Artifact Details


Crisp, Peter oral history

Catalog Number



Moving image




Crisp, Peter, Interviewee
Hancock, Marguerite Gong, Interviewer


Computer History Museum

Place of Publication

Fishers Island, NY






Peter grew up on Long Island in New York, attended Yale University and then served time in the Air Force. On leaving the Air Force, he attended Harvard Business School. While in business school, he read an article in Time Magazine about Laurance Rockefeller and his plans to start an investment firm. He found that interesting and wrote a letter to Rockefeller asking about a position. That letter led to interviews, and Peter went to work for Rockefeller after graduating from business school in 1960.

Rockefeller wanted to use a portion of his inherited fortune to invest in promising companies in a variety of areas. Crisp became a junior member of the team and made the best of the opportunity, learning the internal workings of the companies in which Rockefeller invested and offering insights and advice to Rockefeller and the team. Early companies included Itek and Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Crisp describes how Laurance Rockefeller became, in his mind, the first and pioneer investor in technology-based venture capital, investing in such companies as Eastern Airlines and McDonnell Douglas.

In 1969, this Rockefeller investment arm morphed into Venrock, one the world’s leading venture capital companies, and Peter Crisp took a leading role. Two of the most famous were Apple and Intel, but there were hundreds of others. Peter describes to collegial nature of venture capital in the early years and the strong role he and others played in making their investments successful.

Crisp retired from Venrock in 1997, and took on a role of helping Laurance and David Rockefeller manager their trusts and estates for eight more years.


Oral history

Collection Title

CHM Oral History


Computer History Museum

Lot Number


Related Records

102717367 Crisp, Peter oral history