Presidents of the College of the Holy Cross
Rev. James Ryder, S.J.
Second President of Holy Cross
1845 - 1848
James Ryder was born in Dublin, Ireland on October 8, 1800. After the death of his father, he came to the United States with his mother and enrolled in Georgetown College in 1813. Two years later he entered the Society of Jesus at Whitemarsh, MD. He was sent with Rev. Mulledy and five other Jesuits to Rome for philosophical and theological studies. He was ordained a priest in Rome in 1825.
Rev. Ryder became known as a great administrator and eloquent preacher. He served twice as President of Georgetown College from 1840 to 1845 and again from 1848 to 1851. Concurrently, he was Provincial of the Maryland Province from 1843 to 1845.
In 1845 he became President of Holy Cross and during his presidency he added the East wing to the original Fenwick building. He left Holy Cross in 1848 and served in Jesuit churches in Virginia and Pennsylvania.
He died at the Jesuit church of St. Joseph in Philadelphia on January 12, 1860.