Creighton University Company History Timeline


The university was founded as Creighton College on September 2, 1878, through a gift from Mary Lucretia Creighton, who stipulated in her will that a school be established in memory of her husband, prominent Omaha businessman Edward Creighton.

Creighton Hall, built in 1878

The university opened in 1878 and was named for John and Edward Creighton, builders of the transcontinental telegraph, from whose estate came the land and money to create the school.

2, 1878, five Jesuits, two lay teachers and 120 students began classes at the new Creighton College.

Forming Men for Others since 1878.


Sarah Emily Creighton’s desire for students to have a proper place to worship resulted in the construction of St John’s Collegiate Chapel, dedicated May 6, 1888.


College of Medicine—In 1892, the Creighton University College of Medicine was founded with a large staff, state-of-the-art equipment, and a large clinic for practice.

1892: After joining the first class of the College of Medicine, Kate Drake was the first female student at Creighton.


1897: St John’s parish was established, allowing the church to conduct baptisms, weddings and funerals.


1904: The College of Law was opened in a building downtown.

In 1904, the School of Law began as a joint project with the Omaha Bar Association, with Timothy J. Mahoney as the first dean.


In 1905, the Edward Creighton Institute was opened at 210 South 18th Street.

The history of the School of Pharmacy and Health Professions (SPAHP) goes back to 1905, with the establishment of the Creighton College of Pharmacy.


John A. Creighton continued to fund the university through his death in 1907, and left it a great deal of money in his will.

1907: The Creighton Medical College was expanded to include the new College of Pharmacy.


Women were admitted to the professional schools as they were founded and to undergraduate programs in 1913.


That year he completed 28 of his 34 starts, led the league in shutouts (13) and strikeouts (268), and had an ERA of 1.12, the lowest single-season ERA since 1914.


Old Gymnasium, built in 1915


In 1919, Creighton University started hosting an Army Reserve Officer Training Corps, or ROTC, unit for 136 male students.

House, 515 North 28th Avenue, built in est 1919)


Originally called the College of Commerce, Accounts and Finance, this school opened in 1920.

Gibson amassed 3,117 total strikeouts, the first pitcher to accumulate more than 3,000 since Walter Johnson in the 1920s.


By 1921, Creighton built new facilities for each of the schools in the institute and sold the building.


1922: St John’s was expanded again, nearly doubling its size.


1924: The College of Commerce, Finance, and Journalism was built at 417 North 25th Street.


The second was built in 1925, sat 15,000 spectators, and was oriented east-west near North 25th and Burt Streets.


In 1930, an expansion added the distinctive art deco limestone façade of the building’s main entrance.


It was located at North 25th and California Streets before being demolished around 1925. It was repurposed and renamed Wareham Hall in 1934.


Her father, William Alfred Woods, was the first African-American to earn an accounting degree from Creighton around 1946.

The University suspended football during World War II, but any hope of reviving the program ended in 1946 when the president, William H. McCabe, SJ, announced that Creighton would no longer field an intercollegiate football team.


1947: The DePorres Club, an early student-driven Civil Rights group, is started on campus.


1951: The College of Arts and Sciences allowed women students for the first time.

1951: Mary Hall, a dorm for women from out-of-state, was opened in a converted house at 520 North 26th Street.


In anticipation of such a separation, in January of 1953 the present plot of land was purchased on Western Avenue at a cost of $50,000.


Father Francis Deglman Hall, built in 1955


In the spring of 1956, Creighton began a capital funds campaign, one of its purposes being to raise money for a new building for Prep.


They sold it and the Arthur Building was demolished in 1957 to become a parking lot.


1959: Agnew Hall was opened in a former apartment building.


Gallagher Hall, built in 1961

1961: The College of Business Administration building was opened.


Kiewit Hall, built in 1964


Becker Hall, built in 1965


Criss Health Sciences Center, built in 1966


Rigge Science Center, built in 1968

Gibson won both the National League (NL) Cy Young and NL MVP awards for 1968.


1969: The old St John’s School was renamed Bergan Hall.


The Graduate School conferred its first Ph.D. in 1971.


Reinert Alumni Memorial Library, built in 1980


1920: A building 2439 Burt Street was opened. It was dedicated to Father Markoe in 1982.


In 1992, the largest structural change to the school took place with the addition of the 35,000 sq/ft Henry L. Sullivan, S.J. Campus Center which provided a multiuse venue for Prep students to study, eat, attend Mass, hold dances and socialize.


In 1998, Creighton dedicated the Educational Opportunity Center – Judge Elizabeth Pittman Building on campus to mark the 50th anniversary graduation there.


The room was featured on the May 2007 cover of School Planning and Management Magazine and won the Council for Educational Planners' Impact on Learning Award.

Crawford was hired in 2007, he was alerted by several staff to "the saddle in the attic." When he was eventually taken up to see it, he describes it as, "It was stuck against the wall, under the rafters, on a broken metal typing table, covered by an old tarp," as seen in the photo below.


The Heider Center was dedicated December 12, 2009.


In 2013, the college was named for benefactors Charles and Mary Heider of Omaha.

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Creighton University is 145 years old.

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Creighton University may also be known as or be related to CREIGHTON UNIVERSITY and Creighton University.