Rochester Public Library

Department: Local History and Genealogy Division
115 South Ave.
Rochester, NY 14604
Phone: 585.428.7300
Christine Ridarsky - 585.428.8370 -

Rochester Public Library


The Rochester Public Library is a system of eleven libraries (the Central Library in downtown Rochester and ten urban neighborhood branches) serving as a vital resource to the Western New York region. Our libraries foster life-long learning, personal enrichment, and prosperous communities.

Rochester Public Library is a member of the Rochester Regional Library Council.


1964 Rochester Riot Photographs

This collection of images documents Rochester’s 1964 race riots, offering a vivid and revealing glimpse into Rochester’s, and the nation’s, past.

City Hall, Rochester, N.Y.

The City Hall Photo Lab Contemporary Collection contains images depicting official City events and programs and documenting public works services and projects in Rochester between 1982 and 2010.

Raging High Falls, Rochester, N.Y., in early 20th century

The City Hall Photo Lab Vintage Collection contains images selected from over 5,000 35mm slides made in 1984 from photographs, maps, renderings, and other graphics from Rochester’s past. Images include many aspects of City government through the years, plus general views of Rochester from the 1760’s through the 1960’s.

Looking southwest from Exposition Park toward Dewey Avenue and the buildings of the City of Rochester's Department of Public Works. In the foreground, crowds surround the horse show arena. Behind the grandstand, cars fill the parking area. The larger white tent in the center has a sign reading "Tea Tent".

This collection consists of images relating to Rochester selected from the Archives’ full collection of 10,000 glass plate negatives dated 1865-1920.

	 Rochester Public Library, Rundel Memorial Building, construction workers laboring on new balustrade

This collection includes images relating to Rochester from the years 1920 to around 1960 selected from over 50,000 prints, safety negatives, nitrate negatives, and lantern slides.

Rochester NY City Directories

This collection includes city directories from Rochester, NY, with information about the people and businesses within the city. Includes three maps of the city of Rochester.

Map of the City of Rochester

This collection contains regional maps dating from 1827 to the 1980’s. Both individual maps and bound maps, such as plat maps, are included.

Flight of the Hyperion

The Rochester Public Library Local History Division Picture File Collection contains diverse images relating to Rochester’s history. The collection includes many portraits of well-known Rochesterians, in addition to images of historic buildings, city parks and other recreational facilities, Rochester industries, etc.

Deininger Bros. Bakery, advertising card

This collection consists of images of ephemera taken from the vertical file collection ("pamphlet file") of the Rochester Public Library's Local History & Genealogy Division.

Greetings from Rochester, New York

This collection contains postcards showing scenes from Rochester and the surrounding area since the early 20th century.