Welcome to RE:source, the Rockefeller Archive Center‘s storytelling platform. We are a team of historians, archivists, and educators working from the idea that philanthropy has impact on everyday life, sometimes in ways that many of us don’t realize.

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Philanthropy, Race, and Racism

Race & Social Justice

“Highest Standards”: Elite Philanthropy and Literary Black Voices during the Civil Rights Era

Against a backdrop of white, establishment concepts of literary excellence, one foundation struggled to appreciate Black voices.

Race & Social Justice

Who Belongs in the Boy Scouts? Philanthropy’s Support for Black Scouting

A foundation struggled one of America’s oldest youth organizations more racially inclusive. But it only got so far under Jim Crow.

Race & Social Justice

Black Education and Rockefeller Philanthropy from the Jim Crow South to the Civil Rights Era

Applying a vast fortune to the American race problem, but with decades of false assumptions and well-intended approaches that fell short.

Issues in Philanthropy

Funding a Social Movement: The Ford Foundation and Civil Rights, 1965-1970

A story recounting many accusations, from rigged elections to the meddling of big private money in grassroots organizing.

Tackling Public Health Crises

Medicine & Public Health

The Long Road to the Yellow Fever Vaccine

The yellow fever vaccine developed in the 1930s has been used worldwide ever since. Creating it took years and cost several lives. Some thought it would never happen.

Issues in Philanthropy

Timeline: American Foundations and the History of Public Health

Key points in the history of American foundations’ engagement with public health.

Medicine & Public Health

Public Health: How the Fight Against Hookworm Helped Build a System

A hundred years ago, hookworm disease was an epidemic across the US South. Northern philanthropy tried to help.

Medicine & Public Health

Philanthropy’s Search for an HIV Vaccine: Building Public-Private Partnerships in a Global Pandemic

How a meeting of scientists and health experts sparked a new international campaign to find a way to prevent AIDS.

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