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Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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Early in '54, in the effort to get funds for '55, I went to see Bridges and I told him that we still needed 15 million for construction of research laboratories.

Q:

This to be used by the Institutes?

Lasker:

By the Institutes as grants to medical schools of universities like Chicago and Columbia or Harvard, or wherever, because they didn't have enough space for people to work in.

Bridges said to me, “If you're ever going to get construction funds, I think this is the year and you should concentrate on them. How much do you need?” Having spoken with Senator Thye shortly before and been told that Senator Thye thought that 15 million would be a reasonable sum to ask on the Senate floor for construction, I told Bridges, “Fifteen million.” He felt if Thye and he were for it, it was going to be not too difficult to achieve and we should not expect large additional funds for research grants.

Q:

Why did he feel that this particular year was the propitious one?

Lasker:

Well, I don't know. It was unfinished business; we tried to get it the year before, but we didn't get any money in fiscal '54, so he said, “Let's try for it this year.”



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