The fund was established to honor Professor Perez Zagorin, a distinguished member of the history department from 1965 to 1990. In 1982, he was appointed the Joseph C. Wilson Professor of History. He has been the Joseph C. Wilson Professor Emeritus since 1990.
"Of all the kinds of places that exist in the world, libraries are among those I love the best...For a professional historian and scholar like myself, the library is the center and by far the most important resource of the university without which it could not possibly perform its vital educational function. Rush Rhees was an excellent library when I came to the University of Rochester in 1965 and I considered it one of my duties to do all I could to strengthen its collections in the field of my particular interests--16th and 17th century English and British history, early modern European history, and related areas in literature and philosophy." Perez Zagorin