Rochester City Council proposes name change for Nathaniel Square, Carrol Park due to history of slave ownership

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — A new Rochester City Council proposal is requesting to change the names of at least two city parks due to the fact its namesakes enslaved people.

The proposal would change both Charles Carroll Park (Andrews Street) and Nathaniel Square (Alexander Street). The two spaces were named after two of the city’s founding fathers.

The resolution brought forward by council president Loretta Scott and councilmember Mitch Gruber also asks the city’s historian to evaluate and rename and other public places that are named after slaveholders.

[To view the proposal, scroll down to the last two pages]

"There are ample Rochestertains more deserving of a public place named after them than individuals like Charles Carroll," the proposal states.

Recently, Nathaniel Rochester had his name removed from a Rochester City School District middle school, which will now be called the Dr. Alice Holloway Young School of Excellence. It came after a petition on reached more than 100 signatures. Additionally, a statue of Rochester was defaced back in 2020, with his hands painted red, and the words "white supremacy" written on his back.

The current proposal would be voted on by the council next Tuesday.