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Rochester Borough

Beaver County, Pennsylvania

Rochester Borough Hall is located at 350 Adams Street, Rochester PA 15074.
Phone: 724‑775‑1200.

Beginnings [1]

Rochester was incorporated as a borough by an Act of Assembly, approved March 20, 1849; and in 1871 the town council adopted a resolution that the borough should take advantage of the Act of Assembly, passed April 3, 1851. This action was confirmed by the court on September 7, 1871. From that time the borough has been under the general borough law of the State.

There was a village of Mingo Indians on the present site of Rochester, probably near the point where the Cleveland & Pittsburg Railroad bridge crosses Beaver Creek. This was known in the latter part of the eighteenth century as "Logan's Town," because the famous chief, Logan, had his lodge here at that time. The mouth of the Big Beaver was an important rendezvous of the various Indian tribes, both in peace and war. Many Indian relics have been found there, and bones have been dug from what were doubtless graves of the vanished red men.

Early after the opening of the northern side of the Ohio to settlement of the whites the natural advantages of the spot began to attract attention; but for some years the principal part of the immigration went farther up the stream to the Falls of the Beaver or to the opposite side, where the village of Sharon grew into being. Here and there, however, an occasional settler located his cabin and clearing in the immediate vicinity of, or on, what is now a part of Rochester borough. The earliest of these settlers is not now known, but in 1799 the Rev. Francis Reno, who is mentioned in our chapter on the religious history of the county, an Episcopal clergyman from Washington County, Pa., and earlier from Virginia, built a log cabin just below the spot on which the Passavant Memorial Hospital buildings now stand. An early date is assigned, though no year can be fixed, for a log cabin which was built on the site of the present residence of the heirs of Atlas L. Lacock; and for one at the mouth of Lacock's Run, which was occupied by a woman named Atkinson. Near the river bank, immediately below where the National Glass Works now stand, was the log house owned by Reese Nannah, father of Jesse Nannah, and in which Jesse was born. In the same neighborhood stood the cabin of Jonathan Leet, son of William Leet, whose wife was Susannah Lacock. Another cabin stood at what is now the corner of New York Street and Rochester Avenue, the home of a man named Earl Merriman, who sold his land in 1817 to Lewis Reno. Samuel Bell, a very early settler, built a stone house on the site of the Ovid Pinney residence, now the property of John J. Hoffman. Two other log cabins are known to have been built at a very early period, one near the mouth of the Beaver, in which lived a ferryman named Benjamin Pounds, and one farther up, beyond McKinley's Run, the home of a man named Wehr.

  1. Weyand, J., and Reed, W. I., Beaver County Centennial Directory, 1876, Beaver Printing Company, Beaver PA