In February 2018, the University of Minnesota Law Library celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Law School building, now known as Walter F. Mondale Hall, with the opening of a commemorative exhibit: "A Foundation in the Law: Celebrating 40 Years at Walter F. Mondale Hall." We are pleased to announce that the exhibit is now available in digital format.

Under Dean Emeritus Robert Stein’s visionary leadership, the Law School moved from Fraser Hall, built in 1928, to a new building on the campus’s West Bank in 1978. The state-of-the-art, award-winning facility provided a functional and attractive space for the continued growth of the Law School’s curriculum, faculty, clinics, law library, and student-centered programs. However, with an expanding faculty and program of legal education, by the mid-1990s the Law School was again facing serious space constraints. Assessing the situation with an eye to functionality and costs, Dean Emeritus E. Thomas Sullivan moved forward with a plan to build an addition rather than opting for a completely new facility. Completed in 2001, the new addition is a bright and open space designed to house student activities, research centers and institutes, and a long-needed café. A focal point of the addition is the Riesenfeld Rare Books Research Center, designed to protect the Law Library’s irreplaceable rare books collection and to provide a scholars’ work area for legal history researchers. Equally important, the addition includes a significant number of classrooms and faculty offices. At the celebration to commemorate the completion of the project in May 2001, the building was rededicated as Walter F. Mondale Hall to honor one of the Law School’s most accomplished and respected alumni, Vice President Walter Mondale ('56).

The Law Library’s digital exhibit, “A Foundation in the Law: Celebrating 40 Years at Walter F. Mondale Hall,” ensures that the story of the Law School building will be preserved permanently as part of the Law Library’s Digital Special Collections. To view the exhibit and learn more about the history of Mondale Hall, please see the menu on the left.

The Riesenfeld Center gratefully acknowledges the support of University of Minnesota Law School Dean Garry Jenkins and Associate Dean Joan Howland in the creation of this exhibit. The digital exhibit is curated by Ian Moret, Patrick Graybill and Ryan Greenwood.