|Title:||Alpha Phi Collection|
|Size:||2 boxes (1.5 linear feet)|
|Abstract:||The Alpha Phi Collection contains correspondence, notes, event materials and publications from 1879 to 1986.|
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Ave., Suite 600
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010
The Alpha Phi International Fraternity is a sorority that was founded at Syracuse University in 1872. It was founded by Clara Bradley, Florence Chidester, Martha Foote, Ida Gilbert, Jane Higham, Kate Hogoboom, Grace Hubbell, Rena Michaels, Louise Shepard, and Clara Sittser, who are often referred to as the “original ten.” The sorority was formed in order to create a social and intellectual group of women in solidarity during the early years of the University.
The organization was not initially recognized as a Greek letter society and was instead called the Michaelanean Society, a name honoring Rena Michaels, the first president of the society. Meetings were initially held secretly in the rooms of the sorority’s various members, but they quickly moved to an office space on South Salina Street. During this time the first Alpha Phi publication was also established, the Alpha Phi Literary Cabinet. The publication was a quarterly journal that was handwritten and included contributions from members of the organization.
In January of 1873, the charter for incorporation was finally signed and Alpha Phi became the fourth national sorority in the United States and the Alpha chapter of Alpha Phi. In 1874 their incorporation approval was granted and the sorority began looking for more permanent space for their headquarters. Meetings were held in a room in the Onondaga County Savings Bank from 1879 until 1884, when Alpha Phi rented a full house on 613 Irving Street for the purposes of both meeting and residency. In 1886 the sorority bought and built its own house at 207 University Place, which became the first house for a women’s Greek letter organization in the nation. In 1887 Alpha Phi’s document of incorporation was finally recorded into the New York State Archives and the sorority’s second publication, Alpha Phi Quarterly, was established in 1888. In 1910 Alpha Phi sold their house to Syracuse University and moved to 308 Walnut Place, where the sorority is located today. The Alpha Phi Foundation was established in 1956. It was a philanthropic trust with the goal of awarding grants specifically for scholarship and cardiac aid. The foundation is still a part of the sorority today.
In 1962 the sorority’s original house at 207 University Place was torn down to make way for the building of Newhouse. The University helped Alpha Phi to make commemorative gavels out of the cherry and birch wood from the original staircase of the house. The gavels were given to all of the chapters in the United States and Canada.
The Alpha Phi Collection contains material from 1879 to 1986 and is divided into three series:
The Correspondence and Notes Series consists of letters between sorority members, meeting notes, and short creative writings.
The Event Material Series contains information regarding Alpha Phi’s bronze tablet on the Hall of Languages, various invitations, and miscellaneous banquet materials.
The Publications Series mainly comprises the Alpha Phi Literary Cabinet and also includes the Alpha Phi Quarterly, a directory, and other collections of writings. As the nature of the Alpha Phi Literary Cabinet is handwritten, it is difficult to conclude which collections of writings are published versions or drafts. Best efforts have been taken to determine which collections are final versions.
Please note that the collection is housed off-site, and advance notice is required to allow time to have the materials brought to the Reading Room on campus.
Written permission must be obtained from the Syracuse University Archives and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.
The Syracuse University Archives holds information about Alpha Phi and its house in the Clipping Files and Photograph Collection.
Preferred citation for this material is as follows:
Alpha Phi Collection,
Syracuse University Libraries
The Archives acquired the Alpha Phi Collection from donations by James W. Harrison in 2002, the Nottingham Loveland family in 2004, and Ruth Stafford Peale in 2007.
Materials were rehoused in acid-free folders and boxes.
Created by: Maggie Teschler
|Correspondence and Notes|
|Box 1||Correspondence 1891-1902|
|Box 1||Notes undated|
|Box 1||Alpha Phi Bronze Tablet 1931-1939|
|Box 1||Invitations 1876-1912|
|Box 1||Miscellaneous Materials 1872-1964|
|Box 1||Sponsorship Form undated|
|Box 1||Alpha of Alpha Phi 1930|
|Box 1||Alpha Phi Alumnae Directory 1986|
|Box 1||Alpha Chapter Magazine 1928|
|Alpha Phi Literary Cabinet|
|Box 1||March 1889|
|Box 1||1898 (2 folders)|
|Box 1||1901 (2 folders)|
|Box 1||March 1911|
|Box 2||Alpha Phi Literary Cabinet Covers 1884-1904|
|Alpha Phi Literary Cabinet Incomplete Journal Content|
|Box 2||circa 1887|
|Box 2||1895 (2 folders)|
|Box 2||circa 1896|
|Box 2||circa 1908|
|Box 2||circa 1911|
|Box 2||undated (10 folders)|
|Box 2||The Alpha Phi Quarterly 1898|
|Box 2||The Alpha Phi Quarterly 1986|
|Box 2||The Alpha Phi Quarterly 1987|
|Box 2||The Freshman Spread Eagle 1899|
|Box 2||The History of the Alpha Phi Fraternity, 1872-1902 by Ruth Sanders Thomson 1943|
|Box 2||The History of the Alpha Phi International Fraternity, 1872-1930 1931|
|Box 2||Milestones 1921-1927|
|Box 2||Secret Magazine 1929|
|Box 2||Songbook 1877-1881|
|Box 2||Songs of Alpha Phi 1972|