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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: Phi Kappa Psi
Yesterday morning, I found myself taking the 7:30 a.m. train to Champaign so that I could get some research done for a project I committed myself to early in the year. It needs to be off my to-do list. However, … Continue reading
In 1897, Evalina “Eva” Orrick Bandel graduated from the Woman’s College of Baltimore before it changed its name to Goucher College. During her years there, she joined the Zeta Chapter of Alpha Phi. After graduation, her plans were to study … Continue reading
Phi Kappa Psi was founded on February 19, 1852 in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, at Jefferson College (now Washington and Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania). Phi Kappa Psi’s founders are William Henry Letterman and Charles Page Thomas Moore. Today it celebrates 165 … 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
At the Fraternity and Sorority Archives Conferences, Phi Kappa Psi’s Historian, Michael H. McCoy, “Mike” to us, was an elder statesman. Yet, he was up on the latest in social media and he shared his knowledge freely and with great glee. … Continue reading
Today is the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. President Woodrow Wilson, a Phi Kappa Psi, signed the National Park Service Organic Act on August 25, 1916. I’d like to tell you about an #amazingsororitywoman named Marguerite “Peg” Lindsley (Arnold). She … Continue reading
This past weekend was a fun one for us. The Becque5 clan gained another +1. Officially we are the Becque5 +2 after last fall’s wedding of our daughter. I made the hotel reservations in early January and didn’t think more … Continue reading
(This was originally posted on Friday, February 19. Notices did not go out to subscribers about the posting. As I was out of town with limited computer access, I knew there was a problem, but there was little I could … Continue reading
Phi Kappa Psi was founded on February 19, 1852 in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, at Jefferson College (now Washington and Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania). Phi Kappa Psi’s founders are William Henry Letterman and Charles Page Thomas Moore. For the last few … Continue reading
Sesquicentennial is a big word. It’s a fitting word because it means “of or relating to the one-hundred-and-fiftieth anniversary of a significant event,” according to that big internet dictionary in the sky. Kappa Alpha Order was founded at Washington College, now Washington … Continue reading