Museum History Interactive Timeline

1891Founding of Leland Stanford Jr. University

In 1891, Jane and Leland Stanford established Leland Stanford Jr. University in memory of their only child, Leland Jr., who died of typhoid fever in 1884 at the age of 15. Within weeks of his death, the Stanfords determined that, because they no longer could do anything for their own child, they would use their wealth to do something for “other people’s” children by building a great university devoted to producing “cultured and useful citizens.”