Today marks an important anniversary for scientific development in Israel. On this day in 1949, the Weizmann Institute of Science received its present-day name and form, after being first established by Dr. Chaim Weizmann in 1934 as the Daniel Sieff Research Institute.
Following a massive fund-raising campaign between 1944 and 1946, the Institute was rebuilt as a much larger university complex. The first new building (now known as the Ziskind Building) officially opened its doors on 2 November 1949, to coincide with the 32nd anniversary of the Balfour Declaration.
The new and improved institute now had five departments: mathematics and computer science, biology, biochemistry, chemistry, and physics. To honor its founder on his upcoming 75th birthday, the institute was renamed the Weizmann Institute of Science.
In the years since, the Weizmann Institute produced many landmark scientific achievements. To name only a few: in 1954, a team working at the Institute built the WEIZAC, a stored-program electronic computer - the very first in Israel and among the first of its kind worldwide. Israel’s first commercial drug Copaxone was created there in 1997, and the Institute remains a trailblazer in the field of cancer research, as well as many others.
Photo from National Photo Collection, 19
Photo from National Photo Collection, 1972