Gone but not forgotten: Part 2

“Whatever good things we build, end up building us.” — Jim Rohn

We already mentioned that we at Rivier are happily getting ready to build a new science center here on campus.   As referenced in our last post, Gone, But not Forgotten, St. Joseph Hall and Annex was the first old building to be razed as part of this improvement effort; this week, it’s Mendel’ Hall’s turn.

It is bittersweet, seeing some old buildings being torn down; they contain more than classrooms, or desks….good memories are often contained within those walls.   We remind ourselves that these buildings have already served their purpose, and we hold those memories close.

Here’s a look back at Mendel Hall:

Mendel Hall, shortly after it was built in 1959


Rivier students taking a stroll; St. Joseph Hall is on the left, Mendel is on the Right.



Archival photographs, Past and present

Gone, But not Forgotten

“We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.”– Winston Churchill

This week, crews began demolition on St. Joseph Hall and Annex in order to make room for a new science center here at Rivier.  While the future science center will be a wonderful, welcome addition to our campus, we thought it worthwhile to take a look back at the pretty stone building that served Rivier for many years:

Rocks for St. Josephs 1897

Sale of St. Joseph's 1943
At one time, the Annex was a two-family home. Over the years, it housed some of the Sisters, the Chaplain, and the Athletic Department’s office.


1954 hurricane St. Joseph
The aftermath of Hurricane Carol, 1954. Translated: “Damage to Rivier College: The grounds of Rivier College were a mass of debris and trees cut down by the raging elements of yesterday. We see above the nuns and a college employee studying the damage. To be noted, two giant trees fell at the foot of the statue of St. Joseph that can be seen in the center of the photo, without even touching it.”


St. Joseph's 1957
St. Joseph Hall, 1957
st joseph
St. Joseph Hall, 2016
st joseph destruction4
September 20, 2018.  The statue of St. Joseph stands tall amid it all.
Archival photographs

Welcome Back!

“Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” — Seneca

There’s a great energy in the air here at Rivier; we welcomed our students for the Fall 2018 Semester this week.   This is a brand new academic year, a clean slate, and we wish success to each of our scholars.

The start of the Fall Semester in 1941 was especially momentous for us, and an especially new start: at that time, Rivier left its original location in Hudson, NH to our present campus site.

Rivier’s original campus, which is now Presentation of Mary Academy, in Hudson NH. c. 1940

You can see some more photos of the original campus and first students  here.

Below are a few photos commemorating the move:

New Riv Campus 1941
Foundress Hall (now called Madeleine Hall).  Though most of the trees are now gone, the building still remains.
New Riv Students 1941.doc
Class photos of Rivier students on the new campus.



Archival photographs, Past and present

How’s the Air up There?

“Photographs open doors into the past, but they also allow a look into the future.” — Sally Mann

It’s always fascinating to see something familiar from a different angle, and equally interesting to see how a place evolves over time.  We thought it would be fun to share these aerial photographs of Rivier, taken through the years:

Mid – 1950’s
1957, with notations
Detailed photo, 1964
aerial 1971
Archival photographs, Commencement

Commencement: Looking Back and Moving Ahead

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward.  You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.” — Steve Jobs

Another academic year has come to a close.  The campus is quiet this week; we trust that this means our students survived Exams and are now off enjoying summer vacation.  And our members of the class of 2018 are looking forward to Rivier’s 83rd Commencement, which will be held this upcoming Sunday.

To our Graduates: As you focus on the bright future before you, we hope you look back fondly at your days here at Rivier.  We are pleased to have been a part of your journey in life, and grateful for the connection we will always share.

To “connect the dots” between our past and present, we’d like to share a few photos of Rivier’s earliest graduates:

Rivier College, Class of 1939
Rivier College, Class of 1940
Commencement program 1936 part 2
From the cover of Rivier’s Commencement Program in 1936. This is the entrance to the original campus in Hudson, New Hampshire. The Presentation of Mary Academy now occupies the site.
Rivier College, Class of 1943. This photo was taken at Rivier’s original campus in Hudson; the site is now Presentation of Mary Academy.



Archival photographs

Don’t Stress. Do your Best. Forget the Rest.

“Trust yourself.  You know more than you think you do.” — Dr. Benjamin Spock

Final Exams are about to begin, and although we do our best to provide “Relaxation Stations” to our students, there is a little bit of tension in the air.   All we can say to our students today is: we wish you success, and we have confidence that you will make it through and reach your goals.  Study hard, take a deep breath, and conquer those tests!

In honor of exam week, we thought we’d share a vintage photo of some Rivier students studying hard, circa 1940.

Rivier students studying for exams, c. 1940




Archival photographs

A Tranquil Place

“Wisdom grows in quiet places.” — Austin O’Malley

This April has been unseasonably cold and icy thus far, even by New Hampshire standards.  But, hopefully, warm spring days will come our way, and we can enjoy some of the lovely outdoor spaces on Rivier’s campus.   Our Sunken Garden, located behind Madeleine Hall, is one such spot.  It has undergone a few changes over the years, yet has always been a lovely, peaceful area:

The Sunken Garden, c. 1955
Sisters praying, c. 1955
Sisters praying, c. 1955
A tranquil scene in the sunken garden, 1989
“Lasting Impressions” bricks, commemorating Rivier’s 75th Anniversary, 2008
The original “Rivier College” Arch was relocated here in 2014; as referenced in our earlier post, Beginnings



Archives On Display

“Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places, where other people see nothing.” — Camille Pissaro

It is no secret that we are proud of our Archives collection. This month, we are pleased to have some of the Archives’ artifacts on display here at Rivier University.  We invite you to stop by the Regina Library, and take a look!IMG_20180403_083408758

Alumni, Archival photographs, Sisters of the Presentation of Mary

Travel…With a Mission

“Wherever you go, go with all your heart.” –Confucius

Those of us who are fortunate enough to travel to other parts of the world, do so for many reasons.  In 1996 and 1997, Sr. Jacqueline LeBlanc (then head of Campus Ministry) led Mission trips to Haiti, where she and the group ministered to the poor and the ill.

There are two photo albums in the Archives detailing this trip:  The participants saw unimaginable illness, devastation and poverty….yet they also found love, friendship and beauty at every turn.  Below are just a few photos from these trips:


Blessed Anne-Marie Rivier, Sister Madeleine of Jesus, Sisters of the Presentation of Mary

Heritage Day: Two Women

“I have come to kindle a fire…” –Blessed Anne Marie Rivier

Today, we celebrate the heritage of the Sisters of the Presentation of Mary, and of Rivier University.    There is much to explore in regards to the Sisters, the University, and the many people who have made it what it is.  Ultimately, though, Rivier’s history comes down to two women, born generations apart, who shared a vision of education, faith, and charity. : Blessed Anne Marie Rivier, the Foundress of the Sisters of the Presentation of Mary, and Sister Madeleine of Jesus, who founded Rivier.

In honor of Heritage Day, we thought it appropriate to share two artistic renderings of these two great women:

Plaster plaque of Anne Marie Rivier, made by Bernarde and Nieri.


sr madeleine statue
Wooden statue of Sr. Madeleine of Jesus, pm. Sculpted by Elise B. Tougas, ’48 in 1983