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Original Headquarters Building
Cornerstone Ceremony

President Dwight D. Eisenhower lays the Cornerstone
President Dwight D. Eisenhower lays the Cornerstone

In preparing for this ceremony, a careful selection of documents and other materials for sealing within the cornerstone of the new Central Intelligence Agency Building has been made. At some future date, when opened, the box will provide items of historic interest concerning the Central Intelligence Agency, and appropriate items in connection with today's ceremony at which the President of the United States honors us by laying the cornerstone.

Contents of the cornerstone box include:

  1. Memorandum for President Franklin D. Roosevelt from Major General William J. Donovan, Director of the Office of Strategic Services, dated 18 November 1944, regarding the establishment of a permanent centralized intelligence service; and Memorandum from President Roosevelt to General Donovan, dated 5 April 1945, directing that General Donovan discuss his plan with the appropriate officials of the Government.

  2. President Harry S. Truman's Executive Letter of 22 January 1946, establishing the National Intelligence Authority and the Central Intelligence Group.

  3. Statement of General (then Lieutenant General) Hoyt S. Vandenberg, Director of Central Intelligence, before the Senate Committee on Armed Services, on 29 April 1947, in support of the sections of the proposed National Security Act of 1947 to establish the Central Intelligence Agency.

  4. Text and Explanation of Statutes and Executive Orders relating specifically to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), including Enabling and Appropriations Acts for the construction of the new CIA Building.

  5. Reproduction of the CIA seal and its official description.

  6. "William J. Donovan and the National Security," a speech by Allen W. Dulles, Director of Central Intelligence, to the Erie County Bar Association, Buffalo, New York, 4 May 1959.

  7. An aerial photograph of the area of the CIA Building site.

  8. Drawings of the CIA Building as it will appear when completed.

  9. The Program, a recording, and photographs of the Cornerstone Ceremony.

  10. Microfilm copies of daily and weekly newspapers of 3 November 1959.

Above: Text detailing the contents of the box enclosed in the CIA Original Headquarters Building cornerstone. Excerpted from the Cornerstone Ceremony program, 3 November 1959.