Step back in time

Explore the Spirit of the Pythodd

The city of Rochester has a vibrant musical history woven into its cultural fabric, and Jazzchester has taken you on a nostalgic walk throughout the decades, exploring the different jazz clubs that made Rochester’s night-life energetic and dynamic. Amidst these clubs, the Pythodd Room stands out as a beloved and well-remembered cultural touch-stone. It might not have hosted all the names that circulated through the Ridgecrest, but the Pythodd was arguably the heart and soul of the Third Ward during the middle of the twentieth century, holding its own in fame and renown as one of the best places in the city to escape to on a weekend night. Its history is deeply rooted in the surrounding community and it grew into a sort of refuge for the neighborhood and beyond; the Pythodd was a rare place where racial tensions eased and people from different walks of life came together to socialize and enjoy amazing music.

In this section of the exhibit, you’ll get a taste of what a night out at the Pythodd might have been like, learn about some of the musicians that played there, and experience its rich, yet tragic, story.

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