Rochester Borough is one of the most storied municipalities in Beaver County. Once considered the “hub” of the county, Rochester Borough was founded in 1849 and was previously a part of Rochester Township. During the 1860s, access to the Ohio and Beaver Rivers along with its position as a railroad junction point, made Rochester Borough an important manufacturing and cargo hub.
Rochester Borough began heavy development in 1834 when the Beaver Division Canal was completed. In the 1870s’ Rochester became a crossroads for two major railroads which further advanced local industry and business. The original business district was located along the river on Water Street. Numerous floods gradually forced merchants up to New York Avenue and Brighton Avenue.
Since the end of World War II, Rochester has evolved from a place of heavy industry into a scenic river town with numerous parks and many locally-owned businesses.
Fun Facts about Rochester Borough:
-Rochester Borough had many early names – East Bridgewater, Beaver Point, and Fairport among them – before the name Rochester was first applied in 1837.
-Rochester Borough at one time in the early 1900’s had eight operating hotels.
-The Rochester-Monaca Suspension Bridge was the first highway bridge over the Ohio River between Pittsburgh and Wheeling. It opened in 1895. It was replaced in 1930 by a new steel bridge that served citizens until 1984. In 1986, the current bridge was opened.
-The East Rochester Bridge was originally a toll bridge when opened in the 1950’s.
-Rochester once had a renowned Opera House located on Brighton Avenue.
-US Olympic Gold Medalist sprinter Lauryn Williams, Major League Baseball player Mark Grater, and professional football players Kris Griffin, Kirby Griffin, Vito “Babe” Parilli, and Mark Vlasic are went to Rochester High School.