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1910: Campus Construction Underway

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Construction of the first buildings on campus got underway in 1910.† The Board of Governors, on the recommendation of President Murray, hired the Montreal architects Brown and Vallance to design the buildings and supervise the construction. The principal buildings were to be built in the Collegiate Gothic style using native limestone (greystone) quarried just north of campus.†

Sod was turned by Chancellor Wetmore on 4 May and on 29 July Sir Wilfrid Laurier laid the cornerstone for the College building.†† The following is an excerpt of the Prime Minister's speech:

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"Education is true patriotism, for it is the best heritage which a people can have given them.† Canada cannot afford to be behind the other races of the world, she is young, but she has already universities which are distinguished and of high rank in the world.† There is no doubt that this university will in time be one of the world's greatest.† The parent who can give a good education to his boy gives the best heritage, better than gold and diamonds.† Let all who can come to this University.† Let a university arise here which may be a worthy disciple of Oxford, Cambridge, and other universities which had done so much." 1

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Related Collections

Presidentís Office fonds, RG 2001, Series I.
J.E. Murray fonds, MG 61.
Facilities Management fonds, RG 2015.


1910a: Laying corner stone, College Building, 29 July 1910. Photograph Collection, A-8.
1910b: Corner stone, College Building. Photograph Collection, A-3072.
1910c: Architectural sketch, College Building. Photograph Collection, A-57.
1910d: Construction of College Building, August 1910. Photograph Collection, A-18.


1. Miscellaneous Collection, MGM 100, file 2. Sir Wilfrid Laurier speech.

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