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About Fran Becque, Ph.D.
Welcome! Chances are good you found this blog by searching for something about fraternities or sororities.
The history of Greek-letter organizations (GLOs) - fraternities and sororities - is one of my great passions. I was the last person anyone would have suspected of joining a sorority in college. I am sure I would have agreed with them, too.
When I made my way to Syracuse University, I saw the houses with the Greek letters that edged Walnut Park, and wished I could tour them. My roommate suggested I sign up for rush (as it was then called, today it’s known as recruitment) and go through the house tour round and then drop out of rush. It sounded like a plan. I didn’t realize that I would end up pledging.
In this blog I will share the history of GLOs and other topics. I wrote a dissertation on “Coeducation and the History of Women’s Fraternities 1867-1902.″ It chronicles the growth of the system and the birth of the National Panhellenic Conference.
My Master's thesis details the history of the fraternity system at Southern Illinois University Carbondale from 1948-1960. The dates are significant ones and the thesis is available on the top menu.
I have done research at the Student Life Archives and have written several histories of University of Illinois fraternity chapters for the Society for the Preservation of Greek Housing.
Other topics having to do with higher education also come into play. P.E.O., a Philanthropic Education Organization, was founded as a collegiate organization. I am a P.E.O. and I like to talk about its history. Colleges with which I have a personal connection - Knox College, Mount Holyoke, Washington and Lee, University of Michigan, Syracuse University, Southern Illinois University Carbondale, to name a few - also find their way into these posts.
Thanks for dropping by! I hope you’ll follow my blog. We who enjoy fraternity and sorority history need to stick together. I put together a Pinterest board about fraternity and sorority history. It is at pinterest.com/glohistory/.
Category Archives: Longwood University
When the Sixth Annual Convention of Sigma Sigma Sigma was held in September of 1909, the Hotel Patten in Chattanooga was only about a year old. The site of the convention was dedicated in 1908. Tri Sigma, which was founded on April … Continue reading
Alpha Sigma Alpha was founded on November 15, 1901 at the State Female Normal School (now Longwood University) in Farmville, Virginia. Its founders had been asked to join some of the other sororities on campus, but they wanted to stay … Continue reading
Kappa Delta was founded on October 23, 1897 at the State Female Normal School (now Longwood University) in Farmville, Virginia. Its founders are Lenora Ashmore Blackiston, Julia Gardiner Tyler Wilson, Sara Turner White and Mary Sommerville Sparks Hendrick. Kappa Delta, along … Continue reading
October 15 is Founders’ Day for both Alpha Chi Omega and Zeta Tau Alpha. In 1885, Alpha Chi Omega was founded at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana. Thirteen years later, in 1898, Zeta Tau Alpha was founded at the State … Continue reading
Tonight’s Vice-Presidential debate will take place at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. Longwood has a prominent place in the history of sororities. Ever heard the phrase “Farmville Four”? It refers to the four NPC groups founded at the Virginia’s State Female … Continue reading
Sigma Sigma Sigma was founded on April 20, 1898, at the State Female Normal School in Farmville, Virginia (now Longwood University). The founders are Lucy Wright, Margaret Batten, Elizabeth Watkins, Louise Davis, Martha Trent Featherston, Lelia Scott, Isabella Merrick, and Sallie … Continue reading
Happy Founders’ Day, Alpha Sigma Alpha! Thank you for giving us NPC’s International Badge Day which, since 1997, has taken place on the first Monday in March. In the spring of 1996, after she wore her Alpha Sigma Alpha pin to … Continue reading
Kappa Delta was founded on October 23, 1897 at the State Female Normal School (now Longwood University) in Farmville, Virginia. Its founders are Lenora Ashmore Blackiston, Sara Turner White, Mary Sommerville Sparks Hendrick., and Julia Gardiner Tyler Wilson, the granddaughter of … Continue reading
Alpha Chi Omega and Zeta Tau Alpha celebrate Founders’ Day on October 15. In 1885, Alpha Chi Omega was founded at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana. Thirteen years later, in 1898, Zeta Tau Alpha was founded at the State Female Normal … Continue reading
Today, April 20, two sororities, Tri Sigma and Delta Xi Phi, celebrate anniversaries. Happy Founders’ Day to you both! On April 20, 1898, at Virginia’s State Female Normal School in Farmville, eight women – Lucy Wright, Margaret Batten, Elizabeth Watkins, Louise Davis, … Continue reading