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The exercises for the dedication of the Semitic Museum were held yesterday afternoon in the large lecture room of the Museum. There were about two hundred invited guests present, including members of the Faculty, representatives of other colleges, and benefactors of the Museum.
Professor D. G. Lyon, curator of the Museum, spoke first, describing briefly its collections and sketching its history from the time the first objects were collected in 1889. In 1899 Mr. Jacob H. Schiff offered $50,000 to provide a building for the rapidly increasing collections, and in addition, other contributions amounting to about $20,000 have been received, most of which is still available to supply further equipment.
Professor C. E. Norton next extended the congratulations and thanks of the University to the donors of the building, and to those whose labor and care has made the work a success.
Following Professor Norton, Dr. Cyrus Adler of Washington, spoke of the Museum as the first in the world to be devoted exclusively to Semitic study. Professor G. F. Moore read brief extracts of letters from Professor Toy and others, and was followed by Mr. Jacob H. Schiff, the donor of the building, who as chairman of the visiting committee of the Semitic Department, formally transferred the building to the University. In conclusion, President Eliot, on behalf of the Corporation, accepted the gift, which he called the storehouse of a great historical past and said should be an inspiration for the future.
The exercises were followed by an inspection of the collections by the guests, and refreshments were served in the Palestinian room on the third floor.
The Museum will be open to the public today for the first time.
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