Durand Eastman Park has long been a popular recreational destination for Rochesterians. Last year while digging into the legend of the Lady in White I came across some old photos of the park’s construction, as well as some interesting old structures. The stone foundation of the old refectory is still there (often mistaken for a fort or castle ruins). But there was another interesting feature of the park which has long vanished. The bath house…
Archive: ‘Rochester History’...
Tags: bath house, Bud Martin, Durand Beach, Durand Eastman Beach, Durand Eastman Park, Durand Lake, Frank Warren, Lake Ontario, Rochester, Rochester NY, Roy Ackerman
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Transit + Infrastructure, Urban Development | 3 Comments »
On July 24, 1964 a series of events took place which led to three of the darkest days in Rochester’s history. They had come to Rochester seeking a better life, yet African Americans in Rochester at that time still had to fight for jobs, fight for education, fight for housing… even for the simple right to stand on the sidewalk in their own neighborhood and not be questioned by police. By the 1960s the mistreatment of black people in this country—over the course of centuries—finally reached a boiling point. And Rochester was in the eye of the storm…
Tags: 1964, Anthony Cerretto, Bernard Gayzer, Carrie Stevens, Dan Funk, Gene Stevens, Helen Myricks, race in Rochester NY, riot, Rochester, Rochester NY, Roger Bacon, Sal Arnone
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images | 3 Comments »
My buddies Chris Clemens and Luke Myer (from the Burned Over District blog) recently shared these photos with me. Chris and Luke were on their way to Sodus on an unrelated exploration trip when they recalled stories of a nearby abandoned Girl Scout camp and decided to stop and check it out [map ].
Luke says his mother camped here when she was a little girl. In fact, many Girl Scouts earned a badge or two here over its 60+ year history. This was camp Beech-Wood and the following is an excerpt from NYfalls.com about its history…
Tags: abandoned, abandoned places, abandoned swimming pool, Beechwood State Park, camp site, Chris Clemens, Girl Scouts camp, Girl Scouts of America, Luke Myer, photography, Rochester, Rochester NY, rochester photos, Sodus, urban exploration
Posted in Rochester Destinations, Rochester History, Rochester Images, Urban Exploration | 9 Comments »
Within the last year I have written a great deal about cities and the historic buildings they should be obligated to see maintained. Many cities cannot, will not, or do not want to penalize or fine the industrial and commercial property owners who fail to maintain the buildings within their care. Often what happens is that these neglected buildings are then demolished because they are supposedly beyond repair or structurally unsound.
It should be noted that buildings are rarely too far gone, even when roofs are missing and the “elements” have begun to reek havoc, and that often these very buildings are “structurally sound.”
Tags: Bethlehem Steel, Brennan Motor Complex, Cataract Brewery, historic preservation, Howard Decker, Iola Tuberculosis Sanatorium, Joel Helfrich, Lackawanna, Otisca Brewery, Rochester, Rochester landmark, Syracuse, Westminster Presbyterian Church
Posted in Opinion, Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History, Urban Development | 15 Comments »
“Double Jeopardy” wasn’t invented by Alex Trebek. It’s actually a procedural defense in our system of justice that forbids a defendant from being tried more than once for the same (or similar) charges. Unfortunately this rule doesn’t seem to apply with historic preservation in Rochester. Because the very same owner of this historic church at 660 West Main Street will, for a second time, ask the Zoning Board for permission to demolish the structure to make way for a discount store.
Dawn Noto is president of the Susan B. Anthony Neighborhood Association. She was concerned about the demolition plans in March of 2013 when the Zoning Board blocked them the first time. This time Dawn says the conditions are no different and the City should be working with the owner on a plan to rehab the church building instead of entertaining his plan for a second time…
Tags: 660 W. Main Street, Dawn Noto, demolition, Designated Building of Historic Value, development, development plans, Marvin Maye, Rochester, Rochester NY, Susan B. Anthony Neighborhood, urban design, Westminster Presbyterian Church, zoning, Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA), zoning code
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester News, Urban Development | 24 Comments »
You may recall last year when Otto Vondrak told us the story of how the sole survivor of the Rochester subway fleet, Car 60, found its way home to Rochester. Since 1998 the car has been at the Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum awaiting restoration. To be perfectly honest, most of the volunteers who were involved in its return to Rochester passed on, putting restoration efforts on the back burner. But now, finally, this Sunday the museum will kick off a fundraising (and awareness building) campaign to restore Rochester Subway Car 60 for the public to enjoy once again…
Tags: donate, fundraiser, history of Rochester, Otto M. Vondrak, Rochester, Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum, Rochester history, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, Rochester subway car 60, Rochester Subway photos
Posted in Events, Rochester Destinations, Rochester History, Rochester News, Rochester Subway | 1 Comment »
Rochester has long been home to a vibrant and diverse music scene. Original music has always had room to find an audience here, a luxury most cities cannot claim, but we support our own. Even in the pre-punk days local bands like The Invictas , Soul Brothers Six and Duke Jupiter were able to make a name on a national level. But beyond those lucky few lie the stories of dozens of bands who achieved their own form of greatness. With an array of clubs and bars encouraging original voices there has never been a lack of up-and-comers (and should-have-made-its) hitting the stage on any given night.
A little over twenty years ago David Baumgartner, Sean Leahy, Will Veeder and Kris Durso joined those ranks as Muler . During their two decade career, Muler has embodied everything that makes this scene unique. They were just four guys who made loud tuneful rock and roll in the least pretentious way possible…
Tags: Brad Lewis, history of Rochester, Muler, Muler the band, Multi-use Community Cultural Center (MuCCC), music, Rochester, Rochester music history, Rochester NY, WAYO, WAYO radio
Posted in Art + Culture, Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History | 2 Comments »
With all of the recent flooding in our area, RocSubway reader Michael Delaney wrote in and suggested, “a great idea for an article would be about the history of flooding in Rochester and the civil engineering that has gone into solving the issue. Beyond the dams, I’ve heard that there are huge storm sewer tunnels underneath the city. It would be very interesting to know more about it.”
Situated at the intersection of the Genesee River and Erie Canal, Rochester’s geography has blessed—or cursed—us with a long long history of great floods. Before the construction of the Mount Morris Dam (1948-1952) records indicate the City of Rochester had experienced severe flooding about every seven years between 1865 and 1950. Talk about a pesky problem.
Digging into all of the engineering marvels that have spared modern Rochesterians from most of these high waters could easily span many pages. And I promise to dedicate future posts on the subject. But for now, I want to show just how bad this problem was by highlighting just one flooding disaster that occurred in late March, 1913…
Tags: Aqueduct Bridge, Atlantic Supply House, Bartholomay Beer, Black Creek, Brown Street, C.P. Ford & Company, Central Avenue, Charles Adam's Sons Grinding, Court Street, Dave Solomon, downtown Rochester, Erie Canal, Erie Canal Aqueduct, F.A. Sherwood Company, F.H. Loeffler Company, F.P. Van Hoesen Company, Fahy Market, Fifth Avenue Clothes Shop, flood, Front Street, Genesee Aqueduct, Genesee Provision Company, Genesee River, Gorsline Building, history of Rochester, Hotel Richmond, Hyman Davis Shoes, J.C. Vine's Columbia Hotel, J.C. Wilson Company, J.G. Zweigle's, J.G. Zweigle's Sons, Jacob Goldstein's Lodging House, John M. Forster Company, local history, Market Streets, Mill Street, Mount Morris Dam, Myer's Department Store, old photos, old photos of Rochester, old photos of Rochester NY, People's Rescue Mission, Plymouth Avenue, Postal Telegraph Cable Company, Powers Building, Rienzi, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester NY, Rochester Poultry & Commission Company, Rochester Thread Company, Rosenberg's Pawnshop, Scottsville, South Avenue, Varlan's Hotel, W.T. Bridle Furniture, Weis & Fisher Company, West Shore railroad bridge, William H. Larkin Hotel, William Pigeon Shoes, Zweigle's
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images | 6 Comments »
In part one of our three part Charlotte bonanza, we looked briefly at the history of Charlotte, from its formation in 1792, through its resort years and annexation in the early 20th century. In part two, we’ll look at Charlotte as it is today. Let’s start with the lay of the land. Shown above is the official definition of the city’s neighborhoods. As you know, Charlotte is the one at the top. Zooming in (and switching to Google maps) here’s what we see…
Tags: Charlotte, Filling In, Filling In Charlotte, Matthew Denker, Port of Rochester/Charlotte, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester NY
Posted in Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History, Urban Development | 5 Comments »
Welcome, readers, to the first of a three part series on Charlotte. This first part will serve as an introduction to the series and a brief history of Charlotte. The second part will be a survey, in the engineering sense, of the current state of Charlotte. It will include the demographics of the neighborhood and the built environment, as they exist today. Finally, the third part will layout a vision for Charlotte that works to harness all of the potential of the neighborhood. This final part will be broken into recommendations for residential and commercial development, transportation, and governance.
The plans described here will be ambitious, but we shouldn’t let ourselves shy away from ambition – as you may know, Charlotte has recently been in the news over some redevelopment plans. While Filling-In believes both plans have virtues, they both have numerous weaknesses as well. Because we are unassociated with any of the plans currently in play, and will believe they are built when we see it, the plans presented here will assume they did not happen, and instead will show a different vision of Charlotte’s future.
But now, we present a brief history of Charlotte.
Tags: Beach Avenue, Charlotte, Charlotte Beach, Filling In, Filling In Charlotte, Lake Avenue, Matthew Denker, old photos, old photos of Rochester NY, Ontario Beach, Ontario Beach Park, Port of Rochester/Charlotte, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester NY
Posted in Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History, Urban Development | 28 Comments »
Rochester’s beloved Hojack Swing Bridge has been gone for more than a year, but now a new exhibit at the New York Museum of Transportation will honor the history of the former Rochester landmark. The exhibit is a re-creation of the bridge’s control cabin and contains the original steam engine, control devices, and a working model of the bridge…
Tags: Charlotte, demolition, Genesee River, Hojack Railroad Line, Hojack Swing Bridge, New York Museum of Transportation (NYMT), Port of Rochester, Rochester, Rochester NY, rochester photos
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 3 Comments »
No, the headline isn’t in reference to the recent controversy surrounding the port development. I wanted to take a look back, at the “good ole days,” when Ontario Beach was known as the Coney Island of central and western New York. Here’s a birds eye of view of all the shiny happy fun… The Dentzel carousel. The L.A. Thompson’s Scenic Railway. The Auditorium (a.k.a. the House of Hilarity). Such good times.
Then I noticed the peculiar site of smoke and flames in the background (click the image for a larger view). Holy smokes! Charlotte is burning! Somebody call 9-1-1!!
Tags: carousel, Charlotte, Charlotte Beach, Donovan A. Shilling, Livingston Hotel, Messmore's Fighting the Flames, Ontario Beach, Ontario Beach Park, Ontario Hotel, Port of Rochester/Charlotte, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester NY, The House That Jack Built crazy house
Posted in Rochester Destinations, Rochester History, Rochester Images | 1 Comment »
Tags: dimple machine, invention, Isabella Gilbert, made in Rochester, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester Made, Rochester NY, Vicki Robinson
Posted in Art + Culture, Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History | 1 Comment »
Many of you kids will be too young to remember this – thank heavens. But five years ago on this very day, Rochester NY made national headlines when it was slammed by one of the worst food shortages in our nation’s history—possibly the world. That’s right. Popeyes up on Lake Ave ran out of chicken…
Tags: chain restaurant, drive-through, drive-thru, fast food restaurant, Food, Lake Avenue, Popeyes Chicken, Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Rochester history, this date in Rochester history, urban agriculture, urban living
Posted in Art + Culture, Rochester History | 2 Comments »
The last remnants of Rochester’s third New York Central Railroad Station, designed by noted architect Claude Bragdon, were demolished almost forty years ago. Now a team of researchers at the University of Rochester is seeking assistance from the local community to help restore the station’s memory…
Tags: A. Joan Saab, Amtrak Station, Bragdon Station, Claude Bragdon, Claude Bragdon Digital Humanities Project, Joan Shelley Rubin, New York Central Railroad, railroad station, Rochester Amtrak Station, University of Rochester, UofR
Posted in Art + Culture, Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 6 Comments »
The other day my three-year-old was shooting video of his stuffed animals with his big sister’s iPad, and a wave of nostalgia crashed over me. I suddenly realized my kids will probably never get to experience joy of film photography. They’ll never understand the thrill of loading a fresh roll into the back of a camera. They’ll never feel those mechanical clicks and vibrations of the film advancing to the next frame. And they’ll never know the excitement of getting a stack of pictures back from the developer.
How would I even explain this antique technology to them? I know, I’ll Google it. Hey what do you know, here’s an old manual for the Kodak Brownie Camera (No. 2)…
Tags: Brownie, Canadian Kodak Co., instruction manual, Kodak, Kodak Brownie Camera No. 2, Rochester history, Rochester NY
Posted in Rochester History | 3 Comments »
A RocSubway reader is looking to sell this old Rochester “Wheeler Dealer” board game ($50). Wheeler Dealer is a game of two parts. First, players travel the world while buying, selling, bargaining and trading products. In part two those products are sold back to the bank or auctioned to the highest bidder. Licensed versions of the game were produced for many cities around the world in the 1980s, including this one for Rochester…
Tags: Brian Bram, I'd Rather Be In Rochester (IRBIR), IRBIR Alien, Laurie Dirkx, Michael Glenn Productions, Rochester board game, Rochester Chamber of Commerce, Wheeler Dealer
Posted in Art + Culture, Rochester Gifts, Rochester History | 4 Comments »
Friday, March 18, 1910. 1:55 P.M. – President Taft, on his way to Rochester from Chicago, makes a quick stop in Buffalo. He steps off the train to greet an exclusive few; the leaders of Buffalo, including their recently elected mayor, Mr. Louis P. Fuhrmann (an avid baseball fan), some newspaper reporters, Mr. George Dietrich, the Chamber of Commerce President of Rochester, and last but not least, Rochester Mayor Hiram H. Edgerton. After a few minutes of smiles and handshakes, Taft who was reportedly exhausted from his stay in Chicago, is ready to get back on the train car where he can sit, and (hopefully leisurely) talk to some new faces, Mr. Dietrich and Mayor Edgerton…
Tags: baseball, Charles T. Chapin, first pitch, George Dietrich, history of Rochester, Jimmy Combs, Kid Mueller, Louis P. Fuhrmann, Mayor Hiram Edgerton, opening pitch, President Taft, Rochester, Rochester Hustlers, Rochester NY
Posted in Art + Culture, Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History | 2 Comments »