There are thirty-eight towns named “Rochester” scattered throughout the United States, almost one for every state. Rochester, Vermont, became incorporated in 1781.
Nestled in a remote area of the Green Mountains, Rochester has the largest amount of land in Windsor County, with over 36,000 acres. Many of those acres consist of The Green Mountain National Forest and the Riley Bostwick Wildlife Management Area. The White River flows alongside the village, making its way to the Connecticut River. The surrounding mountains extend from the rocky ledges of Mt. Horrid (2,900 ft.) and the Long Trail in the west to Mt. Cushman (2,750 ft.) on its easterly border. Philadelphia Peak at 3,160 feet is the highest peak in the area. A plethora of hiking and biking trails, along with its proximity to several ski mountains, make this town a mecca for outdoor activities.
Despite a population of just 1,171, Rochester boasts a thriving business and cultural community. Once an old railroad, farming, and mining community, it has successfully converted to the digital age with several technological and publishing companies now making a home here. Arts and culture thrive in Rochester with galleries, festivals, theatre productions, concerts, and lectures. Many residents are artists, writers, and professors.
Rochester once had as many as fifteen one-room schoolhouses at one time, but now has a single Rochester School, grades K-12, that also serves the surrounding towns of Hancock, Granville, and Stockbridge. The Rochester Public Library, founded in 1801, has a wide selection of books, videos, and computers for public use.