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Lyons, Charles W. (1868-1939)



  • Existence: 1868 - 1939

Biographical Note

Charles W. Lyons, Jesuit, professor, and Boston College president.

Lyons, the fourteenth president of Boston College, was born on January 31, 1868, in Boston. He attended public schools in Boston and entered the Society of Jesus in August 1890. Lyons taught at a number of institutions before and after his ordination in 1904, including Gonzaga College, Georgetown University, and Loyola College in Maryland. After ordination, Lyons acted as the Prefect of Discipline at Georgetown University for a year, then went on to teach metaphysics and political economy at St. Francis Xavier College in New York City. In 1907, he taught psychology and political economy at Boston College. Lyons spent a brief time in 1909 as the president of Gonzaga College in Washington DC, followed by five years as president of St. Joseph's College in Philadelphia before becoming Boston College president in January 1914. Lyons was the last president to serve as Father Rector to both Boston College and Boston College High School. Lyons's presidency was notable for his oversight of continued construction on the Chestnut Hill campus, started by his predecessor Thomas Ignatius Gasson, and also for his leadership of the College during World War I. Lyons left Boston College in July 1919, though he returned in 1922 to teach metaphysics for two years before becoming president of Georgetown University. Lyons moved back to Boston once more in 1928 and joined the Mission band for eight years before retiring to Weston College in 1936. Lyons died on January 31, 1939, on his seventy-first birthday.

Social Networks and Archival Context (SNAC) Identifier

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Charles W. Lyons, SJ, President's Office records


The President's office records of Charles W. Lyons, SJ, fourteenth president of Boston College, are composed of correspondence, memos, and writings that reflect his five year presidency as well as the wartime and post-World War I student military groups on campus during that period.

Restrictions on access

Collection is open for research; portions available digitally.

Dates: 1914 - 1979; Majority of material found within 1914 - 1919