Who We Are Here are the people who are a part of the Main Street Rogers Organization and Community. From our Board of Directors to the many Volunteers who make Main Street Rogers work for you.
Where We Began The history of the City of Rogers begins at the railroad, which blazed a trail into the area in 1881, following the path of the historic Old Wire Road.
Identity Through History When one imagines that which makes up a town's identity, the visual images that most often appear are those of the historic part of town. Rogers is no exception.
Economic Success By encouraging building rehabilitation and preservation, and promoting economic development, our downtown has become the focal point of a variety of hometown events
Where We Began
The history of the City of Rogers begins at the railroad, which blazed a trail into the area in 1881, following the path of the historic Old Wire Road. The route of the Frisco Railroad line, which traveled from St. Louis to San Francisco, established the business district of a community that in gratitude, took the sir name of Captain C.W. Rogers, as its own. At that time the Vice-president and General Manager of the line, Captain Rogers, was responsible for the decision to route the tracks through the area, opening a prosperous gateway for trade and passenger service.
B.F. Sikes, who owned the original 160 acres which became the town site of Rogers, gave the railroad the land required for right-of-way and the farmers adjoining the site contributed $600 toward the cause. Construction soon followed, and the first passenger train reached Rogers in May of 1881. Incorporation took place the next month, in June of the same year and the town sprang into existence.
Commemorating the historic significance of the railroad is the Frisco Caboose, located at the corner of First and Walnut, near the tracks which are still used today by the Arkansas & Missouri Railroad. Given to the City in 1981 by the Frisco Railroad, the caboose stands as a permanent reminder of our railroad roots, and is open to the public during the summer months.
Identity Through History
When one imagines that which makes up a town's identity, the visual images that most often appear are those of the historic part of town. Rogers is no exception. Maintaining that sense of identity is key to the Main Street program.
In 1988, a large portion of downtown was dedicated as the Walnut Street National Historic District. This area was expanded in 1993. In addition, 23 structures are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. This commitment to our history ties us permanently to our past and plots a course for the future.
The pride of Rogers business people can be readily seen through their continuing work in building restoration. Main Street Rogers has contributed by working to obtain Model Business Grants, providing Improvement Incentive Grants and other resource materials.
Many facade renovations have been completed as well as three fine examples of interior restoration: the J.E. Applegate Building, a 1905 apothecary which is now Poor Richard's Gifts & Confectionery; the W.B. Felker Building, originally opened as Bank of Rogers in 1905, and now home to the Daisy Airgun Museum; and The Victory Theater, 1927, which after many years of neglect was purchased and renovated by the Rogers Little Theater and reopened as that organization's home stage.
An ongoing process, building renovation investments continue and have contributed greatly to the economic vitality of Historic Downtown Rogers.
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