Phi Delta Theta       North Dakota Alpha Founding      by Tim Shea 1084


Phi Delta Theta

North Dakota Alpha Founding

by Tim Shea 1084

On January 3, 1913, the Phi Delta Theta Chicago General Convention granted a charter to the members of the Varsity Bachelors Club.  The chapter was installed on April 19, 1913.  The charter members were D.B.  McDonald, O.O. Wilcox, G.L. Koehn, A.B. Hemp, P.R. Bangs, O.R. Preble, F.J.  Brockoff, R.J. Larson, J.B. Crary, A.M.  Carr, S.R. Campbell, C.J. Glaspel, J.H. McKnight, E.A. Fisher, W.G. Poole, John Sad, M.V. Traynor, O.T. Owen, J.G.  Harris, J.D. O'Reilly, V.H. Sprague, L.G. Tellner, J.H.  Forster, M.H. Mason, and F.B. Froebel.

On December 10, 1907 the Varsity Bachelor Club adopted by-laws and became legally a corporation in North Dakota.  47 VBC brothers were initiated into PDT at the installation on April 17,1913.

This quote is from a letter by D. Bruce McDonald to PDT, written 1912.  "Since the organization of the club (VBC), its members have served the university in every branch of student activity.  Every manager of the football team, every captain save two, every president of the athletic association save three, every president of the local oratorical association and every president of the western league of oratory, every manager of the Weekly Student, save three, have been bachelors.  Every debating team has had 1 to 3 bachelors, and every state oratorical contest won by the university has been won by a bachelor.

Great institutions, such as Cornell,  Harvard, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, have called members of the club into the councils of their faculty."

A letter from Walter B. Palmer, one of the second founders of Phi Delta Theta, in February 1911, stated about the house. "It is a finer house than any chapter house of Phi Delta Theta I have ever seen ... if we can acquire the prestige and property, the brains and loyalty and enterprise of the Varsity bachelors Club, we will be entrenched so firmly in the two Dakotas that no fraternity can ever rival us in either university. "
VBC used a pledge pin that had the shape of a square, it was divided into two triangles.  One of red, the other of black.

North Dakota Alpha took the initiative in organizing an Inter-Fraternity Council (IFC) at UND in 1914.  When Phi Beta Kappa was installed at UND, PDT had 11 initiates, more then any other organization.  Delta Gamma Sorority was installed at UND in ceremonies held in the Phi Delta Theta house in 1916.  In November of 1917, we only had 11 brothers return to UND.   Of the 38 actives, we had in June, 22 of them were in the armed services to help with WWI.  Of the 22, only 4 were drafted.  By the end of WWI a total of 73 brothers from North Dakota Alpha had been in the armed services.