Coinciding with the launch of Canisius High School's celebration of 150 years of Jesuit education in Buffalo will be the publication of Blue Doors: 150 Years of Jesuit Education at Canisius High School, a nearly 600-page narrative history of the school written by Paul Cumbo '97.
"It's exciting to share the cover image in advance of its publication this fall," says Paul. The cover was designed by Paul's brother, Academy-Award-nominated graphic artist David Cumbo '00. "Starting with a photo of the blue doors he painstakingly refined the image with fine design details, including digital restoration of the doors, incorporation of the beige bricks, and the engraved, gold-toned wood lettering."
Work on the book itself began three years ago when Canisius Principal Andrea Tyrpak-Endres and President Fr. David Ciancimino, S.J. commissioned him to write a sesquicentennial history. It took shape gradually, incorporating thousands of pages of archival resources and many interviews. Blue Doors includes an enhanced republication of the 1948 master's thesis by Nick Kessler '28, used with permission of his daughter, longtime faculty member Gretchen Kessler. The book is co-dedicated to Mr. Kessler and to Fr. Ronald Sams, S.J. '46, who also lent knowledge and perspective through interviews prior to his passing in 2017.
"It has been an honor to undertake this project," Paul says. "It has been a humbling task. Certainly no one author can tell the entire story of Canisius High School, but the attempt has deepened my appreciation for our school's legacy. Moreover, it has reinforced my belief in the value Jesuit education has brought to our city and nation."
The publication date will be announced soon. Blue Doors will be available online in paperback and as a Kindle eBook, as well as in the Canisius Campus Store. Signed editions will be available at a launch event to be held at the school in the coming months.