#5: History and High Falls

Photo by Mike Kraus

Photo by Mike Kraus

“What I like most about Rochester is the Genesee River downtown. Starting at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, which was the old Lehigh Valley Railroad station, it leads to lots of interesting sites. There’s the arches of the Court Street bridge that lead to the monumental Rundel Memorial Library. The unique Broad Street Bridge tells the history of the city, as it used to be an aqueduct over the Genesee for barges on the Erie Canal. The bridge was repurposed for a subway system and automobile traffic when the canal was rerouted. Then there’s the iconic Mercury Statue on top of the Aqueduct Building inspiring the area with commercial prosperity (pictured at left).

“A little ways down is the Main Street bridge, which used to be covered in buildings, like the famous Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy, before they were removed in the 1960s. Further north are the old manufacturing structures squeezed between the Genesee and Water Street. This all leads to the High Falls. This 96-ft. tall waterfall is the genesis of Rochester that powered the city’s early industrial development. And from the Pont de Rennes Bridge over the gorge, you can see all the successes and failures, the scars and perfection the city has experienced over the past 200+ years.”

—Mike Kraus, Historic Four Corners of Penfield 

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