Skip to main content
Please contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections for assistance with accessing these materials.

Thomas M. King, SJ papers

Identifier: GTM-130716

Content Description

Correspondence and source materials relating to Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. Includes material (primarily printed articles and some memoranda) on abortion rights, Georgetown University student group GU Choice, and Catholic identity.


  • 1963 - 2002
  • Majority of material found within 1981 - 1993

Conditions Governing Access

Most manuscripts collections at the Georgetown University Booth Family Center for Special Collections are open to researchers; however, restrictions may apply to some collections. Collections stored off site require a minimum of three days for retrieval. For use of all manuscripts collections, researchers are advised to contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections in advance of any visit.

Biographical / Historical

Thomas Mulvihill King, S.J., was born on May 9, 1929, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 1951, Father King entered the Society of Jesus after earning a Bachelor’s degree in English at the University of Pittsburgh. He continued his studies as a Jesuit at Fordham University and Woodstock College; and was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1964. On completion of a doctorate in theology at the University of Strasbourg in 1968, Father King joined the faculty of the Theology Department at Georgetown University where he taught until a few years before his death on June 23, 2009.

At Georgetown University, Father King was well known among Georgetown students and alumni for offering Mass every night from Sunday to Friday, in Dahlgren Chapel on the main campus, a tradition he started in 1969. In 1999, the student newspaper The Hoya, declared Father King "Georgetown's Man of the Century", noting that "no one has had a more significant presence on campus and effect on students than Father King."

In keeping with Catholic moral teaching, Father King took a strong stance against abortion and euthanasia. He co-founded the University Faculty of Life group aiming to create a dialogue on life issues in the academic community. He was also founder of the science and religion group Cosmos and Creation; as well as a member of Pax Christi, a group opposed to war and capital punishment.

Father King was a scholar of the Trappist monk Thomas Merton, as well as Jesuit priest and paleontologist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. He wrote prolifically on both and was a conduit and facilitator for the acquisition of several collections relating to the latter by the Booth Family Center for Special Collections. In particular, Father King helped to bring to the Library, a collection of the original letters written by Teilhard de Chardin to Lucile Swan. These were eventually published in the volume “The Letters of Teilhard de Chardin and Lucile Swan” (1993), co-edited by Father King.

Sources: - Wikipedia - Davis, Rebekah. "Thomas M. King Dies at 80." Washington Post, Washington, D.C. 28 June 2009. Print.


0.63 Linear Feet (3 boxes)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Father King or transferred from Georgetown University Jesuit Community after his death in June 2009.

Related Materials

Consult Georgetown University Archives files for additional information on Father Thomas M. King.

Thomas M. King, SJ, Papers
Georgetown University Library Booth Family Center for Special Collections.
December 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Georgetown University Manuscripts Repository

Lauinger Library, 5th Floor
37th and O Streets, N.W.
Washington DC 20057