Rochester People Places and Things

A listing of Rochester people, places and things:

This is an ongoing list of famous Rochester people, places, and things. There are varying amounts of information regarding the data on this page. This is due to some research data being readily available, along with what information that has been sent to us. We will be continuously adding to this. As far as we know everything here is truthful, however if anyone sees any discrepancies we would appreciate hearing about it. Also feel free to send us information regarding anyone or anything else that you feel should be added here. Thanks and we hope you enjoy this page and will continue to contribute to it.

If you would like to discuss any people, places, or things with ties to Rochester, feel free to contact us via our form.

Bud Abbott
Bud is known as the straight-man half of Abbott and Costello. He managed theater here in the 1920’s.

David Accorso (Musician Likes Life in the Slow Lane)
(East High, Livonia resident) was an extremely successful musician in his day, while among others, he was the drummer for Robert Goulet and for over 10 years with Julio Iglesias, among many, many other accomplishments.

Drum Booth at Dynamic Recording Studio

Ebenezer “Indian” Allen
Indian Allen was the first white man to live within the boundaries of Wyoming  county. He might be a little bit more Infamous rather than famous. Unfortunately he was considered a swindler, a polygamist, an adulterer and murderer. At one point he built a saw and gristmill on the site of Rochester, and eventually left for Canada.

Joe Altobelli
A Rochester Red Wing legend. Not only did Joe lead the Wings to a Junior World Series championship, but did the same in the “bigs” with Baltimore.

Susan B. Anthony
1820 – 1906 She grew up in Massachusetts and came here in 1850. While attempting to speak at a temperance rally in 1852, she was silenced because of her sex. As a result of this, she devoted her life to gaining social and political equality for women. She was convicted for a violation of federal law for voting in the 1872 presidential election.

Johnny Antonelli
Major league pitcher, for several teams, most notably the New York/San Francisco Giants. During his seven seasons with the Giants from 1954-60, Antonelli was one of baseball’s most consistent performers. He averaged 15 wins and just under 230 innings pitched per year. Only once did he allow more hits than innings pitched. Following his playing days, Antonelli managed in the Mets’ minor league system for the Double-A Memphis Blues (1969-72) and the Triple-A Tidewater Tides (1973-74). He currently makes his home in Pittsford, N.Y.

John Ashbery
Poet, born in Rochester in 1927. In 1975 he won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award. In 1984 he received the Bollingen Prize and in 1985 a MacArthur Prize fellowship.

Benjamin M. Baker
Benjamin M. Baker was the owner of what was called South park in the 1800’s. He owned a livery farm on that spot and now called Genesee Valley Park. His daughter Frances A. Baker donated 120 Acers to the city of Rochester  in 1908 for the Genesee Valley Park. Benjamin was a very prominent and rich man and acquired what was called Baker’s Block on S.Fitzhugh Street in the heart of Rochester. He owned a hotel and many companies in that area. He was born in 1808 and died in 1897 so he lived a long life and was a service to the Rochester Area. When he died he left the property in Genesee Park to his daughter Frances who died in 1936. Mt.Hope Cemetery is where Benjamin and his wife Angelina is buried.

Andrea Barrett
Andrea Barrett has published five novels: Lucid Stars, Secret Harmonies, The Middle Kingdom, The Forms of Water and The Voyage of the Narwhal and two story collections, Ship Fever (for which she won a National Book Award for Fiction in 1996) and most recently Servants of the Map (Feb. 2002). For the most part, Barrett makes her home in Rochester.

Phillip Barry
Phillip wrote “The Philadelphia Story” for Katherine Hepburn. He did much of it while living in the Rochester area.

Carmen Basilio
Carmen is a current Rochester resident, and former welterweight and middleweight boxing champion. He was the leading vote-getter in World Boxing Hall of Fame balloting for 1982.There has never been a tougher, more tenacious and determined battler in any weight class. He won the welter crown by knocking out Tony DeMarco in one of boxing’s all-time thrillers in 1955, and the 160-pound title by besting the great Sugar Ray Robinson two years later.

Clara Barton
Clara founded the nation’s first Red Cross chapter, in Livingston county, in 1881. Clara Barton founded the American Red Cross at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church which still stands at 21 Clara Barton St. in Dansville, NY. There is a New York State historical marker in front of the church commemorating the event

Kim Batten
East High School graduate, Kim Batten (born 29 March 1969 in McRae, Georgia, U.S.) is a retired female American 400 meter hurdles champion. She was the 1995 world record holder in the women’s 400-meter hurdles. Batten graduated from the Florida State University in 1991, the same year she won her first national championship – the U.S. National Championships, the first of six national championships (1991, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998).

Batten is 5 feet 7 inches (1.70 m) tall.

Batten’s finest year came in 1995, when she won Gold in the World Athletics Championships breaking the World Record for the 400m Hurdles in a time of 52.61 seconds. Batten also came first in the Pan American Games and first in the national indoor championships.

In 1996 she won silver in the 1996 Olympic Games and in 1997 won bronze in the World Athletics Championships. She was also a member of the 2000 US Olympic track team.

In 1999 an injury to a nerve in her foot caused her to miss most of the season. Batten retired at the end of the 2001 season.

Batten currently resides at Atlanta, GA.

John Jacob Bausch
(July 25, 1830 – February 24, 1926) was a German-American optician who co-founded Bausch & Lomb (with Henry Lomb).

Born as Johann Jakob Bausch in Großsüßen (today part of Süßen) in Württemberg, Germany to Georg Bausch, a baker, and his wife Anna Schmid. Bausch was eighteen when he moved to Berne, Switzerland, where he found work in an optical shop designing camera lenses. The following year he emigrated to the United States.

In 1853, Bausch opened a retail optical shop in Rochester, New York. Bausch sold spectacles, thermometers, field glasses, magnifiers and opera glasses. His friend Henry Lomb invested his savings in Bausch’s shop and in 1855 became his partner.

While walking in a New York street, Bausch found a piece of Vulcanite Rubber. He took it back to his workshop and discovered he could make eyeglass frames from the material. At that time frames were mainly made from gold or European horn.

In 1860, the Bausch & Lomb company built the first machine in America to produce spectacles. Lomb was in charge of sales and Bausch concentrated on manufacturing.

During the American Civil War, the blockade caused the price of gold and European horn to rise dramatically. This resulted in a growing demand for the Bausch & Lomb spectacles made from Vulcanite.

In 1876, the company began manufacturing microscopes. Later that year the Bausch & Lomb Optical Company won a distinction at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. The company also produced photographic lenses (1883), spectacle lenses (1889), microtomes (1890), binoculars and telescopes (1893).

Bausch’s company did very well during the First World War as the war created a demand for binocular telescopes, searchlight mirrors, periscopes and torpedo tube sights.

Tyson Beckford
Pittsford Mendon High School 1990 – Male Model for Ralph Lauren (Polo) one of biggest in world.

Francis Bellamy
Francis was the author of “The Pledge of Allegiance” and studied at the University of Rochester and the Rochester Theological Seminary.

Paul Berg
Paul was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1980 “for his fundamental studies of the biochemistry of nucleic acids, with particular regard to recombinant DNA”. Paul became Honorary D.Sc. University of Rochester (1978) (contributed by Rich)

Ingrid Bergman
Ingrid, the Swedish born actress, spent 1941 here while her first husband attended medical school. In 1942, she performed with Humphrey Bogart in one of the greatest love stories the movies have ever produced, Casablanca.

Rudy Boesch
Rudy is a retired Navy Seal, who was born in Rochester and attended Edison Tech. Rudy is well known for his participation in the television series “Survivor.”

Jessie Bonstelle
Born in 1871 in Greece, NY and died in 1932 Jessie is perhaps one of Rochester’s most noteworthy legitimate actresses and drama coaches. Her first appearance in public was at the age of 2 as a singer, and was featured on her first national tour aged 7. She appeared in leading roles in her teens with the Schubert Company and founded acting troupes in Rochester, Buffalo, Toronto and Detroit. She coached or otherwise assisted many young actors in their early days, including Melvyn Douglas, William Powell, Ann Harding and Sylvia Field. She was married to actor Alexander Hamilton Stuart. She went on to play NYC’s Broadway.  Eventually she founded her own theatre in Detroit, the Bonstelle Theatre. She is buried in Mount Hope Cemetery.

Peter Breck
Peter is another Rochester native with ties to TV and Films. He played Nick Barkley on TV’s “The Big Valley” from 1965 to 1969. Some of his film credits include “The Crawling Hand”, “Benji”, and “Thunder Road”.

Nick Bremigan
Nick was a professional umpire in the American League.

Richard Brookhiser
(Irondequoit High ’73), writer, author, historian. Currently senior editor of National Review. Author of the following books: “Alexander Hamilton, American”; “America’s First Dynasty: The Adamses, 1735-1918”; “Founding Father: Rediscovering George Washington”; “Gentleman Revolutionary: Governeur Morris, the Rake Wrote the Constitution”; “Outside Story: How Democrats and Republicans Re-Elected Reagan”; “The Way of the Wasp: How It Made America, and How It Can Save It, So to Speak”.

Foster Brooks
Foster is best known as a ” lovable lush” comedian. He has lived in Rush for years. A sign that you may have had too much to drink would be that Foster appears sober to you.

Louise Brooks
Louise was born in 1906 in Kansas. She is best known for her career in the silent movies in the 1920’s, but was also a dancer and a writer. A couple of her most memorable performances were in Pabst’s Pandora’s Box {Lulu or Die Buchse Der Pandora} (UFA, 1929) and Diary of a Lost Girl {Tagebush Einer Verloren} (UFA, 1929). She moved to Rochester in 1956 to study film and to write. She remained her until her death in 1985.

Billie Burke
A tireless trouper, Burke appeared in virtually every sort of film, from rugged westerns like Sgt. Rutledge (1960) to a pair of surprisingly good two-reel comedies for Columbia Pictures in the late 1940s. If she had done nothing else worthwhile in her seven-decade career, Burke would forever be remembered for her lighthearted portrayal of Glinda the Good Witch in the matchless “The Wizard of Oz” (1939). Billie was married to Florenz Ziegfeld Jr. best known for his series of theatrical revues, the Ziegfeld Follies.

Elbert J. “Al” Butler
Al was an American basketball player. Al played Basketball for East High School in 1954-57. He played collegiately for the Niagara University. He was selected by the Boston Celtics in the 2nd round (17th pick overall) of the 1961 NBA Draft. He played for the Celtics (1961), New York Knicks (1962-64) and Baltimore Bullets (1964-65) in the NBA for 234 games. Al scored 12 points while playing for NY Knicks in a game where Wilt Chamberlin scored 100 points.

After his playing days Al went on to be a teacher at East High School.

Marty Byrnes
Marty is a Rochester resident who went on to play in the NBA. In 1980 he played for the NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers.

Cabo Frio
A fusion of ideas, cultural identities, and genres of music is the best way to describe veteran jazz group Cabo Frio. Emerging from the musically fertile Upstate New York region-home to a host of other acclaimed musicians like Cab Calloway, Chuck Mangione, and Steve Gadd. Cabo Frio’s beginnings date back to 1979, when members of the group from the Rochester-Buffalo area joined forces.

Over the past two decades, the group has recorded six albums and toured with the likes of Buddy Rich, Phyllis Hyman, Jeff Lorber, Joan Jett, The Yellow Jackets, Dave Valentine, Paquito D’Rivera, The Crusaders, and Joe Sample. Cabo Frio has participated in national jazz festivals, sharing the bill with such notables as Miles Davis, Carlos Santana, and Kenny G. The group has appeared regularly across the country at such venues as the Newport Jazz Festival, Blue Note in New York City, Blues Alley in Washington D.C., the Baltimore Inner Harbor Concert Series, and Carnegie [Mellon] Hall. Named after a city in Brazil, Cabo Frio has strived to reflect cultural diversity in its music. Influenced by cultures around the world, its members meld their backgrounds and individual sounds to create music that is as diverse as its audience.

Cabo Frio’s recording career began in 1982, with the release of their self-titled album; at that time they were at the forefront of the genre of music called fusion

Ryan Callahan
 (born March 21, 1985 in Rochester, New York) is an American ice hockey right winger and an alternate captain of the New York Rangers of the National Hockey League (NHL). Ryan grew up in Hilton and has a house in Greece.

Callahan played one year of high school hockey for Hilton High School. He began his junior career with the Rochester Junior Americans of the Empire Junior B Hockey League where he played for two seasons, 1999–2001, then moving on to the Syracuse Jr. Crunch and Buffalo Lightning of the OPJHL before moving onto a four-year OHL stint with the Guelph Storm, where he played alongside future Ranger teammate Daniel Girardi. Ryan turned professional with the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League where he played most of the 2006–07 season.

Cab Calloway
Cab is a famous jazz man who was born here in 1907.Cab is famous for the words HI-DE-HI-DEHI-DE-HO and HO-DE-HO-DE-HO-DE-HEE. Many of you may remember him in the movie “The Blues Brothers” from 1980.

Wendell Castle
The sculptor who designed and built the 500th Steinway Grand (which was celebrated in Carnegie Hall).

Alfred “Al” Cervi
Al is a former player for the Rochester Royals basketball team. He was elected to The NBA hall of fame in 1984.

Julie Cialini
Actress and Playboy Playmate. (contributed by Rev. Dr. Lazlo Devaint)

Bob Cicherillo
Bob grew up in Greece graduating from Greece Athena High School, and was a professional Body Builder. Later he was on the Show “American Gladiators.”

Jordan Clarke
As Billy Lewis on Guiding Light, Jordan Clarke had been coming into the homes of viewers on and off for the past fifteen years. He originated Billy in May 1983 and continued playing the maverick businessman until January 1987. He then returned to the show in June 1989 until 1994. Most recently, he rejoined the cast in 1997.

Clarke actually began his work with Guiding Light in November 1974, when he joined the CBS daytime drama in the role of Dr. Tim Ryan.

Born in Rochester, NY, Clarke attended Cornell University, graduating with a bachelors degree in philosophy and an MFA degree in acting in 1971. He continued his theatrical training at the New York University School of the Arts, where he studied with John Heffernan and Peter Kass.

He has been active in regional theater with the Ithaca Repertory Theatre, the Olney Theatre and Long Wharf Theatre. He was a co-founder of the off-Broadway Shaliko Co., and acted there in Shadow of a Gunman and Children of the Gods.

Clarke has appeared in numerous nighttime series including Threes Company, Knight Rider, The Tony Randall Show, Fantasy Island, M*A*S*H and Law and Order. He has had featured roles in the television miniseries The Executioners Song and Testimony of Two Men, and was also seen in the television movies Charleston, Forever, Jacob, Have I Loved and Ridley Scotts White Squall.

He plays the guitar and trumpet and writes fiction, poetry and film scripts. He has previously been involved in such diverse businesses as running a construction company and raising purebred quarter horses.

In 2006, Jordan won his first Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a drama series.

The actor has a daughter Chelsea (b. 1983) and lives in New York City.

Buffalo Bill Cody
Buffalo Bill, a “Wild West” showman, lived here during the 1870’s.

Mitzie Collins
Mitzie specializes in traditional folk music from a variety of countries. She sings and plays hammered dulcimer, mountain dulcimer, pump organ, banjo, guitar, piano, and other acoustic instruments. Mitzie and her husband, Tom Bohrer, run  their family business here, Sampler Records. Mitzie is also a graduate of the Eastman School of Music.

Chuck Connors
The TV star of the television series “The Rifleman”, played professional basketball here in the 1940’s.Connors played for the Rochester Royals and helped to lead them to the 1946 National Basketball League championship. (The only Major League Championship for Rochester in any sport)

Gene Cornish
Born in Ottawa but moved to the US when he was a child after his mother (vocalist for Woody Herman and Ozzie Nelson) married an American. They relocated to Rochester, New York and Gene attended Ben Franklin High School. Cornish made his way through several area garage acts. Following a solo stint in the early ’60’s, he became guitarist with Joey Dee And The Starlighters who were regulars at the Peppermint Lounge in New York. With his time spent in Manhattan he was eventually approached by Felix Cavaliere in 1965 to join a new group with Dino Danelli and Eddie Brigati called the Young Rascals. The band would go on to rack up hit after hit as the Young Rascals and later as The Rascals including “Groovin'”, “How Can I Be Sure”, “A Beautiful Morning”, and “People Got To Be Free”.

Gladys Cory
A native Rochesterian, Gladys was the first woman to be inducted into the Bowling Hall of Fame. (contributed by Family)

Midge Costanza
Midge was once active on the local political scene. Eventually she moved on to the National level as a campaign manager for former President Jimmy Carter. Currently she is active in San Diego area politics.

Tom Coughlin
Born in Waterloo, Tom at one time coached RIT football. He is currently the head coach for the NFL New York Giants, and formerly the Head Coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

William J. Cox
Besides being a teacher, and lifeguard supervisor for 60 years, he was an Olympian in track and field. William J. Cox from Rochester, New York, joined American teamrnates for bronze medals in the 3,000 meter team race during the 1924 Olympics held in Paris.

Richard Ben Cramer
Ben is a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter/author. Acclaimed for: his influential best-seller, What it Takes: The Way to the White House, for Joe DiMaggio, The Hero’s Life, afor his writing about Ted Williams, Mr. Cramer is a journalist whose dispatches from the Middle East for The Philadelphia Inquirer won the Pulitzer for International Reporting in 1979. His work has appeared in Rolling Stone, Esquire, The New York Times Magazine,Time and Newsweek. (Brighton High School class of 1967)

Irving Crane
Irving was born in Livonia, New York. His love for the game of billiards started as a child, when he was given a toy billiard table. Although he played steadily as a teenager, he did not enter tournament play until the age of 23. He won his first world title in 1942. Since then, he has won almost two dozen major championships, including the world crown in 1946, 1955, 1966, 1968, 1970, 1972, plus the International Roundrobin championship in 1968. Crane was the victor in the 1978 World Series of Billiards (a combination of 14.1 and 9-ball) against a strong field of outstanding competitors. His greatest triumph, however, was his victory in the 1966 U.S. Open, when he won the championship in a never-to-be-excelled record run of 150 and out.

Andrea Del Conte
Andrea Del Conte is an internationally recognized performer, choreographer and teacher. Born in Rochester, New York, she began studying classical ballet at the age of four. English choreographer, Anton Dolin, discovered her at a performance of the Nutcracker (Eastman School of Music Theater) where she danced the Spanish Chocolate variation. He strongly encouraged her to pursue Spanish dance. Ms. Del Conte began her studies in Spain soon after in Madrid. Her early training was with Paco Fernandez and Carmen Mora in Madrid and Mariquita Flores and Estrella Morena in New York City.

.Terry Diehl
Terry represents another of the fine PGA golfers to have come from our area.

Eleanor Foa Dienstag
Authored the book, Whither Thou Goest (1976), while living in Rochester. It’s the story of an uprooted housewife following her husband as he gets lured from one corporate job to another. Her husband, an attorney, was working for Sterling Homex, a modular home manufacturer with government contracts, at the time (mid-70s) they were discovered to be fraudulently reporting sales and ultimately folded. (contributed by Rich)

Taye Diggs
Taye was born in New Jersey and grew up in Rochester, New York, where he attended High School of the Arts. Taye Diggs made his feature film debut in How Stella Got her Groove Back. Taye made his show business debut in the ensemble cast of the five-time Tony Award winning play “Carousel.”

Steve Donner
Steve is a part owner of the Rochester Amerks, Rhino’s and other pro sports teams in Rochester. He was born and raised in Rochester’s 19th ward.

Kirk Douglas
The famous father actor of the Douglas family. Kirk worked in a steel mill here in the 1930’s.

Frederick Douglass
1817 – 1895 Certainly one of our more renowned citizens. He was one of the best known black antislavery spokesmen in the world. Douglass was an escaped slave himself who chose Rochester as the site to publish the antislavery newspaper “North Star”. He was a tireless lecturer in the abolitionist cause. Frederick Douglass is laid to rest in Mt. Hope Cemetery.

Pete Duel
An actor from Penfield. He appeared in many of the “Gidget” episodes among other things. Unfortunately committed suicide in the 1970’s

Walter F. Dukes
Born June 23, 1930 in Rochester, New York) and attended East High School, Walter was a center for the New York Knickerbockers (1955-56), Minneapolis Lakers (1956-57) and Detroit Pistons (1957-63). Dukes helped the Lakers win the 1956-57 NBA Western Division in his second season. While with the Pistons, he was named to the 1960 and 1961 NBA All-Star West Teams. Dukes averaged double figures in rebounds in six of his eight seasons in the NBA, and had career averages of 11.3 rebounds per game and 10.4 points per game.

George Eastman
1854 – 1932 Most people are probably aware that he was the founder of Eastman Kodak. What might not be so apparent was his generosity. The success of Kodak made him extremely wealthy. He spent very little on himself. He contributed, in money and land, to such institutions as the University of Rochester, Chamber of Commerce, Community Chest, Eastman School of Music and Theatre, and Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra among others. He was fond of saying “Rochester is well on its way to becoming the best place in which to live and raise children”

Joe English
Joe is another Rochester resident with ties to the Rock Music World. Joe was the drummer for Paul McCartney’s band “Wings” formed after the Beatles.

Garth Fagan
Garth has been called “a true original,” “a genuine leader,” and “one of the great reformers of American dance.” As another critic put it, “in the genealogy of modern dance, he’s started a whole new branch of the family tree.” Fagan formed his company here in 1970. He drew on many sources to forge his own dance language. He liked the sense of weight in modern dance, the torso-centered movement and energy of Afro-Caribbean, the speed and precision of ballet, and the rule breaking experimentation of the post-moderns. Simultaneously, he developed his own movement style and his own technique. From that beginning an internationally acclaimed dance company has developed. Garth won a Tony award for “Lion King” in 1998.

Rory Fitzpatrick
An Irondequoit native, Rory is a 6′ 2″ 210 lb. Defenseman playing in the NHL for the Buffalo Sabres.

Renee Fleming
Soprano Renee Fleming was born February 14, 1959 in Indiana, PA and raised in Rochester, NY. Renee Fleming is among the most widely admired American singers of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. She has a wide variety of roles in her repertoire, and works to maintain a balance between Mozart roles, such as the Countess in The Marriage of Figaro, with heavier ones such as Desdemona in Verdi’s Otello, in order to preserve both nuance and power in her voice. She is an especially noted Ellen Orford, Rusalka, Amelia in Simon Boccanegra, and Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier. She created the role of the Countess in Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles in 1991, that of Madame Tourvel in Conrad Susa’s Dangerous Liaisons in 1994, and Blanche in Andre Previn’s A Streetcar Named Desire in 1998, and won both the George London and the Richard Tucker Prizes.

Jerry Fogel
Jerry was born in Rochester January 17, 1936. He was the morning man on WBBF before Jack Palvino, and also went on to Hollywood where he landed roles in shows such as The Mothers-In-Law. and the White Shadow. After retiring for awhile he is back on the radio in Kansas City.

Kate Forster
Daughter of Robert, actress/producer (contributed by Rev. Dr. Lazlo Devaint)

Robert Forster
Robert was born here in July 1941. He also attended the University of Rochester and majored in psychology. Robert has gone on to be a prominent actor, producer, and director in many Hollywood productions.

Norm Frank
Norm Frank, age 74, lives on Vick Park B. He  has run over  900 marathons. This Rochester grandfather ran his first 26.2-mile race in Boston back in 1967. He currently is the world record holder for number of marathons run. He is quoted as saying his goal is to hit 1000 and then do a commercial with the energizer bunny. (contributed by Rich)

Mary Therese Friel
Mary Therese won the Miss USA Pageant in 1979. She was a student at St. John Fisher.

Doris Fuchs
Doris and her sister, Inge competed for the Rochester Turners and became teammates on the 1956 Olympic team for gymnastics.

Steve Gadd
Steve Gadd was born in Rochester, New York, April 9, 1945. He is another wonderful musician from our area. As a drummer, Steve has recorded with artists of all styles and genres, among them Eric Clapton, Paul Simon, Carly Simon, Phoebe Snow, Steely Dan, Ashford and Simpson, Aretha Franklin, Judy Collins, Bette Midler, James Brown, Joe Cocker, Nancy Wilson, Bob James, and Chick Corea.

Frank and Caroline Gannett
Frank came here from Elmira at the end of World War I. He acquired the city’s oldest daily newspaper, the “Union and Advertiser” and combined it with the “Evening Times”, resulting in the “Times Union”. This became the flagship for the still-growing Gannett newspaper chain. His wife Caroline Gannett served as the only woman on the State Board of Regents, 1947 – 1964. Caroline was also a director of the Gannett Company and the Gannett Newspaper foundation. Her generous gifts to such areas as educational, health, and cultural totaled several million dollars.

Harold “Shifty” Gears
1907 – 1974 “Shifty” was the best softball pitcher in the world. Two times in the 1930’s he led the Kodak Park team to world championships. Most people attribute his name “Shifty” to his ability to pitch a softball equally well with either arm. Some of his statistics are 866 wins out of 981 games pitched, including 373 shutouts and 61 no-hitters. He was also the first man elected to the Softball Association Hall of Fame in 1957.

Teddy Geiger
(born John Theodore “Teddy” Geiger II on September 16, 1988 in Buffalo, New York) is an American singer and songwriter. Geiger, who lives in the Rochester suburb of Pittsford, New York, began playing piano at 6 years old and guitar at 8

Genesee Brewing Company
The Genesee Brewery was founded in 1878 in Rochester, New York. The Genesee Brewing Company is America’s largest family-operated, regional brewery. While only being sold in half the country, it is ranked as the 7th largest brewery in the United States.

The Brewery is located at 445 St. Paul Street in downtown Rochester, New York. It has one and only one brewery in all of the United States. Hence its slogan One Brewery, One Great Taste. The Genesee Brewery distributes its products to 26 states and 2 Canadian Proviences


Brian Gionta
Born Jan 18, 1979 in Rochester, Brian  is a right winger of the 2003 Stanley Cup champion New Jersey Devils.

The Glazer Family
Another Rochester connection is  The Glazer family. The family has a long track record of profitable investments. They have at various times owned parts of Harley-Davidson, Tonka Toys, Houlihan’s Restaurants, several television stations, and the company that supplies McDonald’s with its grills and shake machines. The family, headed by patriarch Malcolm Glazer, also owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers football team.

Tom Golisano
An Irondequoit High School graduate, Tom is a very successful entrepreneur. Being the founder of the local company Paychex is one thing Tom is noted for. Additionally he has been a gubernatorial candidate and recently became the owner of the Buffalo Sabres in the National Hockey League.

Lou Gramm
A graduate of Gates-Chili high school, Lou Gramm (Grammatico) had local routes in the band Black Sheep. After that he went on to be the lead singer for the world famous band called Foreigner. The song Foreigner did called “Rev On the Red Line” refers to drag racing on Lake Ave.

Horace Greeley
Horace is the famous 19th Century newspaperman who worked for a while for Rochester papers.

Diana Gregory
Another actress with ties to the Rochester area is Diana Gregory. Diana was in a film entitled Visas and Virtue, which won an Academy Award in 1997 for Best Short Film (Live Action).

Peter Gruber aka “Rattlesnake Pete”
1858 – 1932 Best known as “Rattlesnake Pete”, he is another of Rochester’s colorful characters. Pete owned a saloon on Mill Street, behind the Reynolds Arcade. Actually it was as much a museum as a watering hole. He used to keep it crammed with all sorts of caged reptiles, mostly snakes. Pete was bitten at least 25 times but only once seriously. He would extract quantities of snake venom and promote it as a versatile medicine.

Pete Grymkowski

Pete Grymkowski was one of the largest bodybuilders of his era, competing at over 240 pounds.

He began his career by winning his hometown title of Mr. Rochester (New York) in 1968. He then went on to win the 1970 AAU Mr. Eastern America, the 1971 AAU Junior Mr. USA and the 1972 AAU Junior Mr. America. In 1977 Grymkowski started competing in the IFBB and took home the Heavy Weight titles at both the Mr. America and Mr. World.

After retiring from competition in 1979 Pete was one of a group of partners who bought and then transformed Gold’s Gym into the worldwide empire that it is today. He sold the gym chain in 1999 but continues to be active in many areas of sport and business while devoting the majority of time to his family life.

Mick Guzauski
Multi-Platinum engineer/mixer Mick Guzauski’s love for both music and technology called him when he was in high school. Growing up in Rochester, NY where there were no commercial studios, Mick put together his own studio in parents’ basement with equipment that he had begged, borrowed, built, repaired and modified. You could say Mick had one of the first home or project studios! “I met Chuck Mangione, an up and coming composer in Rochester and engineered his recordings as well as mixed his live sound. When Chuck signed with A&M records in 1975, he asked me if I’d like to go to Los Angeles with him to engineer his new album,” says Mick.

Sammy Hagar
A onetime Rochester resident, Sammy is a member of the Rock Music scene. He is probably best known as the former lead singer of the band Van Halen.

Walter Hagen
1892 – 1969 Walter learned to play golf at the Country Club of Rochester. He also worked there as a professional. He became one of the world’s best-known golfers in the 1920’s. He won the British Open 4 times and the PGA 5 times. He even once went to spring training with the Red Wings as a shortstop.

Florence Bertha Hamburger, Pharm.D.
(1891-1982) the first female graduate of the University of Buffalo School of Pharmacy in 1910, she came home and began working for the county of Monroe, and when Monroe Community Hospital opened in 1933, she became a pharmacist there, where she worked until her retirement. She became it’s first Chief Pharmacist. She died locally at the Rochester Episcopal Home in 1982.

Lester Harrison
Hall of Famer Les Harrison, served as owner, general manager and coach of the Rochester Royals. In 1951 he led them to the NBA championship.  In addition to the NBA championship in 1951, Les guided the Royals to consecutive National Basketball League championships in 1946 and 1947.

Davey Havok (David Marchand)
(born November 20, 1975, in Rochester, New York) more commonly known by the stage name Davey Havok, is the lead vocalist of the band AFI.

Len Hawley
Len was a musician in the Rochester area for over 75 years, performing with his “Len Hawley Band” at countless venues. He has worked with world-renowned musicians and was celebrated for his beautiful violin music, his wonderful voice, his conducting, and his showmanship.

Anthony Hecht
A famous poet,  who won a Pultizer Prize for book, The Hard Hours (1968), taught English at U of R in 1970s.

Audrey Hepburn
The famous actress Audrey Hepburn spent time in Rochester in the early 1990’s with long-time lover Robert Wolders a Dutch actor who lives in Irondequoit. He continues to have family connections to Rochester.

Phillip Seymour Hoffman
Philip was born in Fairport, NY in July of 1967 and is an  internationally known star of stage and screen. Considered by many to be the best character actor of our generation. Has starred with the likes of Robert DeNiro, Al Pacino, and Meg Ryan. On television he has appeared in Law and Order and The Yearling.

Lauren Holly
Lauren Holly was raised in Geneva, New York by her parents who are both professors. She has starred and played many  roles in both films and television. Formerly married to actor Jim Carrey.

Red Holzman
Red Holzman played for 8 seasons for the Rochester Royals. In 1951 he helped to lead that great Royals team  to the NBA championship over the New York Knicks. Later he went on to coach the Knicks to both of their two championships in 1970 and 1973. Red passed away on Friday, Nov. 13, 1998.

House of Guitars
The House of Guitars, located on Titus Avenue, is probably the best known business (musical instruments and CDs & records) in the Town of Irondequoit, made famous by wacky television commercials that were a staple of late-night local television in the 1980s and 1990s. Rather than a big-box retail operation, the H.O.G. consists of several buildings cobbled together in a maze-like fashion that lends a flea-market feel to excursions there. Much of their advertising features the slogan “The store that ate my brain!” and people have been known to use that phrase to refer to the business.

Brothers Armand and Bruce Schaubroeck began their business in 1964 by selling guitars out of the basement of their mother’s home.

Eddie “Son” House
Eddie James “Son” House, Jr. (March 21, 1902 – October 19, 1988) was an American blues singer and guitarist. House pioneered an innovative style featuring strong, repetitive rhythms, often played with the aid of slide guitar, and his singing often incorporated elements of southern gospel and spiritual music. Eddie lived in Rochester much of the time between the early 1940’s and the Mid 1970’s.

Many visiting blues musicians have made the pilgrimage to the old site on Greig street to collect a sample of dirt…including both Warren Haynes and Derek Trucks.

A Great article on Son House from 2004 in City Newspaper Seeking Son House

Jim Hvalack
Jim Hvalack managed the famous Chesterfield Kings from 1980-1985. The Chesterfield Kings have ties to Rochester and more information about them is located here: Chesterfield Kings Official Web Site

The Invictas
The Invictas started in 1960, just before The Rolling Stones began. They started as a street band, listening outside a neighbor’s window while another neighborhood band practiced. The sound of rock ‘n roll got their blood boiling. The original members were neighbors, Dave Hickey – drums, Bruce Hickey – guitar, Herb Gross- guitar and vocals. When the band first started, they were called the Furys.

Shirley Jackson
The late Shirley Jackson is the author of the classic short story, “The Lottery,” a dark, unforgettable tale of the unthinking and murderous customs of a small New England town. She is also the author of several American Gothic novels, such as We Have Always Lived in the Castle and The Haunting of Hill House. Her atmospheric stories explore themes of psychological turmoil, isolation, and the inequity of fate. Shirley graduated from Brighton High School.

Trenton Jackson
Trenton Jackson in 1961 while attending Franklin High School set the high school and world record for the 100 yd. sprint. He was on US Olympic track team in 1964 in Tokyo. His best 100m was 10.2 seconds.

Ferdinand Jay
Jay Advertising is an integrated advertising and marketing agency. Listed as a mid-sized agency headquartered in Rochester, New York, Jay Advertising also has offices in New York City, Detroit, and Los Angeles.

In 1973, Jay Advertising was founded by brothers Ferdinand Jay Smith III and Gregory W. Smith, both of whom were inducted into the Rochester Business Hall of Fame in 2009. The agency is noted for its national and regional consumer advertising and sales promotion expertise. In 1996, Jay Advertising was purchased by The Interpublic Group of Companies(IPG) and is a wholly owned subsidiary of IPG and is currently the retail arm of McCann Worldgroup.

Dr. Anthony L. Jordan
1896 – 1971 In the words of Dr. Jordan “The doors of doctors’ offices should be open to all, whether they have money or not”. Dr. Jordan came here from Guyana in 1932, and lived by these words. For nearly 40 years, Dr. Jordan treated our residents of the inner city, regardless of their ability to pay. The health facility in his name, carries on his spirit for all. Additional Bio Information

Ken Kaiser
Ken is a professional umpire in the American League.

Brian Kamm
Brian is another great golfer from our area who played on the PGA tour for a number of years. He is a graduate of Spencerport High School.

Garson Kanin
Garson was born in Rochester and wrote the screenplays for many popular movies, such as Adam’s Rib and Pat and Mike, starring Tracy and Hepburn.

Philip Kapleau
Phillip is a noted author and former roshi of the Rochester Zen Center.

Bob Keegan
Bob “Smiley” Keegan was a pitcher for the Chicago White Sox from 1953 – 1958.

Mimi Kennedy
A Rochester native, Mimi Kennedy has an acting career that includes roles in theatre, television and film. Some of her work has included roles on “Dharma and Gregg”, “3 Girls 3.” , ” She has guest starred on “Homicide,” “St. Elsewhere,” “Night Court” “The Twilight Zone,” “Knots Landing, among others. Some of her film credits include roles in “Buddy,” “Death Becomes Her,” “Immediate Family,”  “Chances Are” and “Pump Up the Volume.”

Mike Kircher
Mike “Wolfgang” Kircher was a pitcher for the Philadelphia Athletics in 1919 and the St. Louis Cardinals 1920 – 1921.

Bill Klem
Bill was a National League baseball umpire who is considered by many the greatest umpire of all time. Bill worked as an umpire from 1905 to 1940, was known as the “Old Arbitrator” and worked exclusively behind the plate for 16 years due to his ability of calling balls and strikes

Arthur Kornberg
One of the most important people of the 20th century lived here – Arthur graduated from U of R Med School (1941) – He was a Nobel Prize winner, as a research scientist at Stanford University, for his early work with DNA.

Dick Kraft
West High School, Rochester High school All-American SUNY College at Brockport Major: Health, Physical Education and Science First team All-American basketball player at Brockport; still holds the school record for points in a game (50), average in a season (28.8 ppg), and free throws made in a season (144); led team in scoring as a sophomore (20.9), junior (28.8) and senior (28.3); fifth on the all-time scoring list with 1,434 points in three seasons. Drafted and signed contract with the Detroit Pistons of the NBA; general manager of the Rochester Lancers and Rochester Flash soccer teams and Rochester Zeniths basketball team.

Lawrence Kudlow
Lawrence Kudlow is CEO of Kudlow & Co., LLC, an independent economic research and consulting firm in New York City. Mr. Kudlow is a nationally syndicated columnist. He is a Brain Trust columnist for Investor’s Business Daily. He is also the author of “American Abundance: The New Economic and Moral Prosperity,” published by Forbes in January 1998. He is economics commentator for CNBC and a regular guest on “Market Wrap”, “Street Signs”, “Squawk Box” and “Business Center.” He is a contributing editor of National Review magazine, as well as a columnist and economics editor for National Review Online. Mr. Kudlow was educated at the University of Rochester and Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

Scott LaFaro
Scott was born in Geneva and was a legendary Bassist who performed on an international circuit. Tragically died in an automobile accident between Canadaigua and Geneva.

Frank LaLoggia 
Director – The Lady in White, Lost Highway, Fear No Evil, and Mother.Frank is a horror/thriller director/producer/writer.

Andrew A. Langston
Andrew A. Langston is the founder, owner and general manager of 104 WDKX FM.
WDKX commenced broadcasting on April 6, 1974 at 5:30 AM and has been broadcasting 24 hours a day, seven days a week ever since. The station has the distinction of being under the same ownership since its inception. Keeping with its Urban Contemporary format, WDKX chose its call letters to honor Black heroes. (“W” stands for radio stations that are located east of the Mississippi River; “D” stands for Frederick Douglass; “K” stands for Martin Luther King, Jr.; and “X” stands for Malcom X.)

Joanie Laurer (Chyna)
Joan Marie Laurer (December 27, 1969 – April 20, 2016), also known by her ring name Chyna, was an American professional wrestler, glamour model, pornographic film actress, and bodybuilder.

Chyna first rose to prominence in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) in 1997, where she was billed as the “Ninth Wonder of the World” (André the Giant was already billed as the eighth). A founding member of the stable D-Generation X as the promotion’s first female enforcer, she held the WWF Intercontinental Championship (the only female performer to do so) twice and the WWF Women’s Championship once.[4] She was also the first woman to participate in the Royal Rumble and King of the Ring events, as well as to become number one contender to the WWF Championship.

Al Lewis
Al is probably best known from his role as “Grandpa” on the 1960’s television series “The Munsters”. He is currently active in politics and was born in Wayne county.

Gary Lewis
Gary Lewis, son of Jerry Lewis, formally of Gary Lewis and the Playboys currently lives in Henrietta.

Paul Lidel
Born in Rochester, and now living in Austin Texas, Paul was a member of 2 major 1980’s hair bands “Dirty Looks” and “Dangerous Toys“. Today he still gigs with Dangerous Toys and also has his own line of guitar instructional videos.

Kara Lindsay
Lindsay was born in Rochester, New York and attended Carnegie Mellon University, where she received a BFA in Acting/Musical Theatre. In 2009, Lindsay appeared as Laura in a musical-theatre production at the Paper Mill Playhouse of Little House on the Prairie with Melissa Gilbert as Ma. The play is an adaption of the children’s book of the same name by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Gilbert had originally played the role of Laura in the television series of the same name in the mid-1970s She originated the role of Katharine Plumber in Newsies, a Disney musical revamped for stage by Harvey Fierstein. The character was the fictional love interest of protagonist Jack Kelly, but Lindsay said she drew inspiration from the real-life investigative journalist Nellie Bly. Kara Lindsay continued her role when Newsies moved to Broadway and played her final performance in the show on February 2, 2014. In April 2014, Lindsay joined the 2nd North American Tour of Wicked in the role of Glinda.

John Lithgow
John was born into a theatrical family here in Rochester. Many of you know him from his role as Dick Solomon (a.k.a. the High Commander) on the television series “3rd Rock from the Sun”. Some of his film credits include: Memphis Belle, Footloose, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai, Blow Out, Twilight Zone: The Movie, All That Jazz, Raising Cain, The Manhattan Project, Harry and the Hendersons, Distant Thunder, At Play in the Fields of the Lord, Cliffhanger, A Good Man in Africa, and The Pelican Brief. He currently resides in Los Angeles.

Henry Lomb
(November 24, 1848 –  June 13, 1908) was a German-American optician who co-founded Bausch & Lomb (with John Jacob Bausch).

Lomb was born in Burghaun, Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel), Germany. He emigrated to the United States in 1849 and settled in Rochester, New York, where he worked as a cabinet-maker.

When his friend, John Jacob Bausch, the owner of a retail optical shop in Rochester, needed additional capital in 1854, he loaned him $60 on Bausch’s promise that, if the business ever grew to such an extent that he needed a partner, Lomb would be brought in. The business did grow and together they formed the Bausch & Lomb Company.

Lomb enlisted in the New York State Volunteers and fought in the American Civil War as sergeant, lieutenant and captain. When the war ended, he left the military and returned to the company.

In 1885, Lomb, along with Max Lowenthal, Ezra R. Andrews, Frank Ritter, William F. Peck and others, founded the Mechanics Institute (now Rochester Institute of Technology), whose mission was to offer “education for making a living.” Lomb served as chairman of the Institute Board until 1891, and continued to be a strong supporter of the school until his death.

Henry Lomb died suddenly in Pittsford, New York at the age of 59. He is buried in Mount Hope Cemetery in Rochester.

Keith Lyle
Pittsford Mendon High School till 1987 then moved to VA, Started for World Champion St. Louis Rams football team.

Mark Manetta
Mark is a Rochester native, and his musical experience covers a period of over twenty-five years in the music business as a teacher, performer, and studio musician. He has toured internationally and recorded with Chuck Mangione, Ben Vereen, the Rochester and Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestras, and many others. Mark has also performed on hundreds of records as well as many national themes for HBO, NBC, ABC, and local commercials. Mark Manetta  passed away on June 7th, 2005 from complications of diabetes. Its very very sad. He was too young (48)

Chuck Mangione
Chuck Mangione is a famous jazz  musician born here on November 29th 1940. He is famous for his gifted ability to play the the fluglehorn and trumpet. Also he is often recognized by the wearing of his “signature” hat. Having grown up in a very musically oriented family, Chuck still resides in Rochester today.

Gerlando “Jerre” Mangione
Famous Educator/Author “Mount Allegro” and many others. Uncle of Chuck and Gap.

Harry Mangurian
A Rochester native, Harry was the owner of the Boston Celtics during two of their National Basketball Association championship seasons. Currently residing in Florida, Harry has been involved in horse racing for more than 30 years, during which time he has bred more than 40 stakes winners

Joey Manuel
(boxer) Joey Manuel was a Lightweight champion and member of the Rochester Hall of Fame

he was born: 06-25-1904
and died: 07-13-1971 (Age:67)
His Alias: Fighting Pressman
He boxed in the lightweight division in the 1920’s and 1930’s and completed his career with a record of won 25 (KO 2) + lost 11 (KO 1) + drawn 12 = 48

Voice actress, raised in Rochester (contributed by Rev. Dr. Lazlo Devaint)

Charlie McMullen

Not only was Charlie a great ambassador for Rochester sports, but for education and community as well.

McMullen was a New York State cross-country champion in his senior year at Spencerport and went on to run for SUNY Agricultural and Technical College at Cobleskill. He then received a full athletic scholarship to the University of Missouri. He achieved NCAA All-American honors in cross country, indoor and outdoor track at Missouri where he ran a world-class 3:56 mile. In 1974, he was a member of the Indoor NCAA Championship Distance Medley Relay team. He continued to expand his interest in running, achieving a 2 hour-15 minute time in the marathon, becoming one of only 15 runners worldwide to achieve both a sub 4-minute mile and 2:15 marathon.

He returned to Rochester after college and became a top Masters runner, holding the Masters world record for the two-mile event. He taught at Frederick Douglass Middle School in Rochester for 18 years. He also was involved in Special Olympics and received its lifetime service award in 2002.

Eddie Meath
“Uncle Eddie” as he was affectionately known was a local television and radio personality. He worked tirelessly for many important local charities including “Toys for Tots” and “The Muscular Dystrophy”. Children were always his first priority.

The band, came here in 1983 and stayed long enough to record their first album, Kill ’em All!, in a studio on East Ave. Their album cover was photographed d by Gary Heard on the fourth floor of Village Gate Square on Goodman Street. Their recording engineer, was the late Gary Zefting who many of us knew as the long-time piano and keyboard salesman at Music Lovers. Metallica members who were here and are still alive: James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Kirk Hammett. The guitarist that actually came here with them to record, but was fired and replaced (while they were still here) was another famous soul, Dave Mustaine, who now fronts the heavy metal band Megadeth. Metallica has sold 100 million albums. (contributed by Rich)

Dani Michaeli
Writer for Sponge Bob Square Pants

Graduated from Brighton High School

Mitch Miller
Mitch could be described as the “bouncing ball maestro”. He was born here in 1911 and studied at the Eastman School to become an oboist.  He hosted his own television show named ” Sing Along with Mitch”, which was a popular participation form of music.

Willie “The Worm” Monroe
One of the greatest fighters out of Rochester, Willie began watching his idols battle in the Friday night fights during his aunt’s weekly fish fry in Crestview, Fla. He began his boxing career as an amateur in Rochester, N.Y., where he relocated after finishing high school in Florida. Not a puncher like Philadelphians Eugene “Cyclone” Hart and Bennie Briscoe, his fighting style, which combined head movement with swift hands and nimble feet, was perfected in Philadelphia.

John Mooney
A great student of Eddie “Son” House is Rochester native John Mooney – who is currently one of the great Blues players of our day, living the last decade in New Orleans.

Edward Mott Moore
(From Community)
From “Rochester History” by Dexter Perkins and Blake McKelvey, “On November 11, 1897, when starting off for a swing around the West, Susan B. Anthony stopped on her way to the station to attend the golden wedding reception of Dr. and Mrs. Edward Mott Moore. The good doctor’s conclusion, some forty years before, that Miss Anthony’s life ‘is a very good one,’ had been borne out.”

“A friend.” Edward attended his father’s school at Flushing and also the Renselaer Polytechnic Institute of Troy. He commenced the study of his profession in Rochester in 1833 with Dr. Anson Coleman, and was graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1836. He returned to Rochester (in 1840) and practiced until his death.

He was not only the leading physician and surgeon of Rochester but of Western NY. “To him more than to any man is due the inauguration and establishment of Rochester’s excellent park system, which was systematically started in 1888, and which today places the city in that respect, beside the finest and best in the country. Dr. Moore has been president of the Park Commission since its inception. And in the face of strong opposition has successfully guided the enterprise to its present condition.”  

Eddie Murphy
The famous actor/comedian Eddie Murphy, grew up in the New York City and Long Island area. He did spend a number of summers in our area though as a member of the “Fresh Air Kids” program.

Charles “The Natural” Murray
Charles “The Natural” Murray is a hometown boxer. Here are some of his statistics:
Height: 5′ 11″
Reach: 74″
Record: 40-4 (23 KOs)
Division: Junior Welterweight
Ranking: WBU – 8
Titles: Former NABF Junior Welterweight Champion Former IBF Junior Welterweight Champion

Allen H. Neuharth
Founder of USA Today, CEO of Gannett Corporation, and author of Confessions of a Son-of-a-bitch (which he wrote in a treehouse on a typewriter) lived here in the 1970s/80s

Frank Niger Sr. 
A former City of Rochester Councilman was also a Barber in the 16th Ward Area and was responsible for establishing and heading the first (and possibly the only) Barbers Union in NY State helping Barbers to secure reasonable wages and working conditions This Barbers Union was the pioneer Union for Barbers across the United States. Frank Sr. had a son Frank Niger Jr. who for years was head of the Veterans Administration in Monroe County – in the 70’s and 80’s. contributed by Rev. Anthony P. Niger II

Hugh O’Brian
Hugh O’Brian,  was best known from his  role on ABC-TV’s “Wyatt Earp” from 1955-1961. As played by the chisel-jawed O’Brian, this marshal of Dodge City, KS, was, according to the show’s droning theme song, “brave, courageous and bold.” He was born Hugh Krampe, Jr. in Rochester, NY, in 1925.

Ken O’Dea
Born in Lima, NY Ken was a Major league catcher for the Cubs, Giants, Cardinals, & Braves. He earned several World Series championships with his teams. His Debut was April 21, 1935 His final Game was August 6, 1946 He was born March 16, 1913 in Lima, NY and died December 17, 1985 in Lima, NY

Col. Patrick O’Rorke
Of the 140th New York Volunteer Infantry. Graduated First in the 2nd Class of 1861 at West Point (George Armstrong Custer finished last in the same class) Killed at the Battle of Gettysburg 2nd of July 1863 while leading the 140th at Little Round Top. Some People say that O’Rorke was marked as the future Commander of the Army of the United States if he had lived.

Danny Padilla
Dennis “Danny” Padilla (born April 3, 1951 in Rochester, New York) is an American bodybuilder nicknamed “The Giant Killer” because of his short stature and amazing ability to defeat much taller competitors.

Padilla started training when he was seven years old in Rochester, New York. He had been watching his older brother and cousin lift weights together in order to become stronger for their wrestling competitions. He acquired a rusty York barbell, as a hand-me-down from his brother Ray, and quickly set about to become Mr. America. It wasn’t long before he was absolutely smitten with the iron game and training a full seven days a week.

By the time Padilla was eighteen, he was ready to compete. He won the Mr. Rochester contest in 1970 while still in high school. It was his first show, and he took home the first place trophy. The only question in Padilla’s mind after that was, ”When is the next show?”
He entered a lot of other smaller competitions in the upstate New York area – Mr. Buffalo and Mr. Syracuse. After establishing himself in the local arena, he progressed to participating in both the Junior Mr. America and the Mr. America contests. He finished in the top twenty of both competitions.

Albert Paley
World-renowned master metal sculptor who has permanent installations in the Smithsonian, the New York State Senate Chamber, and the Victoria and Albert Museum (to name just a few of many famous international institutions exhibiting his works)

Jane Marsh Parker
(1836-1913) is a Rochester writer and social reformer. Her family lived next door to Frederick Douglass and there are notable stories bout Jane’s father helping the Douglass family acquire their home. Find these stories starting on page 64 or the section on Joseph Marsh.

Sam Patch
1807 – 1829 A legendary daredevil in early Rochester history. Sam is best known for the way he met his demise. On November 13th, 1829 he climbed to the top of a 20 foot platform near Brown’s Race and challenged the Genesee. His body was found the next spring and he is buried in Charlotte. His motto “Some things can be done as well as others”.

Gabe Paul
Gabe was born here on Jan. 4, 1910, and began his baseball career as a batboy. He later worked for local newspapers before he began his career as a baseball executive as publicity director and ticket manager for the Rochester Red Wings. Gabes’s career eventually took him to helping put together pennant-winning teams for the Cincinnati Reds and Yankees, including New York’s 1977 World Series winners. He also won two executive of the year awards in his career. Gabe died in April 1998.

Pete Pavia
The late Rochester resident, Pete was known for being one of the very finest NCAA referees. During his career, he was chosen many times to work “The Final Four”

Bill Paxson
A Rochester native, Bill is a pioneer in the television industry.The new PAX TV network began broadcasting August 31 on some cable stations across the U.S. with its slogan “A friend of the family”. Bill has also been instrumental in his work with TV Home Shopping.

Gregory Peck
Winner of an Academy Award for his role as Atticus Finch in the 1962 “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Peck has been a Hollywood icon since 1943, when he starred as an Irish priest in “The Keys to the Kingdom.” Peck’s roots pass through Western New York-his father was born in Rochester, and attended Niagara University, and eventually following Peck’s grandmother to California.

Herbie J. Pilato
Writer/Actor born in Rochester, New York, on Erie Street, near where now stands Frontier Field.  Best known for his companion books to the popular classic TV shows, “Bewitched” and “Kung Fu,” Herbie J is an accomplished actor who has appeared on TV’s “General Hospital,” “The Bold and the Beautiful,” and “The Golden Girls.  He will soon be seen on TV Land’s “Chasing Farrah” reality show.  Herbie J has appeared on hundreds of other TV and radio shows, including The E! True Hollywood Stroy, A&E’s Biography, and Entertainment Tonight.  And he has helped to produce various programs for the Screen Gems Network, the Sci-Fi Channel, The Learning Channel, and Bravo.

John Jay Pittman
The collection of the late John Jay Pittman was coinage unrivaled for quality, completeness, and breadth outside the Smithsonian or the British Museum. It eclipsed the magnitude of other headline-making collections: the Eliasberg, the Garret, and the King Farouk, especially when you consider this: the multi-million-dollar Pittman collection was assembled by a man of humble background and modest means.

The late J.J. Pittman was born in North Carolina in 1913, his mother a teacher and father a railroad worker. He was ten years old before he owned a new pair of shoes. At age thirteen, he was attending school and doing farm work full time. He had dreams of going to medical school, but a financial angel insisted he go to college for four years, then get a job so he could send a younger brother and sister through school. Pittman agreed, earned a degree in chemical engineering, and went to work for Kodak in Rochester, NY. He lived up to his word and paid for his sibling’s education.

Don Potter
Don Potter is an American musician and producer in Nashville, Tennessee. A longstanding producer for Wynonna Judd, he has become known as “the man who created the Judds’ sound”.

Potter has been singing, playing guitar, writing songs, and recording and producing music for forty years, and has performed with many notable artists. His musical career began playing acoustic guitar on the 1971 release of Chuck Mangione’s Friends and Love – a Chuck Mangione Concert.

His website gives emphasis to his ministry as a worship leader in churches, with the style of prophetic worship, seeking to be led by the Holy Spirit in every meeting.
As well as recording numerous CDs of his own music, he has written many articles and a book about worship called Facing the Wall.

Bill Pucko
Bill has 20 years of local sports casting experience. He is also a two-time winner of the Rochester Press and Radio Club’s Sportscaster of the Year Award, serves on the Hall of Fame committees for both the Rochester Red Wings and Rochester Americans, is a member of the JP Morgan Chase Basketball Tournament Hall of Fame and in 2006 was inducted onto the Frontier Field Walk of Fame.

From Ragu to Riches: In July 1892, a baby girl was born in the ancient city of Melfi in southern Italy.

She was called Assunta Gala. The whole family emigrated and Assunta arrived in New York on 15 May 1914. They went straight to “Little Italy” in New York State and settled in the city of Rochester. Assunta had worked in her brother’s restaurant for several years. In 1927, she married Giovanni Cantisano and started a family.

To earn a little extra money, Assunta began to make spaghetti sauce. She used
her mother’s old recipe, made the sauce in her kitchen and sold it locally. Soon everyone wanted the sauce and the Cantisanos moved the “kitchen” to a factory. They put the sauce into cans, called it “Ragu” and sold it throughout the northeastern states.

Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings lived in Rochester 1922-1928. She was a reporter for the Rochester Evening Journal Sept. 1922 – November 1922. From May 1926 to about May 1928, she wrote a housewife column for the Times-Union. In November, 1928, she and her husband moved to Florida. The Yearling won the 1938 Pulitzer.

Renée Roca
Renee Roca (born 1963) was an American figure skater. She competed in ice dance. With partner Donald Adair, she won the gold medal at the 1986 U.S. Figure Skating Championships. She later paired with former Russian skater Gorsha Sur and captured two more national titles. More recently, Roca has been a choreographer on the television show “Skating with Celebrities”. Born and raised in Rochester, she is the daughter of Dr. Roca, retired, of Brighton, N.Y. (contributed by barbieann)

Nathaniel Rochester
1752 – 1831 Our founding father. A Virginia native, Rochester and his partners made several trips to the Genesee country exploring for land suitable for homesteads and investments. In 1803 they purchased 100 acres, near the Genesee falls,  that eventually would be the nucleus of our city. Rochester was a community builder along with being active in banking, civic, religious and cultural affairs.

Mickey Rooney
Mickey, the famous film star, lived here in the 1920’s.

Ramon Santiago
(1943 – 2001)
Ramon was born September 4, 1943 in Rochester, New York. He began painting in 1961 while attending Mt. San Antonio College in California. Two years later he returned to Rochester to study art at Rochester Institute of Technology. He served with the United States Marine Corps from 1965-68. After his discharge from the service, Santiago’s professional art career began.

Audiences have been drawn to Santiago’s unmistakable vision, a figurative style with dramatic fantasy. Elegant portrayals of beautiful women, odd human-like creatures, symbolism, color and recurrent themes create his haunting and enigmatic images. Influenced by Chagall, Dali, Picasso, Pascin and Modigliani, Santiago preferred to work in mixed media and oil on canvas.

“My paintings are what dreams are made of,” said Santiago.

Charlie Schiano
Charlie was the main force in the forming of the Rochester Lancers soccer team from 1970 to 1981. The great local support for soccer here, can be traced to his early involvement.

George Alexander Selkirk
A major league baseball player from 1934 to 1942 with The New York Yankees. George was often known by his nickname of “Twinkletoes.” George at one time lived on Eastman Ave.

Rod Serling
Born in Syracuse New York, Rodman “Rod” Edward Serling (December 25, 1924 – June 28, 1975) was an American screenwriter, television producer, and narrator best known for his live television dramas of the 1950s and his science fiction anthology TV series, The Twilight Zone. Serling was active in politics, both on and off the screen and helped form television industry standards. He was known as the “angry young man” of Hollywood, clashing with television executives and sponsors over a wide range of issues including censorship, racism, and anti-war politics. His brother Robert J. Serling was also a writer, a novelist of fictional and non-fictional literature who survived his younger brother.

Serling suffered two severe heart attacks in 1975. He and his physicians decided that he should enter the Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, New York for coronary bypass surgery.

On May 3, 1975 Serling suffered a minor heart attack and was hospitalized. He spent two weeks at Tompkins County Community Hospital before being released. A second heart attack two weeks later forced doctors to agree that open heart surgery, though considered risky at the time, was in order. On June 28, 1975 Serling had a third, and fatal, heart attack during the ten-hour operation which ended his life. He was fifty years old at the time of his death. His funeral took place on July 2.

A memorial was held in Cornell University’s Sage Chapel on July 7, 1975. Speakers at the Memorial included his daughter, Anne, and the Reverend John F. Hayward.

Shane Shanahan
percussionist for world-renown Yo-Yo Ma

Hiram Sibley
1807 – 1888 Sibley moved from Mendon to Rochester in 1843 after winning the election of Monroe County Sheriff.  While here he became the leader of a group of enterprising men. They worked together consolidating small telegraph companies and formed what is known today as Western Union.

Mike Sigel
Mike Sigel (Irondequoit High School class of 72′) went on to become the greatest Pool player in the world and known as “The Poet of Pool” – coaching Paul Newman & Tom Cruise in the film “The Color of Money”.

Morrie Silver
1911 – 1974 “Morrie” was the savior of professional baseball in Rochester. When the St Louis Cardinals announced in 1956, their intention to abandon the Rochester franchise, Silver spearheaded a local fund drive, that in less than a week raised $294,000. The company he organized, Rochester Community Baseball Inc., was able to buy the Red Wings’ property. While serving as first president and later as general manager of the organization, Morrie collected a token salary of $ 1 a year. Red Wing Stadium was renamed in his honor in 1968.

Jay Silverheels
Jay is best known as “Tonto” from the “Lone Ranger” series. He attended high school here in the 1930’s.

Jeff Sluman
Jeff is another representative of the excellent golfers from our area. He was born in Rochester on September 11th, 1957. His PGA tour record includes a victory in the 1988 PGA Championship and another in the 1997 Tucson Chrysler Classic. In between these victories he also had eight second-place finishes.

Janice Marie “Jan” Smith
Speed Skater in the 1964 Winter Olympics in Innsbruck, Austria
Born on April 20, 1945 in Rochester, New York; lived in the 19th Ward

Joseph Smith
1805 – 1844  Joseph was the fonder of the Mormons and spent some of his life in Palmyra. He was the author of  the manuscript, the Book of Mormon, which was published in March 1830. On April 6, 1830, Joseph Smith organized The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and became its first president. Additional information Here (contributed by Rich)

Chuck Stogner
Chuck Stogner pitched for Kodak Park fast pitch softball between June 1963 – June 1973. He had 86 no hitters for different teams with 18 perfect games and over 15000 strike outs winng rochester fastpitch leagues 10 years and leading Kodak to numerorus tournaments with a record breaking game 23 innings with 51 strike outs and his opponent had 41 strike outs which was a world record in fast pitch a.s.a. sanction game. He ended up with 1242 wins and 224 loses.

Albert Stone
Albert chronicled life in Rochester in the early 1900’s, through his use of glass plate negatives. His collection not only includes the “news” of the day, but also captures everyday life of that bygone era. His entire remaining collection is being housed by the Rochester Museum and Science Center. Sometime in 2001 7,500 of these images will be made available online.

Margaret Woodbury Strong
1897 – 1969  Margaret Woodbury Strong was a collector of a different type. Most collectors of Americana treasure hand-made, colonial -era items. Margaret however gathered items that were made after the Industrial Revolution. Her collection defies definition. Within it are such things as prints and books, fancy doorknobs, buttons, glass, historical and art objects among others. The museum in her name proudly displays her collection.

The Tempests
Picture the scene: it’s 1958 in Rochester, New York. A young rockin’ guitar picker named Dave Casperson is handing out business cards to promote his band. They boast, ‘The Tempests – For the WILD SOUND!’ And they weren’t lyin’!

Robert Thomas
BobThomas, a Rochester native, and McQuaid High School player, was the field goal kicker for the Chicago Bears in the NFL. He played for them between 1975-1984. He had 128 lifetime field goals for the Bears.

Danny Thomas
Danny Thomas starred in Make Room For Daddy, one of most popular TV family comedies of the 1950s. (The show ran from 1953-64, but changed networks in 1957 and was titled The Danny Thomas Show for the rest of its run.)  Thomas also founded the St. Jude’s Research Hospital, which is dedicated to finding cures for catastrophic children’s diseases. The hospital opened in 1962 in Memphis, Tennessee. He is the father TV Star from “That Girl” Marlow Thomas who is married to talk show host Phil Donahue. Danny Thomas lived on Nassau Street in Rochester, NY as a child for a short time.  He belonged to the Lewis Street Center (a local neighborhood Boys and Girls Club). contributed by Rev. Anthony P. Niger II

Brad Thyroff
Brad graduated from Pittsford Mendon High School in 1992. Brad traveled on the tennis circuit, as a hitting partner, for several years with Jana Novotna, then Venus and Serena Williams.

Phillip Tomasso III
Phillip Tomasso III is a local author who has written 6 Rochester-based mystery novels.  (Pigeon Drop, due out June 2004; Adverse Impact, due out June 2003; Johnny Blade, July 2002; Third Ring, November 2001; Tenth House, January 2001; Mind Play, February 2000). Johnny Blade won Honorable Mention for the 2003 Bloody Dagger Awards. Tomasso also writes children’s books under the pen name, GRANT R. PHILIPS.  His first kid’s book, King Gauthier and the Little Dragon Slayer will be released November 2003.

Cathy Turner
An Olympic champion from Rochester, Cathy’s Olympic quest ended with two golds, a silver and bronze in short track speed skating at the 1992, 1994, and 1998 Games. Cathy believes to succeed you need to see it, believe it and be it.

Another Rochesterian in the music area is Tweet. She is still relatively new to the R&B scene, however she has signed with and is a Missy Elliott protégé.

Jeff Tyzik
Jeff has been conducting Pops programs with symphony orchestras throughout the America since 1983 and has been the Principal Pops Conductor for the Rochester Philharmonic orchestra since 1993. He uses his many and  diverse talents to present exciting pops concerts that encompass nearly  every musical style including: Classical, Baroque, Renaissance, Broadway, Jazz, Pop and Rhythm & Blues. Jeff  holds a Bachelor of Music and Masters of Music degrees from the Eastman School of Music and lives here with his wife Jill and daughter Jami.

Jeff Van Gundy
Jeff Van Gundy began his basketball coaching career in 1985-86, when he was head coach at McQuaid Jesuit High School in Rochester, N.Y. Van Gundy was a graduate assistant under Rick Pitino at Providence as the Friars made their Final Four run in 1986-87. Jeff joined the New York Knicks organization in 1989 as an assistant coach under Stu Jackson, Van Gundy remained as an assistant until he was named head coach on March 8, 1996, succeeding Don Nelson. In seven seasons, he finished his Knicks career as the third winningest head coach with a 248-172 (.590) overall record. In six playoff appearances, he registered a 37-32 record, including a trip to the 1999 NBA Finals.

Mark Walczak
Mark Walczak  was born: 4/26/1962, in Rochester, NY, and is a 1981 graduate of Greece Athena High School. Mark went on to the University of Arizona where he played football. Mark also played for the Indianapolis Colts, San Diego Chargers and Phoenix Cardinals as a Tight End in the NFL.

John Wallace
Born 2/9/74, John was a former star for the Greece Athena basketball team. He has since moved on to play for Syracuse University and into the NBA. His first pro team was the New York Knicks, and he is currently a member of the Toronto Raptors.

Abby Wambach
A rapidly rising star in women’s soccer, Abby is a native of Rochester. She was a leader of her soccer team while attending Our Lady of Mercy High School, and later at the University of Florida. Just recently she led the women’s team at the 2004 Olympic games in Athens to gold! The sky is the limit for Abby Wambach!

Bobby Wanzer
Bobby is another former member of the Rochester Royals basketball team. He was inducted into the NBA hall of fame in 1987 and is a current resident of the Rochester area.

William Warfield
William Warfield was destined to become one of the great vocal artists of our times. William was born in Arkansas but his family moved here when he was a small child. William attended the Eastman School of Music. His career took part in countless concerts, recitals, soloist appearances with symphony orchestras and even performances as a non-singing narrator. Among his many awards and recognitions, in March 1984 he was the winner of a Grammy Award in the “Spoken Word” category for his outstanding narration of Aaron Copeland’s A Lincoln Portrait accompanied by the Eastman Philharmonic Orchestra. William died in 2002 and is buried in Mt. Hope Cemetery.

Herb Washington
Herb was a world class sprinter who also played baseball for the Oakland A’s in 1974. Herb was hired by Charle’s O. Finley, in the unorthodox position of “designated runner”. Herb is a current resident of the area.

James Wedderburn
James is a longtime resident of Rochester, former teacher and coach in the city school district. In 1960 he won a bronze metal in the Rome Olympics. His medal was for the 4×400 meter relay. Mr. Wedderburn represented the West Indies.

Jeff Weston
Jeff was another local athlete with ties to the pros. After attending Notre Dame, he was drafted by Miami and played also for the New York Giants. Jeff currently has an acting career in Hollywood.

Dr. George Hoyt Whipple
1878 – 1976 Dr. Whipple is the man who established the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. He was a favorite among both staff and students, due to his recognition and nurturing of each student’s individuality. In 1934 Whipple shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine for his work in the field of blood regeneration.

JoJo White
JoJo was a legendary player on some of the legendary Boston Celtics basketball teams. In recent years he has made Rochester his home.

Jim Wiemer
Jim played professional hockey for many years both in the AHL and NHL. He mainly played for the Rochester Americans and the Boston Bruins. Jim is currently living in Rochester, and his wife works for the Fast Ferry.

Kristen Wiig
Born in Canandaigua, New York and brought up in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and Rochester, New York, Wiig attended the University of Arizona, majoring in Art. She later relocated to Los Angeles, where she broke into comedy as a member of the improvisational comedy troupe The Groundlings, and made her television debut in 2003. In 2005, Wiig joined the cast of Saturday Night Live and the following year, she co-starred in the Christmas comedy film Unaccompanied Minors After appearing in a series of supporting roles in comedy films such as Knocked UpAdventurelandWhip It!, and Paul, she co-starred in and wrote the screenplay for Bridesmaids, which was both critically and commercially successful.

Wiig has received six consecutive Emmy Awards nominations and has been nominated for an Annie Award for Voice Acting in a Feature Production for her work on Despicable Me 2. In 2012, Bridesmaids earned her a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actress – Musical or Comedy, as well as nominations for theAcademy Award and BAFTA for Best Original Screenplay and a SAG Award nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Cast.

Frances E. Willard
Frances was a supporter of women’s rights and a leader in the Temperance movement (largely to end drunken men abusing their wives and families). She was born in Churchville and lived in Rochester at times.

Wendy O. Williams
Wendy was a punk rocker as a member of the Plasmatics. She was evicted from the Brownies here in the 1950’s and was also a lifeguard at Ontario Beach Park the summer of 1969. Wendy took her own life in 1998.

Roland Williams
Not only has Roland Williams reached his goal of playing football in the NFL, he also is the proud owner of a ring earned in Super Bowl XXXIV. Roland is an East High graduate, who plays tight end for the World Champion St. Louis Rams. Roland credits his father Duane Williams, with both his athletic and academic success. Roland has also not forgotten the less fortunate. He has established the Roland Williams Youth Lifeline Foundation to assist the Rochester Area Community Foundation.

Joseph C. Wilson
1909 – 1971 Joseph Wilson was instrumental in leading the Haloid company into the multi-billion dollar corporation that we know today as Xerox. He was a tireless industrial leader, who made outstanding contributions to the cultural, intellectual and civic aspects of Rochester. One of his quotes “To set high goals, to have almost unattainable aspirations, to imbue people with the belief that they can be achieved–these are as important as the balance sheet, perhaps more so”

Nancy Woodhull
Nancy  Woodhull was managing editor of Gannett Rochester Newspapers in the 1970s, and the first Managing Editor/News at USA TODAY when it debuted in 1982. She was a former president of Gannett News Service and of Gannett New Media. Woodhull also was involved in the pursuit of equality for women, and not restricted to just the newspaper industry. Woodhull urged women to take their own actions to improve their situations in society. She died at home, in Pittsford, N.Y. in April 1997.

Brigham Young
Brigham Young lived in upstate NY from 1804 to 1832, the last three years of that in Mendon. He led the great Mormon migration of 1846-48 and oversaw the church’s establishment and growth in Utah. An early convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (also known as the Mormons), Young was named president of the church after the 1844 murder of its founder, Joseph Smith. There’s an antique store in Mendon, near the corner of Rte 64 and 251, with an old log book in it that shows Brigham Young signed for a fifty pound bag of flour in the 1800’s.