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The Morgan Library and Museum

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Pierpont Morgan: Banker

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About the Morgan | History of the Morgan

Pierpont Morgan: Collector    1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8

The most far-reaching consequence of Jack Morgan's stewardship was his decision to establish the Morgan as a public institution. In February 1924 Morgan transferred its ownership to a board of trustees along with a $1.5 million endowment. The indenture of trust provided for the use of the collections for research, the establishment of a gallery of art, and other such activities as the trustees deemed appropriate and desirable. The institution became a public reference library by a special act of the legislature of the State of New York, and Belle Greene was named its first director. Since Greene's retirement in 1948, there have been four directors of the Library—Frederick B. Adams, Jr. (1948–69), Charles Ryskamp (1969–87), Charles E. Pierce, Jr. (1987–2007), and William M. Griswold (2008–present).

What principally attracted Pierpont Morgan were beautiful works of art that also had a place in history. As The Morgan Library & Museum continues to increase its holdings—through purchases, generous gifts, and bequests—it does so in the same spirit.

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The programs of The Morgan Library & Museum are made possible with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Background images: Photography by Todd Eberle unless otherwise noted. © 2006 Todd Eberle.