Rochester, Minnesota

Rochester is a city in southeast Minnesota. It is the administrative seat of Olmsted County. As of 2020, Rochester had a population of 121,395, making it the third most populous city in the state. Money Magazine ranked Rochester the 67th most liveable city in the United States in 2006.

Rochester is home to the Mayo Clinic, founded in 1889, one of the largest and most important clinics in the world.

Rochester has been a sister city to Moosburg an der Isar since 1981.


Culture and sights

Rochester attractions include:
The History Center & Museum is a history museum operated by the Olmsted County Historical Society. It also includes a historical library and genealogy center.
The Mayowood Mansion is the former home of Charles Horace Mayo. In 1965 the Mayo family donated it to the Olmsted County Historical Society. It was subsequently listed on the National Register of Historic Places and turned into a museum.
The Franciscan Sisters of Rochester are a Roman Catholic religious order founded by Alfred Moes in 1877. The Assisi Heights Motherhouse is located on a hilltop in Rochester and can be seen from many parts of the city.
The Rochester Art Center opened in 2004 and features a smaller selection of permanent and temporary exhibitions. It also has a garden and park area facing the Zumbro River.
Various buildings in Rochester are on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Avalon Hotel and the former Chateau Theater, now used by Barnes & Noble as a bookstore and café.



Geographical location
Rochester is located on the Zumbro River. South of the city, Interstate 90 is an important east-west road axis. The distance to the Twin Cities is around 130 kilometers. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city's area is 103.0 square kilometers, of which 0.4 square kilometers is water. Rochester does not have a natural lake.


City outline

The city of Rochester includes a total of six boroughs with a total of 22 residential areas (Apple Hill, Baihly Meadows, Baihly Woodlands, Country Club Manor-East, East Side, Emerald Hills, Folwell, Foxcroft, Glendale, Golfview, John Adams, John Marshall, Kutzky Park, Lincolnshire / Arbor Glen, Mayowood Hills, Mill Race, Northrop, Northwest, Pine Ridge, Shorewood, Southeast, Southern Hills, Viking Park).



Rochester has the continental climate typical of Minnesota. The summers are hot and humid, while the winters are cold with little rainfall. The maximum daily temperature is below zero degrees Celsius on an average of 83 days a year. Annual snowfall is 135 centimeters. Furthermore, Rochester is part of the outskirts of Tornado Alley.



Rochester was founded in 1854 by George Head, originally from Rochester, New York. After initially relocating to Wisconsin, he moved further west to Minnesota and founded the city he named after his hometown. The location on the railway line between St. Paul and Dubuque favored the growth of the city.

On August 21, 1883, a tornado devastated the city, killing 37 people. It was from this event that physician William Worrall Mayo took the initiative and, aided by donations raised by the Sisters of St. Francis, built a hospital. In 1889 he opened St. Mary's Hospital. In the years that followed, the Mayo Clinic (English Mayo Clinic), as it was called, continued to grow and gained worldwide importance.


Economy and Infrastructure

Rochester has a number of air-conditioned subways/skyways. They connect different buildings and offer protection against extreme weather conditions. In addition, the most important places can be reached by city bus. The city offers pedestrians and cyclists a relatively modern network of footpaths and cycle paths. Within the city alone, the cycle path network is around 37 kilometers long.

Rochester International Airport is located southwest of the city center. National hubs such as Minneapolis-Saint Paul Airport or Chicago Airport can be reached via it for national and international flight connections.

Rochester is accessible by automobile via the U.S. Accessible via Highways 14, 52 and 63, as well as Interstate 90 and Minnesota State Route 30.

Established businesses
Rochester's economy is dominated by the Mayo Clinic and its associated healthcare facilities. In addition to the main buildings in downtown, Mayo Clinic also includes the Saint Marys Hospital and the Rochester Methodist Hospital. A total of 4,000 doctors treat more than 315,000 inpatients and 1.21 million outpatients every year.

The computer industry has also settled here. IBM employs around 5,000 people in Rochester. The unemployment rate is 3.5 percent (as of August 2007).


Demographic data

As of the 2010 census, Rochester was home to 106,769 people in 43,025 households. The population density was 1040.6 people per square kilometer. Statistically, 2.42 people lived in each of the 43,025 households.

The racial makeup of the population was 82.0 percent White, 6.3 percent African American, 0.3 percent Native American, 6.8 percent Asian and 2.6 percent from other races; 2.6 percent descended from two or more ethnic groups. Regardless of ethnicity, 5.2 percent of the population was Hispanic or Latino.

24.8 percent of the population was under 18 years old, 62.5 percent were between 18 and 64 and 12.7 percent were 65 years or older. 51.6 percent of the population was female.

The median annual household income was $63,428. Per capita income was $32,948. 9.4 percent of the residents lived below the poverty line.


Sons and daughters of the town

Charles Horace Mayo (1865–1939), physician and co-founder of the Mayo Clinic
Cynthia Gooding (1924–1988), folk singer
Alexander M. Keith (1928–2020), lawyer, politician and Lieutenant Governor of Minnesota
John Culver (1932–2018), politician and congressman
Robert Angelici (born 1937), chemist
Michael Jensen (born 1939), economist
Laurinda Hope Spear (born 1950), architect and landscape designer
John E. Brandenburg (born 1953), plasma physicist
Eric Strobel (born 1958), ice hockey player and Olympic gold medalist
Sheree J Wilson (born 1958), actress
Joseph Coffey (born 1960), Catholic minister, Auxiliary Bishop in the US Military Ordinariat
Leah Thompson (born 1961), actress
Jim Johannson (1964–2018), ice hockey player and official
Shjon Podein (born 1968), ice hockey player
Dan Bakkedahl (born 1969), actor and comedian
Richard Ojeda (born 1970), politician
Doug Zmolek (born 1970), ice hockey player
Leilani Münter (born 1974), racing driver and environmental activist
Julie Anne Genter (born 1979), politician
John Pohl (born 1979), ice hockey player
Eric Butorac (born 1981), tennis player
Andy Canzanello (born 1981), ice hockey player
Colin Stuart (born 1982), ice hockey player
Sada Jacobson (born 1983), fencer
Joseph Kuipers (born 1984), cellist and music teacher
Mark Stuart (born 1984), ice hockey player
Bethanie Mattek-Sands (born 1985), tennis player
Alexander Meyer (born 1988), swimmer, world champion
Sydney Scotia (born 1997), actress