Rochester, Washington

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Rochester is a census-designated place (CDP) in Thurston County, Washington, United States. Founded in 1852, the 2000 census recorded the population at 1,829. According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.3 square miles (6.0 square kilometers), all of it land.



Rochester was founded in 1852 by Samuel James. Robert Paton who opened the first market in 1889 opened the first lumber mill in the early 1880s, which continued to operate for over 50 years, and it, which is still in operation today. Robert Hunt also helped promote Rochester's growth with the addition of the Northern Pacific Railroad, which connected the community with Grays Harbor. Hunt's Grade, a road built to pay tribute to Robert Hunt, can still be seen from the railway today.

After the lumber industry died down, Rochester became a large producer of strawberries.[citation needed] Rochester today is a small bedroom community, with many residents commuting to work in surrounding communities including Olympia, Washington and Chehalis, Washington. Rochester, Washington was named after Rochester, Michigan.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 1,829 people, 647 households, and 505 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 790.2 people per square mile (305.7/km²). There were 677 housing units at an average density of 292.5/sq mi (113.2/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 88.41% White, 0.16% African American, 1.69% Native American, 0.93% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, 5.52% from other races, and 3.17% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10.39% of the population. 12.8% were of German, 11.5% Irish, 7.8% American, 7.5% Norwegian, 5.6% English and 5.4% Scottish ancestry according to Census 2000.

There were 647 households out of which 41.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.4% were married couples living together, 9.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.9% were non-families. 17.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.83 and the average family size was 3.14.

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