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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: Founders’ Day
Yesterday, January 8, was spent in a car driving from Florida to Illinois. I sat in the back seat between our two dogs. For one day, they had my undivided presence and attention. Yesterday was also my birthday. It’s a … Continue reading
On September 18, 1872, Martha Foote (Crow) visited her friends Clara Sittser (Williams) and Kate Hogoboom (Gilbert), They were students at Syracuse University. At that time, there was a men’s fraternity at Syracuse. The Delta Kappa Epsilon chapter was founded in … Continue reading
If I had a top ten list of the fraternity greats, living or dead, with whom I could have dinner, Sarah Ida Shaw Martin would be on that list. Tri Deltas know her as Sarah Ida Shaw; the rest of … 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
Zeta Psi was founded on June 1, 1847 at New York University. John Bradt Yates Sommers, John Moon Skillman, and William Henry Dayton are its founders. The NYU chapter is the Phi chapter. In trying to figure out what to write … Continue reading
Today, May 15, is Alpha Delta Pi’s Founders’ Day. I have been away from a real computer all day and now with about an hour left to spare before it becomes tomorrow, I wish Alpha Delta Pi a Happy Founders’ Day. Alpha Delta … Continue reading
Phi Gamma Delta was founded on May 1, 1848. John Templeton McCarty, Samuel Beatty Wilson, James Elliott, Daniel Webster Crofts, Ellis Bailey Gregg and Naaman Fletcher – the Immortal Six – were students at Jefferson College in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, when they founded … Continue reading