Laying of the Corner Stone, April 25, 1925


Program from corner stone laying.

                The corner stone of the new library was laid April 25, 1925. The ceremony included introductory remarks by Rt. Rev. Thomas J. Shahan, an address by Patrick Cardinal Hayes, and a discourse by Rev. Dr. Peter Guilday. Thomas J. Shahan emphasized the commitment of the library to serve the people of Washington D.C.:

 “Henceforth the national Capitol will know Mr. Mullen as the donor of the magnificent Library of the Catholic University of America. For thirty five years we have hoped to see this day, and our gratitude to Mr. Mullen is in proportion to the intensity of our need, and to the opportunities which this edifice will throw open, not only to the professors and students of the Catholic University of America, but also to the citizens of the National Capital. They will find here at all times a cordial welcome and a friendly counsel, not only in matters of purely secular learning, but also in all that pertains to the nature and the history, the teachings and the spirit of the Catholic Church. This great edifice is not unworthy of comparison with the best public buildings of our city.”


Cardinal Hayes laying the corner stone of Mullen Library. [source: Washington Post]

               In his discourse, Rev. Dr. Peter Guilday drew attention to the symbolic alignment of the library with the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, which was also under construction at the time:

“The sun going down to rest in the evening casts across the greensward of our campus a last ray of splendor that falls athwart two buildings…At one end of this golden axis is the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception now being raised to the glory of the Blessed Mother of God by her loving children of the United States, and at the other, this enduring monument.”