|History of the Campuses and Buildings of the University of Rochester|
|United States Hotel||Prince Street Campus||Eastman School of Music||Medical Center||River Campus||Mid-Campus||South Campus||Mt. Hope Campus||Graduate, Family and Veteran Housing||Central Utilities||Other Off-Site Buildings|
| Enrollment | Tuition | History of Campus Technology | History of the Department of History |
The University of Rochester was founded in 1850 after an abortive attempt to move Madison College to Rochester. The first home of the University was the former United States Hotel on Buffalo street (now West Main street). The University accepted a donation of land from Azariah Boody between Alexander and Goodman Streets for a new campus. Anderson Hall opened in 1861, the first of several buildings on what became known as the Prince Street Campus. Women were first admitted as regular students in 1900, and the College for Men moved to the new River Campus in October 1930, followed by the College for Women in October 1955. The Memorial Art Gallery opened in October 1913 and is the only University entity remaining on that campus.
The Eastman School of Music was donated to the University by George Eastman and opened in October 1921.
The University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry opened in 1925 and Strong Memorial Hospital opened in 1926. The University bought the adjacent Rochester Municipal Hospital in 1963.
The University suspended classes for a short period in 1918 due to the influenza pandemic. The Civil War and World Wars I and II also impacted the University's enrollment and operations. And then there was Covid...
|University Timeline||Posters from the Time of Covid|
This page contains information about the entire University. Links above show separate campuses.
1846 An act to incorporate the University of Rochester. May 8, 1846.
This attempt was unsuccessful.
1850 Report to the Board of trustees of the University of Rochester, on the plan of instruction to be pursued in the collegiate department. Presented September 16, 1850
1851 The Annunciator 2(1) (January 1, 1851)
1851 University of Rochester Charter, February 14, 1851. The University had been granted a provisional charter on January 31, 1850.
- Location," Rochester
Daily Democrat, May 10, 1853, Page 2.
The Trustees will receive proposals for a site for the University buildings to-day, at the Library rooms.
of Rochester - Location of Site for the Structures," Rochester
Daily Advertiser, May 12, 1853, Page 2.
1853 "Site for the University Buildings," Rochester Daily Advertiser, July 15, 1853, Page 2.
Act for the relief of the University of Rochester. March 19,
State to pay UR $12,500 in 1857 and the same amount in 1858, subject to an equal amount being raised by subscription.
1876 The work and aims of the University of Rochester. An address delivered on Commencement day, June 28, 1876, by Martin Brewer Anderson
1880 The Charter of the University of Rochester and other documents explanatory of the Organization of the University
History of the City of Rochester: With Illustrations and Biographical
Sketches of Some of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers, by William
Page 536: The progress of the new institution was so sudden and so wonderful that Ralph Waldo Emerson, according to Mr. Wilder, used it as an illustration of Yankee enterprise — saying that a landlord in Rochester had an old hotel which he thought would rent for more as a university ; so he put in a few books, sent for a coach-load of professors, bought some philosophic apparatus, and by the time green peas were ripe, had graduated quite a large class of students.
Outline History of the University of Rochester
1889 The American College in Relation to Liberal Education, Inaugural Address of President David Jayne Hill, June 19, 1889.
Cost Too Much," Democrat and Chronicle, June 6, 1890, Page
Why Rochester University Trustees Object to Co-Education.
1890 Martin Brewer Anderson: An Appreciation, by Henry Clay Vedder
Annual Report of the Regents of the University of the State of New
York, January 30, 1891
Pages 502-506: Memoir of Martin Brewer Anderson, by Pres. James M. Taylor, Vassar College
1892 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Rochester, Monroe County, New York. Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3 |
1895 Papers and Addresses of Martin B. Anderson, LL. D., Volume 1, edited by William C. Morey | Volume 2 |
1895 Martin B. Anderson, LL. D.: A Biography, by Asahel Clark Kendrick, assisted by Florence Kendrick Cooper
College Jubilee," New York Tribune, May 27, 1900, Page 6.
The University of Rochester will celebrate its semi-centennial.
1900 Addresses at the Semi-centennial Anniversary of the Founding of the University of Rochester, June Tenth to Fourteenth, 1900
1900 The inauguration of Rush Rhees, LL. D., as president of the University of Rochester. October 11, 1900
1900 Histories of the Departments of Instruction of the University of Rochester during the First Fifty Years 1850-1900 (note this is a reformatted version done by students)
City of Rochester Illustrated
University of Rochester
1910 The University of Rochester : buildings and grounds
education in the United States and Canada; a report to the Carnegie
Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching by Abraham Flexner
Pages 180-181: Chapter XIV The Medical Education of the Negro
1913 An American Scholar: A Tribute to Asahel Clark Kendrick, 1809-1895, by his daughter Florence Hopkins Kendrick Cooper | also here |
1919 "Henry A. Strong, Long Business Associates of George Eastman, Dead in his Eighty-First Year," Democrat and Chronicle, July 27, 1919, page 38.
of the President of the University of Rochester, June 1, 1920.
Pages 12-14: About four months ago it was brought to my attention that competent judges of the needs of medical education in the United States were of the opinion that our city offers a very desirable location for a medical school of the highest order. This idea caused me great surprise. It was not the first time that the possibility of a medical school connected with the University had been suggested to me. But my reply had always been: Medical education is the costliest form of professional training, and The University of Rochester is not interested in undertaking such work without resources sufficient to make that work unquestionably of the first class. I had no idea that Rochester could command adequate resources. Furthermore, I had the opinion that the trouble with medical education in this country was not that it had too few medical schools, but too many.
This opinion was derived from a remarkable study of medical education in the United States and Canada made by Dr. Abraham Flexner, and published in 1910. On consulting him about the proposal I found him to be of the opinion that there is ample room for another medical school of the highest order and that Rochester presents in many ways an ideal location for such a school; and in the further development of the project he has given invaluable counsel and encouragement. The value of such counsel and encouragement can be best appreciated by those who know the unique position he has attained as one of the best informed men on the present condition and needs of medical education throughout the world.
When the project was brought to the attention of our farsighted and marvelously generous friend, Mr. George Eastman, he recognized at once the possibility of accomplishing something great, not only for medical education in general, but also for the good of Rochester as a community, because of the stimulus and assistance which such a school will inevitably give to the practice of medicine in our city and the work of our hospitals and of all the agencies working for the public health.
This advantage is readily apparent from the fact that an essential feature of the equipment will be a teaching hospital of about 250 beds, owned by the University and supported by a special endowment, which will help supply the need for increased hospital facilities in our city.
Furthermore the scientific laboratories for anatomy, physiology and pathology devoted not only to instruction in those subjects but to research for the advancement of knowledge in those sciences, will put Rochester and its medical and dental professions and hospitals in the most favored class in the matter of dealing with problems of public health.
Early in the consideration of this matter, Mr. Eastman saw that if co-operation with the Rochester Dental Dispensary could be secured, that great institution, by enlarging its scope to provide for treatment of adults in addition to its work for children, and on much the same basis, would furnish clinical facilities for dental education of the same order as that proposed for medicine; and the project was enlarged so as to combine with the projected school for physicians and surgeons a dental school of the highest standard.
The project could not be considered at all, however, except on the basis of large resources. It is with wonder, as well as with pride and gratitude, that I welcome the privilege given to me of announcing that in addition to the effective co-operation of the Rochester Dental Dispensary, which with its endowment of $1,000,000, represents a gift by Mr. Eastman of $1,500,000, he has agreed to give the University of Rochester $4,000,000 for this great enterprise, and that the General Education Board, which dispenses Mr. John D. Rockefeller's gifts for education, has agreed to contribute $5,000,000.
The princely sum made available by these magnificent gifts will enable The University of Rochester to establish its new school on a firm basis and with the very highest standards. It is a noble challenge to us to be worthy of such a trust. It calls upon us to see to it that the college, which is the foundation on which alone such advanced professional education can be built, is maintained in ever-increasing strength. I have no doubt that our friends will welcome the opportunity as need arises to enable us to respond to that call.
1920 "Eastman Provides a Medical School," The Campus, June 15, 1920, Page 1.
Largest Shareholder," Democrat and Chronicle, April 11,
1922, Page 22.
The University of Rochester 1s the largest shareholder of the Western Union Telegraph Company's stock, having received 5,600 shares from George Eastman two years ago. The shares at that time were included tn a gift made by Mr. Eastman jointly with the General Education Board. The value of the holdings is $438,000, on which 7 per cent. dividends are now paid.
1922 The University at the Cross Roads
1922 Our University Past and Present
1922 Our university as teacher and neighbor
1924 Dad, Give for Me! April 8, 1924
1925 Rochester at Seventy-five: Address Before Iota Chapter, Phi Beta Kappa, June 14, 1925, by John Rothwell Slater
1925 Rochester and Colgate : historical backgrounds of the two universities, by Jesse Leonard Rosenberger
of the Genesee Country, Volume II, edited by Lockwood R. Doty
Pages 728-733: History of the University of Rochester.
1927 Rochester, the making of a university, by Jesse Leonard Rosenberger, with an introduction by President Rush Rhees.
Going Forward on New Subway," Democrat and Chronicle,
February 27, 1928, Page 15.
Lehigh and Erie Underpass at Elmwood Avenue to be Finished by November. Crittenden Boulevard to be Extended, Will Connect University Units.
1929 "New University Seal Symbolizes College Expansion," Democrat and Chronicle, January 11, 1929, Page 19.
1929 The University of Rochester; its honored past and expanding future | pdf |
1930 The University of Rochester: A Story of Expansion and its Background, by Hugh A. Smith
of R. Assets Set at 83 Millions in Report; Treasurer Scouts Rating of
5th Richest in Land," Democrat and Chronicle, November 10,
1934, Page 13.
Operating expense total reached $3,420,715 in '33-'34 School Year. Included in the U of R assets is an endowment of $54,008,103.37, a large percentage of which was made possible through bequests of George Eastman.
1934 "The University of Rochester: Its Place in the Civic Century," by Edward Reuben Foreman, Centennial History of Rochester, New York, 4:127-163 (1934)
1935 Proceedings and addresses at the inauguration of Alan Valentine as president of the University of Rochester, November 14 and 15, 1935
1936 "U. of R. Worth 85 Millions, Can't Build Gym for Girls," Democrat and Chronicle, November 7, 1936, Page 13.
Universities and Colleges, Third Edition, Edited by Clarence
Pages 782-786: University of Rochester
and Monroe County
Pages 214-234: The University of Rochester
Heads Reject Students' Protest Against Radio Fee," Democrat and
Chronicle, October 20, 1939, Page 23.
For the privilege of having radios and electric phonographs in their dormitory rooms, University of Rochester students will pay $2.50 each term, beginning with the second semester, it was announced yesterday.
1946 Rhees of Rochester, by John Rothwell Slater
1950 "UR Presents City Hall Annex Property to Municipality for Memorial Site Use," Democrat and Chronicle, April 22, 1950, Page 34.
1950 "Women at the University Before 1900,” by Patricia E. Fisher, Genesee Country Scrapbook 1:19-20.
1950 Rochester's University (1850-1950) a 100th anniversary address, by Alan Valentine. Presented to the Newcomen Society of England on April 13, 1950.
1950 The University of Rochester: The First Hundred Years | pdf |
1951 "The First Hundred Years of the University of Rochester," by John R. Slater, New York History 32(2):165-171 (April 1951)
1951 The inauguration of Cornelis Willem de Kiewiet as president of the University of Rochester: June 11, 1951
1951 Aerial Photo of Medical Center and River Campus
1953 With an eye toward us : the University of Rochester
Than Professors!," Democrat and Chronicle, May 22, 19555,
Your Modern University is complex business which takes all kinds of skills and crafts to operate its 'city within a city' services.
of R. to Receive Estimated 10 million of Hochstetter Will," Democrat
and Chronicle, June 21, 1956, Page 59.
Ralph Hochstetter of Buffalo, president of the Cliff Petroleum Co.
University of Rochester...One University in a Changing World: A
Ten-Year Report," Rochester Review 24(1):1-36
"The greatest growth and development in any decade of its history."
1963 "The Expanding University: 1.-College of Engineering and Applied Science," Democrat and Chronicle, February 17, 1963, Page 1M. | Part 2 |
1963 "The Expanding University: 2.-College of Education," Democrat and Chronicle, March 24, 1963, Page 1M. | Part 2 |
1963 "The Expanding University: 3.-College of Arts and Science," Democrat and Chronicle, May 5, 1963, Page 1M. | Part 2 |
1963 The inauguration of W. Allen Wallis as President of the University: Friday, the seventeenth of May, nineteen hundred sixty-three at ten in the morning in the Eastman Theatre, Rochester
1963 "The Expanding University: 4.-School of Medicine and Dentistry," Democrat and Chronicle, June 16, 1963, Page 1M.
1963 "The Expanding University: 5.-The Eastman School of Music," Democrat and Chronicle, August 11, 1963, Page 1M. | Part 2 |
1963 "The Expanding University: 6.-How Big Will the U. of R. Grow?," Democrat and Chronicle, October 6, 1963, Page 1M. | Part 2 |
to Allow CD Shelters," Democrat and Chronicle, May 12, 1964,
The University of Rochester has elected to participate in the Federal Fallout Shelter Program, President W. Allen Wallis reported yesterday. Wallis said parts of almost all buildings on the River Campus and in the Medical Center and Eastman School of Music will be designated shelter areas.
1965 "$80 Million Expansion Projected by U. of R.," Democrat and Chronicle, April 30, 1965, Page 1. | Part 2 |
On The Campus," Democrat and Chronicle, September 25, 1966,
Page 1M. | Part
New Hospital and Campus buildings
1967 "A University Dream That Failed," by Arthur J. May, New York History 48(2):168-181 (April 1967)
1970 "The History of the University of Rochester Libraries," by Catherine D. Hayes, The University of Rochester Library Bulletin 25(3):59-122 (Spring 1970) | also here |
1973 "Wallis Announces Plan To Create Law School," Campus Times, February 7, 1973, Page 1.
Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, Carnegie
Commission on Higher Education, October 1973
Page 1: 1. Doctoral-Granting Institutions
1.1 Research Universities I The 50 leading universities in terms of federal financial support of academic science in at least two of the three academic years, 1968-69, 1969-70, and 1970-71, provided they awarded at least 50 Ph.D.’s (plus M.D.’s if a medical school was on the same campus) in 1969-70. Rockefeller University was included because of the high quality of its research and doctoral training, although it did not meet these criteria. [This is often referred to as a Carnegie Tier I rating.]
Page 11: University of Rochester, enrollment 8,587.
1974 "State Approves UR Proposal for Law School," Campus Times, March 29, 1974, Page 1.
1974 David Jayne Hill and the Problem of World Peace, by Aubrey Parkman
1975 Inauguration of Robert L. Sproull: as President and Chief Executive Officer February 1, 1975
1977 History of the University of Rochester, 1850-1962, by Arthur J. May. Expanded edition with notes | another copy with better formatting |
1984 University of Rochester: the inauguration of George Dennis O'Brien as eighth president of the University, October 1, 1984
of Rochester : photography, by Ira Block | also here
Pages 97-112: A look back at Rochester, selections from the photographic archives
1988 Magnum opus : the story of the Memorial Art Gallery, 1913-1988, by Elizabeth Brayer
1994 The inauguration of Thomas H. Jackson as ninth President of the University [of Rochester]: Saturday, October 22, 1994 at ten in the morning in the Eastman Theatre, Rochester.
1996 George Eastman: A Biography, by Elizabeth Brayer | another copy |
2000 From coeducation to coordinate education and back again: A history of gender in undergraduate education at the University of Rochester, 1900--1961, by Christine Margaret Mary Lundt. PhD. Disseration in History, State University of New York at Buffalo
2000 Beside the Genesee: a pictorial history of the University of Rochester, by Jan LaMartina Waxman, edited by Margaret Bond
2005 Inauguration of Joel Seligman as tenth president, University of Rochester, October 23, 2005
2008 University of Rochester Campus Master Plan.
2009 George Eastman Tribute (video)
2009 Wish You Were Here: A Century of Postcards of the University of Rochester, compiled and written by Mark S. Zaid, Nancy Martin, Karl S. Kabelac & Melissa Mead | book announcement |
Dynamic Attitude," by Janice Bullard Pieterse, Rochester Review
76(6):30-45 (July-August 2014)
Cornelis de Kiewiet
2014 Our work is but begun: a history of the University of Rochester, 1850-2005, by Janice Bullard Pieterse
2019 The Inaugural Convocation of President Sarah C. Mangelsdorf, October 4, 2019
Sources Relating to the University of Rochester | Bibliographic Essay | General Resources | Publications | University Archives | Library Bulletins | Rochester Review | Rochester Review (since 1996) | Interpres | University Publications in the Archives | Campus Buildings from 1850 to the present | Campus Times and other Student newspapers | A - Z List of University Archives Registers | Current University Publications | Student Publications |
|Annual Catalogue of the University of Rochester|
Annual Bulletins from
1959 onward are available here.
Catalogue and Directories of Alumni
The Rochester Campus | 1876 | 1877 | 1879 | 1920 | Other student newspapers |
|Annual Report of the University to the Regents of the University of the State of New York|
|Annual Report of the President to the Board of Trustees|
|*The 1920-1921 report was not printed, relevant information was included in the 1921-1922 report.|
History of Rochester references
Pictures of University of Rochester in Rochester, NY
Speaking Stones papers
Special thanks to Melissa S. Mead, John M. and Barbara Keil University Archivist and Rochester Collections Librarian, Department of Rare Books and Special Collections for her generous assistance in providing information and documents for this project. Also many thanks to Lauren Novosat for her assistance in finding deeds.
suggestions, questions, and corrections are always welcome and can be
Morris A. Pierce (UR PhD 1993)
Department of History
364 Rush Rhees Library
University of Rochester
Rochester NY 14627-0070
Last updated March 16, 2023.
© 2021-2023 Morris A. Pierce