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Rochester International Airport getting renamed to honor Frederick Douglass

The Rochester International Airport is getting a new name. But don’t worry, it will be plenty recognizable.

On Tuesday, the Monroe County Legislature approved renaming the Greater Rochester International Airport after abolitionist Frederick Douglass.

In addition to renaming the location, educational materials about Douglass’ legacy will be placed in the airport.


“To know where we are going, we must first remember where we have been,” the legislation reads. “This community’s image speaks volumes – not just about our history, but also the direction we are headed. There is potentially no greater symbol of our image than our airport, which serves as the front door to our community.”

Douglass’ descendants were overjoyed by the news.

“By honoring this particular historical figure in this way, I believe that Rochester is saying something important about itself: it wants to be a national center for individual rights and justice,” according to Kenneth Morris, Douglass’ great-great-great grandson and president of Fredrick Douglass Family Initiatives.

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