Two Illinois men by the name of George Ames and Joel Florida became the first settlers in an unnamed patch of land in 1855. Another settler by the name of Cyrus C. Jenks also arrived at the site at about the same time. He was from Rockford Illinois. After a short debate on what to name the township, the group finally settled on Jenk’s suggestion which was Rockford. The town was organized in 1858 and the city platted in the spring of 1857 while incorporation as a village achieved on November 21, 1881.