In 1891, the Hygienic Laboratory, as it came to be called, was moved to Washington,
D.C., near the U.S. Capitol. For the next decade, Kinyoun remained the sole
full-time staff member. He inaugurated a training program in bacteriology
for MHS officers and conducted numerous tests of water purity and air pollution
for the District of Columbia and the Congress. In 1901, the laboratory was
belatedly recognized in law when Congress authorized $35,000 for construction
of a new building in which the laboratory could investigate "infectious
and contagious diseases and matters pertaining to the public health."
Occupied in 1904, this building was located at 25th and E Streets, N. W.,
in Washington, D.C. The founding legislation for the NIH, therefore, resides
in a routine supplemental appropriations act. Many other scientific agencies
of the federal government were also created via "money bills."
Congress was not convinced that such bureaucracies would prove demonstratively
useful, so it chose to preserve the option of divesting the government of
them simply by not renewing their funding.
In 1902 two acts contributed significantly to the emergence of the Hygienic Laboratory as a center for
research within the federal government. The first reorganized the MHS and
renamed it the Public Health and Marine Hospital Service (PH-MHS), moving
it toward its status as the chief U.S. public health agency. More importantly
for the Hygienic Laboratory, the act launched a formal program of research
by designating the pathological and bacteriological work as the Division
of Pathology and Bacteriology and by creating three new components that
represented the most fruitful areas for research at that time: the Divisions
of Chemistry, Pharmacology, and Zoology. The importance of these new programs
was underscored by the provision that the PH-MHS could hire scientist researchers with Ph.D.'s
to head them. Up until this time, the professional staff had been limited to physicians.
|The Hygienic Laboratory building at
25th and E Streets, N. W., Washington, D.C. Occupied 1904 - 1941