With the beginning of the scholastic year of 1882-83 the faculty
began to make regulations to prevent the formation and existence of
secret fraternities other than the Literary Societies among the
students. In his report to the Board of Trustees in June, 1882,
President Pritchard had brought their attention to the matter in these
For about a year the Faculty have been troubled by the existence of a secret social
and literary club in College, embracing some of the best students of both Societies,
and exerting a harmful influence upon the general interest of the College. Such
organizations will do mischief as they have invariably done wherever they have
existed, and therefore the Faculty earnestly request the Trustees to adopt the
following resolution, that they may be sustained by the authority of the Trustees in
their efforts to break up this pernicious society:
"Resolved: That the existence of Literary or social clubs among the students of
Wake Forest College, other than the two Literary Societies, is declared to be in
violation of the organic law of the College, and the Faculty are hereby authorized,
and required, to enforce this law." 1
The Trustees gave the desired authorization, and in accord with it
the faculty required all students registering thereafter to sign this
statement: "We further promise not to affiliate with or join any secret
society or club without the permission of the presiding officer of the
faculty." 2
1 According to the statement of Professor L. R. Mills given to the author, the
students who were planning to organize the fraternity-said to have been a chapter of
the Kappa Alpha-approached President Pritchard about it. He did not feel authorized
to forbid the organization outright, and the young men went on with it. In the
meantime he wrote to the presidents of a dozen of the foremost educational
institutions in the country where fraternities existed and received replies which
justified the adverse opinion of them he conveyed to the Trustees. The nearest
approval was the statement of President Eliot of Harvard, who said they were a
great evil, but like measles and mumps had to be endured.
Minutes of the Faculty for September 1, 1882. The phrase, "the presiding
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