In 1885, the Hitchcock Endowment Fund was established from a bequest made by Dr. Charles M. Hitchcock to institute a professorship at the University of California for free lectures upon scientific and practical subjects. Dr. Hitchcock, whose longstanding interest in education inspired his contribution, was a physician and served as medical director of the Pacific Coast in the United States Army Medical Corps. The Hitchcock Foundation Lectures began in 1909 and were later expanded and retitled the Charles M. and Martha Hitchcock Lectures in 1932, thanks to a generous bequest from Dr. Hitchcock's daughter, Lillie Hitchcock Coit.

TitleLecturerYear
Line-1: A Mobile Element in the Human Genome Maxine Singer1993
A Piece of Sunshine Hendrick van de Hulst1993
Far from the Stars – in the Midst of Astronomy Hendrick van de Hulst1993
How Does a Glue Work? Pierre-Gilles de Gennes1992
Ultradivided Matter Pierre-Gilles de Gennes1992
Classical Conditioning: Is There a Cellular Alphabet for Learning? Eric Kandel1992
Sensitization: The Long and Short of Long-Term Memory Eric Kandel1992
Habituation: A Reductionist’s Strategy to the Study of Procedural Learning Eric Kandel1992
Cell and Molecular Biological Approaches to Learning and Memory Eric Kandel1992
The Fractal Geometry of Nature’s Complexity Benoit Mandelbrot1992
Fractals: For the Pleasure of the Mind and the Pleasure of the Eye Benoit Mandelbrot1992
Why Did It Take So Long? The Nature and Origins of Magnetic Resonance Imaging Paul C. Lauterbur1991
Cultures Clifford Geertz1990
Countries Clifford Geertz1990
Towns Clifford Geertz1990
Anthropologist Clifford Geertz1990
After the Fact: Indonesia, Morocco and the Recurrent Clifford Geertz1990
Qualitative Reasoning: How We Think Our Way through the Day Herbert Simon1990
Liberal Education: The View From Cognitive Science Herbert Simon1990
Literary Criticism as Cognitive Science Herbert Simon1990
The Big Bang Revisited Early Nucleosynthesis in an Inhomogeneous Universe William Fowler1989
The Age of the Observable Universe William Fowler1989
Estimating the Inestimable II Kenneth Boulding1989
Estimating the Inestimable I Kenneth Boulding1989
What Hopes for Progress: How Can We Realize Human Potential? Kenneth Boulding1989
What Hopes for Plenty: Can We Abolish Poverty Kenneth Boulding1989
What Hopes for Peace: Can We Abolish War? Kenneth Boulding1989
What Hopes for a Better World Kenneth Boulding1989
Direction of Time Stephen Hawking1988
Black Holes, White Holes, and Worm Holes Stephen Hawking1988
Origin of the Universe Stephen Hawking1988
Is Biology an Autonomous Science? Ernst Mayr1987
Current Controversies in Evolutionary Biology Ernst Mayr1987
The Transforming Gene of a Leukemia Virus David Baltimore1987
Control of Antibody Gene Expression David Baltimore1987
Geometry and Physics: The Future Sir Michael F. Atiyah1987
Geometry and Physics: The Past Sir Michael F. Atiyah1987
Enzymology to the Rescue of Medicine Frank H. Westheimer1987
Are Our Universities Rotten at the ‘Core’? Frank H. Westheimer1987
Ecological Aspects of Disease in Human Populations Robert M. May1986
When Two and Two Do Not Make Four: Nonlinear Problems in Ecology Robert M. May1986
Toward Healthy Development in Childhood and Adolescence David A. Hamburg1986
International Cooperation for Health in Developing Countries David A. Hamburg1986
Avoiding Nuclear War: Crisis Prevention and U.S. – Soviet Relations David A. Hamburg,1986
Evolutionary Biotechnology Manfred Eigen1985
Optimization in the Universe of Nucleic Acid Sequences Manfred Eigen1985
Replication Kinetics and the Concept of Quasi-Species Manfred Eigen1985
Medical Technology Assessment in the Nation: Present State and Future Needs Frederick Mosteller1985
Contributions of Meta-Analysis to Statistics and Health Frederick Mosteller1985
Frontiers of Health Assessment Frederick Mosteller1985
Mythical Thought and Social Life Claude Levi-Strauss1984
The Birth of Historical Societies Claude Levi-Strauss1984
Non-Linear Optics and Spectroscopy Nicolaas Bloembergen1984
Lasers in Science and Technology Nicolaas Bloembergen1984
Spectroscopic Studies in Astrochemistry Gerhard Herzberg1983
Molecular Spectra and Molecular Structure Gerhard Herzberg1983
Chemical Bonds in Biology Linus Pauling1983
The Development of the Concept of the Chemical Bond Linus Pauling1983
Questions Arising from My Model and Others Freeman J. Dyson1982
An Abstract Model for the Origin of Life Freeman J. Dyson1982
Experimental and Theoretical Background Freeman J. Dyson1982
Origins of Life Freeman J. Dyson1982
The Tall Building Artistically Reconsidered: Beyond Function Ada Louise Huxtable1982
The Tall Building Artistically Reconsidered: Beyond Style Ada Louise Huxtable1982
Unique and Unusual Patterning of Behaviour as a Consequence of Isolation Carleton Gajdusek1982
Genetic, Toxic, and Deficiency Diseases in High Incidence in Isolated Populations Carleton Gajdusek1982
Infectious Diseases in Isolated Populations Carleton Gajdusek1982
The Primeval Moon: Magnetism and Polar Wandering S. Keith Runcorn1981
A Modern Scientific Controversy: Continental Drift to Plate Tectonics S. Keith Runcorn1981
Entropy, Structure and Fluctuations Ilya Prigogine1981
Life in a Magnetic Field Edward M. Purcell1981
A Physicist Looks, a Bacterium Edward M. Purcell1981
When Are Computers Better Than We Realized? Samuel Winograd1980
Why Are Computers Worse Than We Hoped? Samuel Winograd1980
Neuronal Plasticity During Development Torsten N. Wiesel1980
Single Cell Analysis and Functional Architecture Torsten N. Wiesel1980
The Metafont Method of Alphabet Design Donald E. Knuth1979
Typesetting with the Aid of Mathematics Donald E. Knuth1979
Towards an Integrated Science of Inter-Personal Relationships Robert A. Hinde1979
The Dynamics of the Parent-Offspring Relationship Robert A. Hinde1979
The Development of Parent-Infant Attachment Robert A. Hinde1979
The Design and Construction of Early Iron Arch Bridges, 1779-1830 Alec W. Skempton1978
Hill-Slopes in the Weald of Kent: Stability Analysis and Pleistocene Geology Alec W. Skempton1978
The House of Humphry Davy: Reflections on the Bicentenary of His Birth Sir George Porter1978
Science and the Human Purpose Sir George Porter1978
Life Under the Sun Sir George Porter1978
A Catastrophe Model for Anorexia Nervosa and Its Cure E. Christopher Zeeman1977
An Introduction to Catastrophe Theory E. Christopher Zeeman1977
Mouse Teratocarcinoma and Embryonic Development Fran Jacob1977
Evolution and Tinkering Fran Jacob1977
What is an Elementary Particle? Victor F. Weisskopf1976
The Frontiers and Limits of Science Victor F. Weisskopf1976
Black Holes: Their Roles in Astronomy and in Physics S. Chandrasekhar1976
Why Are the Stars as They Are? S. Chandrasekhar1976
The Myth of Social Anthropology Ioan M. Lewis1976
The Analysis of Data: Exploration as One Road to Discovery Sir John W. Tukey1975
The Analysis of Data: Connecting the Future to the Past Sir John W. Tukey1975
The Floor of the Deep Oceans: What Is Happening There Sir Edward Bullard1975
The Floor of the Deep Oceans: What Are They Like Sir Edward Bullard1975
The Emergence of Life and of Intelligence Sir Fred Hoyle1974