Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (UC): The legacy of the Castillo Echeverría family

Last week a ceremony was held at the UC Central Housewhich reflected the bond of friendship forged between the Catholic University and the Castillo Echeverría family. A relationship that began with the contribution of Mr. Fernando Castillo Velasco, as an architecture student at our university, then a teacher, an outstanding professor and later rector between 1967 and 1973. This relationship and personal friendship would later be continued by his wife, Mónica Echeverría. and their children Carmen, Cristián, Consuelo and Fernando José, who were thanked for the generous gesture they have made to the university, by giving us a large amount of documentation that includes photographs, letters, diplomas, architectural plans, press clippings, manuscripts, and videos among others. We receive all this valuable material for its protection, study, preservation and dissemination to future generations.

“The more than 300 folders and 260 boxes of documentation that we have already received and classified in our UC Library System make up the donation and open the door to the intimacy of its protagonists, all of them important characters in the history of our country, whether in the professional, artistic, political, or literary field”- Ignacio Sánchez, rector

It is important to point out that already in 2016 the university received important historical documentation from Ms. Mónica, on a key period in the development of the UC between 1967 and 1973, when Don Fernando served as rector and led the reform university. What was received on this occasion, comes to add to this legacy that is an important part of the history of our university. It should be noted that this donation from the family not only includes documentation of our former rector, in his work as an architect, politician, and teacher, but also the important legacy of his wife Mónica Echeverría, writer, playwright, feminist activist and tireless defender from the human rights; and Mrs. Flora Yáñez, her mother, an outstanding Chilean writer of short stories and novels.

This important documentation, of great historical value, allows us to build and preserve memory, while making it available for community access. The more than 300 folders and 260 boxes of documentation that we have already received and classified in our UC Library System make up the donation and open the door to the intimacy of its protagonists, all of them important characters in the history of our country, whether in the professional, artistic, political, or literary field.

The profound words of Carmen Castillo at the ceremony, -who spoke on behalf of the family-, highlighted the value of personal ties, affection and friendship. This makes it possible to maintain and project the presence of people when they are loved, respected and especially when they are kept in memory and memory alive, which is essentially based on friendship and deep appreciation. It could not have better represented the feeling of the institution and especially in the memory that I personally have of Don Fernando, Mrs. Mónica and their family, with multiple stories and anecdotes of two people who loved Chile and the Catholic University, who formed a great family and who fell in love with their causes and projects, to dedicate their lives to carrying them out.

“We can only thank the Castillo-Echeverría family for their great generosity in entrusting us with such a valuable family legacy, which by the way has special significance, as it represents part of the history of a great rector, who led the institution in a very important period of the UC”- Ignacio Sánchez, rector

These files that the Castillo-Echeverría family gives us have already been carefully inventoried and will later be digitized to be included in the UC Patrimonial Catalog. The documentation will be kept in the San Joaquín Campus Humanities Library. This valuable donation comes to complement the UC Historical Archive, which includes documentation of great historical value emanating from the different activities of the university, and which has been enriched by the recent donation of outstanding figures from the national artistic and literary sphere, who constitute part of the cultural heritage of our country.

For us, at the university, we can only thank the Castillo-Echeverría family for their great generosity in entrusting us with such a valuable family legacy, which by the way has special significance, as it represents part of the history of a great rector, who led the institution in a very important period of the Catholic University. With this living memory and with the understanding of the history that we have passed in more than 134 years since our foundation, we project the future development of the university.

Comments are closed.