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Explore Our History

125 Years of Inquiry and Impact

University of Chicago founder John D. Rockefeller Sr. and first president William Rainey Harper (foreground), 1901.

The University of Chicago has a rich past and a promising future. By exploring UChicago across the decades following its 1890 founding, we glean a sharpened sense of where we have been, where we are headed, and who we are now.

The links below represent a range of resources for tracing UChicago’s history of inquiry and impact through the present day—from the evolution of our community, to key figures in our intellectual and institutional growth, to major achievements over time, to our ongoing traditions of civic and global engagement.

UChicago’s campus includes neo-Gothic quadrangles, glass-walled libraries, Brutalist structures, and postmodern performance spaces. Explore the history of campus architecture.

UChicago has long engaged with its South Side community and the city of Chicago. Explore our history as it connects to Chicago’s history, and learn more about the University’s ongoing civic engagement.

Explore documents and reports pertaining to and chronicling the University of Chicago’s heritage and history.