Biographical Sketch of John Davison Rockefeller
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Rockefeller, John Davison; capitalist; born, Richford, N. Y., July 8, 1839; son of William Avery and Eliza (Davison) Rockefeller; brother of William R. (q. v.); moved to Cleveland, O., 1853; public school education; married Laura C. Spelman, of Cleveland, Sept. 8, 1864; father of John Davison, Jr., and Edith Rockefeller McCormick (both q. v.); was clerk in forwarding and commission house at 19, partner in firm of Clark & Rockefeller, commission merchants; firm became Andrews, Clark & Co., and engaged in oil business; in 1865, the firm, then William Rockefeller & Co., built Standard Oil Works, Cleveland; this was consolidated with others in Standard Oil Co., 1870; other interests were later acquired and the Standard Oil Trust was formed, 1882, but dissolved, 1892; the various Standard Oil companies being operated separately, with Mr. Rockefeller at the head of the entire business, until Dec. 4, 1911, when be retired; be has given a total of $43,000,000 to the General Education Board, of which he gave $32,000,000 at one time, February, 1907; also over $23,000,000 to University of Chicago; a $100,000 building, 3,000 vols. on Greek art and literature, and money donations to Vassar; $1,375,000 to Barnard College; $250,000 to American Baptist Missionary Union and Home Missionary Society; $1,000,000 to Yale, 1905; endowed Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, New York, with $1,825,000; Southern Education Fund, $1,126,000; Harvard, $1,000-000, Teachers College, $500,000, and numerous other donations to colleges, churches, missions, etc., making a total of more than $85,000,000.