Success, Loud and Clear

While working for Samuel Morse, Ezra Cornell devises a way to use electricity and magnetism to string telegraph wires on glass-insulated poles aboveground. He takes much of his pay in stock, becoming the largest stockholder of Western Union. The success of the telegraph enables him to found Cornell University in 1865.

Radical Beginnings

President Lincoln signs the Morrill Act into law. New York State Governor Fenton signs the Cornell charter. Together, these signatures establish Cornell as New York's first land grant university. Ezra Cornell states: "Finally, I trust we have laid the foundation of an University—an institution where any person can find instruction in any study."

Chimes Ring Out Over the Hill

The original set of nine bells first ring out from ground level at the University's opening ceremonies October 7, 1868. In 1873 they find a permanent home in McGraw Tower and have since been recast and expanded to 21 bells. They continue to ring daily concerts, making them one of the largest and most frequently played chimes in the world.

75 Years of Cornell Scholarship

In an address marking the 75th anniversary of the signing of the Cornell University charter, distinguished teacher, scholar and historian Carl L. Becker captures the spirit of the university with a phrase that would become a Cornell trademark: freedom and responsibility.

Cornell Tech, Designed for Impact

The first phase of Cornell Tech opens on Roosevelt Island, close to the heart of New York City. The campus is a space where graduate students focus on the intersection between technology and entrepreneurship, allowing it to become the urban nexus for fast-tracking tech solutions that have immediate relevance to New York City and the world.