and 1960. Managed decline would define the final decades of the 20th century, and you were forced to take a good, hard look in the mirror in 2001.
And now, you’re taking a look at yourself again. What will the future bring? And what should you become? You are said to “punch above your weight class” and “have the greatest collection of assets of any city its size in America.” You still have the heart of that boomtown, but you’re a shell of your former self. A city built for half a million that’s now struggling to break 300,000. You’ve made exceptional progress, but you’ve just started to scratch the surface. You are ready to boom again.
Cincinnati, your superlative Over-the-Rhine entranced and enticed me, and the gas-lit streets of Clifton convinced me to stay. And although you may ask me my high school, you probably will not recognize the answer. But that’s okay because I can still hear the beat of your boomtown heart. I am proud of that new city in a new republic. Are you?