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Office of the City Historian

Preserving and Interpreting Rochester's past

As required by New York State law since 1919, the City Historian is responsible for preserving and interpreting the city’s past. Duties fall into four categories: 1) research and writing, 2) teaching and public presentations, 3) historical preservation (documents, artifacts, and buildings), and 4) organization, advocacy, and tourism promotion.

The Office of the City Historian is located within the Local History & Genealogy Division of the Central Library of Rochester & Monroe County. The office is staffed by the City Historian and Deputy City Historian.

City Historian  

A photo of a smiling woman with short hair and a blue sweater

Christine L. Ridarsky has served as City Historian since October 2008 and Director of Historical Services for the Rochester Public Library since January 2012. She has a B.A.S. in Journalism & Mass Communication and Political Science from Kent State University, an M.A. in American History from the State University of New York, College at Brockport, and is ABD toward a Ph.D. in American History at the University of Rochester. She is co-editor of the Rochester History journal and co-editor of Susan B. Anthony and the Struggle for Equal Rights (University of Rochester Press, 2012).

Ridarsky has more than 20 years of experience in public history and archives, having served as Regional Archivist for the New York State Archives Documentary Heritage Program from 2002 to 2004 and as an archival consultant and professional historian since then. She has also taught history and writing courses at the University of Rochester and SUNY Brockport. 

Ridarsky serves as a trustee and past president of the Association of Public Historians of New York State, the professional organization that represents the state’s 1,600+ government-appointed historians, and a member and past chair of the National Council on Public History’s Government Historians Committee.

Contact us  

Office of the City Historian

115 South Ave.
Rochester, NY 14604-1896
Phone: (585) 428-8095