Misericordia's 90th Anniversary

90th Anniversary Logo

On September 24, 2014, Misericordia celebrated its 90th Anniversary.

As we look forward to the future of an institution that was founded by the Sisters of Mercy and continues to imbue the values of mercy, service, justice and hospitality into its mission, this year is an opportunity to reflect upon our history—and the events, people, organizations and communities that have contributed to our success.

The Sisters of Mercy establish a presence in Wyoming Valley, Luzerne County, Pa.

June 14, 1914: 99 2/3 acres of farmland in Dallas is purchased for the Sisters of Mercy.

December 12, 1914: Land in Dallas is officially designated as the future site of College Misericordia, the first four-year college in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania. The construction of the first campus building and the opening of College Misericordia was delayed following the outbreak of World War I.

March 21, 1920: Saint Mary's Convent on Washington Street in Wilkes-Barre is destroyed by fire. This was the home of the Sisters of Mercy, and the only fatality from the fire was Mother Mary Teresa Walsh, who was responsible for planning the move of the Sisters of Mercy to Dallas.

June 3, 1921: Groundbreaking for College Misericordia by Right Reverend Michael J. Hoban, Bishop of Scranton.

Groundbreaking Ceremony

Cornerstone laid for College Misericordia's first building, later rededicated in 2002 as Mercy Hall.

Mercy Hall in 1924

August 15, 1924: 2,500 people witnessed the dedication and blessing of College Misericordia by Bishop Hoban.

September 24, 1924: 37 students began their collegiate education at College Misericordia.

January 12, 1925: College Misericordia is granted charter by the Pennsylvania Department of Education to confer B.A. and B.S. degrees.

Misericordia holds its first May Day Crowning, where Gertrude O'Connell is crowned the first May Queen.

June 14, 1927: First graduating class of five, including Valedictorian Gertrude O'Connell.

Valedictorian Gertrude O'Connell

St. Joseph's Cottage opened as a gymnasium.


First student yearbook published as The Litany.

First four-year class graduates, including Valedictorian Helen Rita Gildea, later Sister Marianna Gildea RSM.

September 1928: McAuley Hall opens as the first free-standing student residence.

First student newspaper is published, the Miss Recordia.

Summer courses are first offered.

East and West wings are added to the original college building.

Misericordia Alma Mater written by Sister Teresa Mary Moyles RSM.

October 7, 1946: McGann Hall, student residence, opens. Named for Mother Catherine McGann who was Academic Dean from 1924 to 1937.

St. Joseph's Cottage, the former gymnasium, opens as a student residence.

September 1949: Rosary Hall on Lake Street is added to campus as the Home Economics Building.

Rosary Hall  in 1949

Walsh Hall opens, and is named in memory of Mother Mary Teresa Walsh.

Groundbreaking for Hafey Science Hall.

Regina Hall opens. Later rededicated as the MacDonald Art Gallery.

Regina Hall in 1956

Bishop Hafey Memorial Science Hall dedicated. Later rededicated as the Hafey-McCormick Science Hall.

Bishop Hafey Memorial Science Hall in 1957

College Misericordia reorganizes its administration. The first full-time President, Sister Celestine McHale RSM, who graduated from College Misericordia in 1928, and served as President of College Misericordia from 1957 to 1964, is hired.

New College seal adopted.

College Seal

First graduate program offered at College Misericordia.

Merrick Hall dedicated in memory of Sister Annunciata Merrick, who was Academic Dean from 1945 to 1957. Later rededicated as the Banks Student Life Center.

Alumnae Hall, student residence, is dedicated.

Literary Magazine, Instress, is first published.

First Madrigal Dinner was performed in Merrick Hall.

First Madrigal Dinner was performed in Merrick Hall in 1970.

Groundbreaking for North Hall, student residence. Named McHale Hall for Sister Celestine McHale RSM.

McHale Hall opens, and Sister Celestine McHale receives honorary degree from College Misericordia.

February 18, 1972: Poet Maya Angelou speaks on campus for the first time.

June 23, 1972: College Misericordia becomes an evacuation center for the Nesbitt Medical Center during the Agnes Flood. 52 babies are born in the basement of Alumnae Hall during the evacuation.

College Misericordia becomes an evacuation center for the Nesbitt Medical Center during the Agnes Flood in 1972.

McHale residence hall opened.

First men graduate from College Misericordia.

College Misericordia officially becomes coeducational.

The McGinty Gym is dedicated underneath the Walsh Auditorium. This gym is named for Sister Eloise McGinty RSM '40, an avid sports fan, who was Registrar of College Misericordia from 1967 to 1984.

Rosenn Plaza and the J. Dugan sculpture Emerging are dedicated.

The Cougar becomes the official College mascot.

First Theatre-on-the-Green production of A Midsummer Night's Dream.

Regina Hall rededicated as MacDonald Art Gallery.

Town Houses open.

Town  Houses open.

Anderson Sports and Health Center dedicated, and named for Dr. Robert S. Anderson, M.D.

Anderson Sports and Health Center opened in 1993.

Gildea Hall, student residence, is dedicated in honor of Sister Marianna Gildea RSM who graduated from College Misericordia in 1928 and was Academic Dean from 1957 to 1967.

Student newspaper renamed The Highlander.

History of College Misericordia published as, "At the edge of centuries: College Misericordia," by Dr. Regina Kelly RSM '43 and Dr. Agnes Toloczko Cardoni '69.

August 27, 1999: Mary Kintz Bevevino Library dedicated.

Mary Kintz Bevevino Library opened in 1999.

Merrick Hall is renovated and rededicated as the Banks Student Life Center.

Women with Children Program — one of only eight in the country —is established to provide single mothers of all ages the opportunity to achieve their college degrees while living on campus with their children.

Women with Children Program was established in 2000.

Opening of the Mangelsdorf Field at the Anderson Outdoor Athletic Complex.

The original campus building known as the Administration Building is renamed Mercy Hall following major renovations.

Dedication of the Geraldine Ruth Daley Anderson Bell Tower.

Geraldine Ruth Daley Anderson Bell Tower

College Misericordia applies to the Pennsylvania Department of Education for university status.

Groundbreaking occurs for Insalaco Hall and McGowan Student Residence Hall.

August 24, 2007, College Misericordia becomes Misericordia University.

College Misericordia becomes Misericordia University in 2007.

November 2, 2007: Dr. Maya Angelou returned to Misericordia to speak to a sold-out crowd of more than 1,500 guests in the Anderson Sports and Health Center.

Dr. Maya Angelou returns to Misericordia University in 2007.

John J. Passan Hall, the home of the College of Health Sciences on the lower campus, is formally dedicated.

John J. Passan Hall, the home of the Health Sciences opened in 2011.

MU dedicates Tambur field to Robert L. Tambur, his family and the Tambur Family Foundation during a doubleheader baseball game.

MU dedicates Tambur field in 2013.

Misericordia celebrates its 90th anniversary.

powered by finalsite