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   Delta Zeta, founded in 1902 at Miami University of Oxford, Ohio, originally consisted of Alfa Lloyd, Mary Collins, Anna Louise Keen, Julia Lawrence Bishop, Mabelle M. Minton, and Anne Dial Simmons. It was not uncommon for young women to gather in the homes of their friends and enjoy social affairs; however, they wished to form a campus organization to continue their enjoyment of social affairs. Many women found the idea of a sorority quite appealing, and their wishes came true when they established the Alpha chapter of Delta Zeta.

   As the six women planned, they chose as their flower a new hybrid rose becoming very popular, the Killarney rose. From this they drew the logical colors of rose and green to represent their sorority. They applied for and received Articles of Incorporation from the Department of State of Ohio. The six chartered members announced their sorority to the student body at an elaborate "Rose Reception" held in Alfa Lloyd's home. However strong in conviction and determined they were, the six coeds endured much difficulty in their first year as they attempted to establish the sorority at Miami University. Delta Zeta history written in 1934 allows one to imagine the difficulty the six founders faced:

      "In an institution of the size Miami was then, no such undertaking could go unnoticed by the other members of the student body. The activities of these six girls came to the notice of the "Senators," an organization of men from the various fraternities, and a sort of self-constituted Board of Regulators. They took it upon themselves to discipline these presumptuous young women, who would fain assume for themselves the honor of emulating the men's fraternities, and many were the tricks they played on the harassed girls. One stole the constitution from the very hand of they secretary as she walked out of the president's office. It was with much delight that the Founders tell of the pursuit of the villain by Dr. Benton himself, and his winning back the precious document, not because of his sprinting ability, but by virtue of his official position."
   Despite this original persecution, the Delta Zeta Sorority was formed and incorporated under the laws of the State of Ohio. In time, the men's fraternities understood that the members of Delta Zeta were earnest and ceased to poke fun at the group, but instead even looked upon it with pride as another organization to establish one more Miami tradition. The Articles of Incorporation outline the purpose of the sorority to be:

   "To build up the character and cultivate the truest and deepest friendship among its members: to stimulate one another in the pursuit of knowledge and the attainment of a high standard of morality: to inculcate elevated sentiments and noble principles, and to afford each other every possible assistance and to incite all to the attainment of a memorable fame."

   Thus it was that six of the first coeds on the Miami campus issued this formal statement: "Grateful to God for His bountiful gifts, rich blessings, and tender mercies do ordain and establish this Constitution of the Delta Zeta Sorority.

Information for this History Site provided by the Delta Zeta Sorority pledge handbook.


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