This article gives a 'time-line' of Instructional Design. The author states that the early contributors to ID were Aristotle, Socrates, and Plato. Then it was added to by St. Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century. The history then skips until the 1920's with a mention of Thorndyke. It appears that the military really took advantage of this information and used it to train soldiers during WWII. In the 1950's, Skinner emerged with his book the Science of Learning and the Art of Teaching talking about basic behaviorist principles. Next we move on to Benjamin Bloom and I think every teacher is very familiar with Bloom's Taxonomy. In the 60's, Robert Glaser introduced the concept of "instructional design" although his idea was more directly linked to individualized instruction. Also during this time several other ideas emerged, computer-assisted instruction and performance objectives. The 60's and 70's were remarkable in that an almost complete overhaul of the education system was needed. The 80's brought many different instructional models and with the 90's came even more technology accented models and ideas.
This is a good overview of the history of ID and how it has evolved into what it is or presumed to be today. It is brief but gives one a good idea of the evolution of this idea and concept.