Landmark Symposium on Quantitative Biology, 1953

By 1952, the attendance at the yearly Symposium had increased beyond the capacity of the small  "Assembly Room" (Racker Reading Room) in Blackford Hall, where the Symposia had been held since the first meeting in 1933. Bush Lecture Hall, with 250 seats, was built in 1953 to accommodate the Symposia and other large meetings at the Lab. The first Symposium held in Bush that year, XVII: Viruses, became a landmark in the history of molecular biology and genetics. It was here that Dr. James Watson made the first presentation of the DNA double helix at an open meeting. The list of attendees at that meeting reads like an honor roll of virologists and geneticists, including Bertani, Doermann, Stent, Vogt, Zinder, Delbruck, Dulbecco, Hershey, Jacob, Luria, McClintock and Watson.


(For details about the history of the symposia, see the CSHL Symposia Archive at: )



James Watson, First DNA Structure presentation, 1954