January 5, 1956
President Blanding announced the gift to the college of $200,000 in securities from Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd. Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller was a graduate in the Class of 1931. The gift was unrestricted, but Mr. Rockefeller wrote that he and his wife “would be happy if the money were to be used for salaries” of faculty and administrative personnel. He added that the recent contributions to American colleges and universities by the Ford Foundation “impressed and inspired” him.
Having identified faculty salaries as the “number one concern” in higher education, Miss Blanding concurred with the Rockefellers’ wishes. An almost immediate use of some of the Rockefeller gift was the establishment of the George Sherman Dickinson Chair of Music in honor of Professor Dickinson, a member of the music department from 1916 until 1953 and for many years chairman of the department. Professor Carl Parrish was the first recipient.