Rogers Beach Park is one of 18 street-end beaches acquired by the Chicago Park District from the City of Chicago in 1959. By that time, the city's Bureau of Parks and Recreation had been operating such small municipal beaches since at least 1921. Many of these beaches were located in the Rogers Park neighborhood, where a growing population of apartment dwellers lacked easy access to recreational opportunities. In contrast to the city's larger municipal beaches, the street-end beaches, though manned by lifeguards, had no changing rooms or other facilities.
Rogers Avenue and the adjacent beach take their names from Phillip Rogers (1812-1856), the first white settler in the area. Rogers, an Irish immigrant, arrived from New York in 1836 and soon became a successful truck farmer, amassing over 1,600 acres of land before he died. His son-in-law, Patrick L. Touhy (1839-1911), later subdivided some of Rogers' land and named the town Rogers Park in his honor.