The Rockford area was originally home to Native American people of various tribes.  The first settlers to reach the area came in the 1830’s and settled on the banks of the Rock River .  The area developed quickly, with the first official buildings coming to the town just before its formal incorporation as a village which took place before 1840.  By the middle of the nineteenth century, Rockford had been officially incorporated as a town.

Just after it was incorporated, the railroad came to the area, further increasing development.  Development in the area included rapid growth in the areas of media and industry.  By the end of the nineteenth century, the city had established a newspaper, a women’s college (which eventually became Rockford College ), and a library.  Both furniture and agricultural machinery became big industries in the area and lasted until the middle of the twentieth century.

Although Rockford was an established town, many people throughout the nation didn’t know anything about it because it is overshadowed by nearby Chicago .   At the end of the twentieth century, a major Hollywood motion picture about the area’s mid-twentieth century all-female baseball team brought national attention to the area.   See http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104694/ for more information.