By the mid-1950s, the plan laid out by President Henry Bennett had taken shape. The student union was completed in 1950 and the library in 1953,
It was during the construction of the library that the part of Washington Street, which had run through campus, was permanently closed. The library remains the centerpiece of the Bennett campus plan
In the photo, above, Bennett is reviewing plans for the library following the completion of the student union, which is pictured in the background.
Though Bennett helped officiate at the library groundbreaking, he and his wife were killed in a plane crash in Iran while on an extended tour of countries in support of President Truman's Point Four Programs to help underprivileged countries.