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The Marden Memorial Library at Presbyterian Ladies College erected by ex-pupils commemorates headmaster John Marden. A brass memorial tablet on the wall opposite the entrance doors records the erection of the building and its purpose. 

Dr. John Marden B.A., LL.D (9 April 1855 – 29 October 1924) was an Australian Headmaster, pioneer of women's education, and Presbyterian elder.

In 1887 Marden was appointed first headmaster and principal of the Presbyterian Ladies' College, Sydney. He opened the school with Miss M. McCormick as lady superintendent in 1888 in a leased house at Ashfield; there were thirty pupils including fifteen boarders.

In 1890 the Presbyterian Church in New South Wales bought Anthony Hordern's house at Croydon. There Marden consolidated the school and, keenly interested in horticulture, laid out beautiful gardens and playing fields.

In 1916, under Marden's guidance, the Presbyterian Church bought fifty acres (20 ha) at Pymble for £15,000 and established a sister school, administered until 1929 by a single council. Marden was headmaster of both schools.

The grounds of the Presbyterian Ladies College, Croydon, were thronged with present pupils, ex-students, and friends of the school yesterday afternoon on the occasion of the celebration of Jersey Day. Set apart annually for the reunion of "old girls," the day was invested with additional importance this year, on account of the ceremony connected with the official opening of the John Marden Memorial Library. Erected to the memory of the Dr. John Marden, who was the first principal of the college, the library is the gift of the ex-students. The ceremony, which took place before the portico of the library, against a background of gumtrees and flag-draped walls, commenced with the presentation of a bouquet of red roses and carnations to Mrs. Marden. Mr. R. W. Gillespie (chairman of the council) presided, and introduced Miss E. M. Buzacott, who read the report of the memorial committee. The report stated that the decision to erect the library had been formed at a meeting of the Ex-Students' Union in November, 1924, after the death of Dr. Marden. All ex students had been circularised, with the result that subscriptions had been sent from all over the world. The union had presented a thousand books, and there had been several gifts of furniture, but even yet the furnishing of the llbrary was in an incomplete state.

Mr. Michael Grant (chairman of works) said that the ex-students were to be congratulated on their success in raising a memorial which would be such an encouragement to future pupils of the school. It was a fitting tribute to the memory of their late principal, who had always striven to inculcate in his pupils the desire for the study and acquisition of noble ideals. Dr. McQueen (principal of the college) spoke of Dr. Marden as he had known him, personally, and said that his shrewd kindliness and tenacious adherence to ideals had laid the foundation for the ultimate success of the college. 
The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW), 11 March 1927. 


Address:Boundary Street, Presbyterian Ladies College, Croydon, 2132
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.881042
Long: 151.116322
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Structure
Monument Theme:People
Monument Designer:Arthur Wm. Anderson (architect)
Monument Manufacturer:Mr A. Travis (builder)


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Thursday 10th March, 1927
Source: MA, ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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