From the weird to the wonderful: 12 terrific facts about Rochester


Sure, the city of Rochester can’t claim to be quite as famous as New York state’s other big two – Buffalo and, of course, NYC – but it offers much to distinguish itself (and entice those interested in booking a stay at one of the luxury hotels in Rochester). Here are just some examples…

  • Ever heard of Sam Patch? Folks throughout New York state have – and for good reason. In the late 1820s he became a revelation by leaping off and between bridges, buildings and boat riggings – and even off the edge of Niagara Falls. However, on repeating the feat of jumping down Rochester’s Genesee Falls on November 6th 1829, he tragically managed to kill himself. So long, Sam Patch.
  • Something that separates Rochester from the pack is it can claim to be one of the snowiest cities in the entire country – it receives a median average 89.3 inches of the white stuff each year.
  • In 1872, iconic 19th Century abolitionist Frederick Douglass eventually settled in Rochester; his grave can be found in the city’s Mount Hope cemetery.
  • That said, Douglass may be tied – or even topped? – as Rochester’s most illustrious inhabitant by Susan B. Anthony, whom also in 1872, was legendarily arrested here for trying to vote. During her trial she gave a speech in defence of woman’s suffrage that remains famous throughout the world. Her home (on Madison Street) is a National Historic Landmark – and well worth visiting for those who’ve chosen to stay in hotel suites Rochester NY.
  • The byword in copier technology, Xerox was founded in Rochester in 1906 (as The Haloid Photographic Company), emerging to prominence in the 1960s.
  • That said, Rochester’s biggest claim to corporate fame is camera film giant Kodak, having been launched here by innovator extraordinaire George Eastman in 1892; he had trademarked the word ‘Kodak’ (which is actually meaningless) four years earlier – all of 130 years ago now.
  • The Rochester Red Wings are the oldest-continual franchise in minor league baseball history, having been established way back in 1899 and having participated in the longest ever professional game of ball in spring 1981; it was 33 innings long – and the result? The Red Wings lost.


  • Rochester’s signature dish is the marvellously monikered ‘garbage plate’; presumably so named because it sees a little of everything ‘thrown on to’ it; the likes of hash browns, macaroni, hamburger patties, ground beef, melted cheese and hot sauce. You may not be surprised to learn it’s supposed to be eaten for hangovers.
  • Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson Arun Gandhi is one of Rochester’s most distinguished residents today; he is the founder of the not-for-profit M. K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence.
  • The city was originally home to the NBA franchise that became the Sacramento Kings; established as the Rochester Royals, they won a league championship in 1951 and, since then, have also called Cincinnati, Kansas City and Omaha, Nebraska, home.
  • Rochester once enjoyed a subway train system; although it never rivalled NYC’s, it did last for nearly 30 years after it opened in 1927. Today, its abandoned tunnels are home to ornate graffiti and galleries of murals.
  • Finally, the city’s Strong National Museum of Play is where you’ll find the National Toy Hall of Fame. Why would you want to visit this venue? Because inducted into its loving bosom have been everything from the iconic G.I. Joe action figure to the legendary checkers, in addition to another 57 games, dolls and other irresistible, timeless toys.