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By the mid-19th century, as the center of the wheat-processing industry moved west with population and agriculture, the city became home to an expanding nursery business, giving rise to the city's second nickname, the "Flower City." Nurseries ringed the city, the most famous of which was started in 1840 by immigrants Georg Ellwanger from Germany and Patrick Barry from Ireland.

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In 1950, the Census Bureau reported Rochester's population as 97.6% white and 2.3% black.

With industrial restructuring in the later 20th century, and the decline of industry and jobs in the area, by 2010, the city's population had declined to 210,565, although the metropolitan area was considerably larger.

It was the base of enterprises Bond Clothing Stores, Fashion Park Clothes, Hickey Freeman, and Stein-Bloch & Co.

The carriage maker James Cunningham and Sons founded a pioneer automobile company – Cunningham.

In the early 20th century, after the advent of railroads, the presence of the canal in the center city was an obstacle; it was re-routed south of Rochester.

By 1830, Rochester's population was 9,200 and in 1834, it was re-chartered as a city.

The population reached 62,386 in 1870, 162,608 in 1900 and 295,750 in 1920.

By 1950, the population had reached a high of 332,488.

This article is about the city of Rochester in Monroe County.

For the town in Ulster County, see Rochester, Ulster County, New York.

Anthony Amendment because of her work toward its passage, which she did not live to see.