Statement of Significance (as of designation - May 30, 1974):
Chartered in 1901, this institute was founded by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. to conduct research into the treatment and prevention of disease. It was the first of his great philanthropic foundations. With it, Rockefeller sought not simply to relieve the needy, but to "attack misery through the weapon of research." "Don't be in a hurry to produce anything practical," he advised its staff. "If you don't. the next fellow will. You, here, explore and dream." In 1954 the institute assumed the status of a graduate university and in 1965 it was named the Rockefeller University. Founder's Hall, the first laboratory, was opened in 1906 and still serves its original function.