The History of the Beta Sigma Chapter
1917: The Founding / Installation
(From the Centennial History of Sigma Chi Fraternity 1855-1955, by Robert M. Collett)
Dr. William B. "Daddy" Ricks, organizer and charter member of the Sigma Chi chapter at North Carolina (law grad 1890), installed the Vanderbilt chapter in 1891 while he was in theology school there (1894 grad). Rev. Ricks helped organize the Sigma Chi chapter at many other universities, including UT in the mid-1910s. (Ricks later served as Grand Consul 1941-43).
Dr. Ricks and James A. Peoples, Vanderbilt 1902, helped several undergraduates at UT to form a local petitioning group for the purpose of getting a Sigma Chi charter. The UT group's charter was officially granted at the June 1917 Grand Chapter in St. Louis (just after the U.S. had declared war on Germany in April 1917).
On Sept. 20, 1917, Grand Quaestor William V. Brothers served as the Installing Officer, assisted by Dr. Ricks, and Grand Consul Henning. Twenty young men were initiated late that day, with a banquet on Sept. 21 at the Atkin Hotel. At the banquet: UT President Brown Ayers and Dean James D. Hopkins, along with a representative from the 7 other fraternities on campus.
Charter members include: Dr. Rufus H. Fitzgerald '19 (later Chancellor of the University of Pittsburg and a Significant Sig); and Dr. Raymond R. Paty '19 (later Chancellor of the University System of Georgia).
Coming soon: List of first initiates.
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