Rochester skyline as seen from the bikepath near the U of R, 8-2008
Rochester, NY is located in the center of Western New York, the portion of NY which sits atop Pennsylvania. Census data for 2010 shows Rochester having 210,565 residents living within the City of Rochester, and a total of 1,079,671 in the Greater Rochester Area. City population continues to decline while suburban population continues to grow slowly.
Rochester is bordered by Chili to it's southwest, Gates to it's west, Irondequoit to it's northeast, Brighton to it's south and east, and Greece to it's northwest. A tiny bit of it also borders Irondequoit to it's south, west, and east. It touches Lake Ontario to it's north and the Genesee River cuts it in half. Seneca Park Zoo is on the border between West Rochester and Irondequoit.
In 1811 Colonel Nathaniel Rochester and his partners surveyed their land and offered lots for sale in Rochesterville. Rochester was incorporated as a city in 1834, primarily on land purchased from the Seneca Indians about 50 years earlier. The Genesee River was the economic engine of the era, powering numerous mills that led to Rochester being labeled the Flour City. Shoe and clothing manufacturing and the nursery industry replaced milling as the economic focal point between 1850 and the turn of the century.
Irish laborers for the Erie Canal and German tailors and seamstresses comprised a large percentage of the non-native population of the 1800s, but a tidal wave of Italian immigrants began arriving in 1900 and has remained influential since.
Bausch and Lomb and Gleason Tool led the manufacturing charge after the Civil War, but George Eastman's Brownie camera became the single most significant invention of the region and spurred substantial job growth until the Great Depression made photography too much of a luxury for the common man. But World War II created a need for optics, precision grinding and other manufacturing, and then came the introduction of the electrophotographic copier by Haloid/Xerox.
The end of the war was also the start of suburban growth. The city's population loss was initially offset by the migration of blacks from the south in search of manufacturing jobs. But hand-in-hand with that came stress on the infrastructure — housing, schooling and medical services — and Rochester was slow to react. According to the PBS Documentary July '64, Rochester's major employers refused to hire or promote African-Americans, despite record low unemployment rates.
Three days of riots broke out in July 1964, resulting in four deaths and numerous arrests. Saul Alinsky, an organizer of note according to some and a rabble-rouser according to others, soon arrived and the FIGHT organization (Freedom, Independence, God, Honor, Today) brought forth gifted black leaders including the Rev. Franklin Florence and Dr. Bernard Gifford.
Later William A. Johnson Jr. became the city's first black mayor in 1994, stepping into a most challenging era for Rochester. Kodak has shriveled to a mere shell of its old self, overwhelmed by complacency in the early days of the digital photography boom. Both Xerox and Bausch and Lomb have also reduced their presence in the region. Meanwhile the health care industry, higher education and smaller technology companies have become important drivers of the area's economy.
The Genesee River gave us power for flour mills
The Erie Canal gave us a way to deliver flour, greatly helping Rochester's growth.
Flour milling became the first important industry and thus the Flour City nickname.
Rochester holds the Lilac Festival in Highland Park to the attention of over 100,000 people from all over the world.
Rochester was a stop on the Underground Railroad.
The principal source of the City's water is Hemlock Lake in the Hemlock-Canadice State Forest.
The suburbs primarily get water from Lake Ontario (which with Buffalo upstream on Lake Erie is not cool).
Average snowfall is around 95.0 inches per year.
July’s are usually in the 70’s ºF and February’s around 20’s ºF. Though we sometimes hit both of those in one day.
We have a number of libraries, police stations and firehouses serving the City.
Rochester has a number of similar-sized Sister Cities located in countries around the world.
For more see: Rochester in a Nutshell
Areas of the City are defined by Rochester Neighborhoods as well as Real Estate Quadrants and still a few Wards.
Greece, Gates, Chili, Henrietta, Brighton, Irondequoit, Pittsford, Perinton, East Rochester, Fairport, Penfield, Webster, Riga, Wheatland, Mendon, Rush, Spencerport, Brockport, and Victor.
Rochester Info including a list of restaurants on PlaceFacts.net
This whole wiki is about Greater Rochester so head on over to the homepage and check out what people are saying.
Were you looking for another Rochester?
The Town of Rochester is also in New York State, roughly halfway between New York City and Albany.
There are other Rochester's in Minnesota, Michigan, New Hampshire, Vermont, Indiana, Washington, as well as the 'original' in England.
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OK, gang. I've taken a first shot at this entry, but it still amounts to little more than deck chairs on the Queen Mary. Please add some size, shape and direction to it. I'll be more than happy to make passes through it from time to time to flesh out any sketchy thoughts/outlines. — [JohnMoriello]
2005-10-14 14:59:45 hmm, I'll try to gather some basic, current information from the city website and the county —RossHattori
2007-06-21 10:50:19 Need some stuff about
Seth Ebenezer Allen. He was the first permanent white settler in what is now downtown Rochester. Arch Merrill's Sketchbook has been digitzed. http://www.rootsweb.com/~nymonroe/book/sketchbook-1.htm—CarolLucky
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