I’ve written about the founding of Sigma Pi and the discovery that a Kappa Alpha Theta, Charlotte Northcraft Malotte, an instructor at Vincennes University, played a major role in the founding (see http://wp.me/p20I1i-236).
Vincennes, Indiana, is in the southwest corner of Indiana. We have been known to stop for gas in Vincennes, Indiana, on our way home from the east coast. It’s not a very big town, and that’s way I was both touched and tickled when I found the following items in a 1921 Emerald of Sigma Pi.
The fraternity’s eighth convocation celebrating 25 years of existence was to take place in Vincennesfrom December 27-30, 1922:
The reasons dictating this choice are largely sentimental. It seemed fitting that the first quarter-century mark should be celebrated in the birthplace of the fraternity, and that a breath of life, however passing, should be breathed for a moment into the being of Alpha Chapter. It was also believed that delegates would find it interesting and instructive to learn more about the first seat of the organization, making the Convocation not only a legislative gathering, but a reminder of the past. To carry out this idea more fully it is planned to have an exhibit of early charters, pins, and rituals, and if possible to show them in some of the university rooms which were used by the founders in their first meetings.
From a practical point of view, Vincennes is equally suitable as the place for a Convocation. It is accessible, and lies in a fairly central position as regards the mileage from all chapters. The date of the Convocation was settled at the last Convention, which changed the time of meeting from spring to the Christmas
holidays in order to give more visitors an opportunity of attending.
This info on how to get to Vincennes from active chapters of the fraternity, gives a glimpse into what train travel was like in 1921. Today, if we travel by train, are on Amtrak. Imagine having to figure this train travel puzzle before the internet:
Following is a complete explanation of how to reach Vincennes from any of the active chapters. The numbers given refer to the numbers on the map. Number 1 is Vincennes, Number 2, Bloomington, Ind.
3. Phi Chapter, Champaign, Ill., to Odin (20) on the Illinois Central, Odin to Vincennes on the B. & O., 201 miles.
4. Gamma Chapter, Columbus, Ohio, to Indianapolis (33) on Pennsy, Indianapolis to Vincennes on Pennsy, 298 miles.
5-6. Delta Chapter, Philadelphia, Pa., to Indianapolis (33) on Pennsy, Indianapolis to Vincennes on Pennsy, 847 miles.
7. Epsilon Chapter, Athens, Ohio, to Vincennes on B. & O., 347 miles.
8. Zeta Chapter, Ada, Ohio, to Columbus (4) on Pennsy, Columbus to Indianapolis (33) on Pennsy, Indianapolis to Vincennes on Pennsy, 405 miles. 9. Eta Chapter, La Fayette, Ind., to Mitchell, Ind.(35) on Monon, Mitchell to Vincennes on B. & O., 198 miles.
10. Theta Chapter, State College, Pa., on Bellefonte Central to Sandbury to Harrisburg (30) on Pennsy, Harrisburg to Indianapolis (33) through Pittsburgh (29) and Columbus (4) on Pennsy, Indianapolis to Vincennes on Pennsy.
11. Iota Chapter, Berkeley, Cal., to Ogden, Utah (27), on the Southern Pacific, Ogden to Omaha, Neb. (23), Union Pacific, Omaha to Chicago (28) on C. R. I. & P., C. B. & Q., C. M. & St. P., C. & N. M., Chicago to Odin, Ill. (20), on I. C., Odin to Vincennes on B. & O., 2,582 miles.
12. Lambda Chapter, Gambier, Ohio, to Columbus (4) on Pennsy, and follow same route as Gamma, 357 miles.
13. Mu Chapter, Ithaca, N. Y., to Owego, N. Y. (31) on D. L. Si W., Owego to Buffalo (34) on Erie, Buffalo to Pittsburgh on Pennsy, and follow same as Theta from Pittsburgh, 981 miles.
14. Nu Chapter, Lancaster, Pa., to Indianapolis (33) on Pennsy, Indianapolis to Vincennes on Pennsy, 779 miles.
15. Xi Chapter, Iowa City, Iowa, to Chicago (28) on C. R. I. & P., Chicago to Odin, 111. (20), on Illinois Central, Odin to Vincennes on the B. & O., 564 miles.
16. Pi Chapter, Salt Lake City to Ogden, Utah (27) by D. & R. G., Ogden to Omaha, etc., as from Iota.
17. Omicron Chapter, New Orleans, to Odin, Ill. (20), on I. C., Odin to Vincennes on B. & O., 763 miles.
18. Rho Chapter, West Raleigh, N. C., to Washington, D. C. (21), on Sea Board Air Line, Washington to Vincennes on B. & O., 997 miles.
Other numbers are as follows: St. Louis, 22; Pueblo, 24; Denver, 25; Kansas City, 26, on the southern route from Pi, which is rather longer than by way of Ogden; Richmond, Va., 32; Cincinnati, Ohio, 36, and Louisville, Ky., 37. If chapters are able to figure shorter routes than those worked out above, they will be expected to take them; and mileage in excess of the above routes is not likely to be approved by the Grand Treasury.
© Fran Becque, www.fraternityhistory.com, 2017. All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed this post, please sign up for updates. Also follow me on twitter @GLOHistory and Pinterest www.pinterest.com/glohistory/