There are more than 900 posts on this blog. Use the search button to find the posts about your organization. If you would like to subscribe, please comment on the latest post with your e-mail address. Don’t worry the comment won’t be seen and I will add you to the subscriber list. You can also join the facebook group where links to the blogs are posted just after the entry is published. Thanks.
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: Fraternity History
Summer is convention season for Greek-Letter Organizations and it has been for more than a century. In the 1800s, conventions tended to take place during the academic year or over the Christmas holiday. While many GLOs have different names for … Continue reading
Today, January 8, is the date of Dr. Charles Richardson’s birth. If he was still alive he’d be a well preserved 151. A Fayetteville, Arkansas, dentist, he did his undergraduate work at Emory & Henry College in Virginia and then studied dentistry … Continue reading
Mary Ann Mobley, Miss America 1959, died yesterday at the age of 75. She was a Chi Omega from the University of Mississippi. In 1960, as the outgoing Miss America, she crowned Lynda Lee Mead. Both were initiated into the Tau chapter … Continue reading
With a new academic year on the horizon, there is a lot going on in the world of fraternities and sororities. Recruitment is in full swing on some campuses and others are preparing for it. The Circle of Sisterhood, that wonderful … Continue reading
I found this gem in an 1880’s University of Kansas student publication, the Helianthus (Helianthus annuus is the common sunflower, the most ubiquitous flower in Kansas). The word “sorosites” was used in contrast to the word “fraternities.” It also tells some interesting history of … Continue reading
A small article in the Southern Illinoisan newspaper prompted me to write a post for the Pi Phi blog. It was about a national historic designation being given to the site of a 1956 crash of two planes over the Grand Canyon. … Continue reading
When I was at the Fraternity and Sorority Archives conference last month, a few of us had a discussion about the “official organs” of our organizations. The first issues of many of the fraternity and sorority magazines state “official organ … Continue reading
I spent the weekend at the convention of the Illinois State Chapter of P.E.O. which took place in Springfield. I had a wonderful time. I rode to and fro with the daughter of our neighbor. She and her family moved back to town a few … Continue reading
For almost all of the time we have been married, Dan and I have lived our lives in 16 week segments, starting first when he was in grad school. Once Dan became a faculty member, the ebb and flow of life … Continue reading
Phi Gamma Delta was founded on May 1, 1848. The “Immortal Six” – John Templeton McCarty, Samuel Beatty Wilson, James Elliott, Daniel Webster Crofts, Ellis Bailey Gregg and Naaman Fletcher – were students at Jefferson College in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, when they founded … Continue reading