I am not an easy person to render speechless. However, the women of the Iowa State University of Pi Beta Phi did just that on Sunday evening.
While I was at Pi Phi’s Leadership Academy in July, a member of the chapter was in my facilitation group. I told her I would be in Iowa in late October for a meeting that started on a Monday morning. I would arrive on Sunday afternoon and would be able to share my love of history with the chapter if something could be arranged for late on Sunday afternoon and evening. Even though it was the start of Homecoming week, the chapter was able to set up a time for me to tour the chapter archives, ooh and ah and give them more information about their chapter’s historical treasures, and talk about fraternity heritage. The Exec Board took me on a tour of campus and then to dinner before the fraternity heritage program.
I loved seeing Catt Hall, named for Carrie Chapman Catt, a very early member of the Pi Phi chapter at Iowa State. I found the brick that the Pi Beta Phi Fraternity purchased. I’ve looked through the literature about the dedication of the building when it took place about 20 years ago. I can tell you which Pi Phi Grand Council member attended the festivities (Lou Ann Carter) and I recall her recap to me when she filled me in on the events of the dedication.
I spoke to the chapter and alumnae about two of my favorite Pi Phis, one a Vermont Beta named Grace and the other an Iowa Gamma named Carrie, whose paths crossed on an April day in 1924. Imagine my surprise and gratitude when after my talk the Chapter President presented me with a certificate stating that I would soon have my own brick in the Plaza of Heroines in front of Catt Hall!
Speechless! Thank you Iowa Gamma and Ames Alumnae. I am grateful for your generosity.
© Fran Becque, www.fraternityhistory.com, 2016. All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed this post, please sign up for updates. Also follow me on twitter @GLOHistory and Pinterest www.pinterest.com/glohistory/