The Books

Official Kappa Kappa Gamma histories, directories, songbooks, and publications other than “The Key”. “The Key” has its own section!

Signed History of Kappa Kappa Gamma Fraternity 1870-1930

First, the story of how I came into possession of this treasure.

I had desperately wanted to add one of these 1930 histories to my collection. However, I had been outbid on each one that I had seen on eBay. In frustration at yet another loss, I headed to Amazon Used Books, hoping to be lucky enough to find one that I could purchase outright rather than risk losing in a bidding war.

As providence would have it, I was in luck. The seller was very honest, as he described the book’s condition in full detail. Marks on the cover. A loose spine. Writing on the pages. The condition was listed as “Fair to Poor”. Sighing to myself, I decided that a history in poor condition was better than no history at all. I made the purchase.

When the history arrived, I opened the package to examine my “fair to poor condition” purchase.

I was barely a few pages in when I saw something that stopped my heart. I stared in disbelief. Upon confirming that I was not, in fact, hallucinating, I remember sinking to the floor in my foyer with my heart pounding.

The “writing on the pages” that the seller mentioned was comprised of many signatures. One of the signatures is that of one of our founders, Mary Louise Bennett Boyd.

I was able to confirm the authenticity of the handwritten signature easily by comparing it to the printed copy of Mary Louise Bennett Boyd’s signature on page V of the history.

I was amazed to discover that the book was filled with signatures of notable Kappas. Further research will hopefully help ascertain at what event this book was signed.

True, it isn’t in the greatest condition. Then again, it’s nearly 89 years old!

I couldn’t believe my eyes…

The lovely forward by the Boyd ladies, featuring a copy of the signature of Mary Louise Bennett Boyd, allowed me to confirm that the handwritten one was genuine.
Mary Louise Bennett Boyd signed the charter for the Alpha Chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma in 1870. She has always been listed as “Alpha 1”, the first name on the permanent fraternity roll of membership.
Signature of Hannah Isabelle Drew Fowler, Upsilon Chapter at Northwestern University. Initiated 10/3/1892.
Bertha Plimpton Richmond Chevalier – Grand Secretary 1894-1896, Grand President 1896-1900

 

May Cynthia Whiting Westerman – Grand President 1902-1904, National President 1922-1926, and one of the authors of the history itself.

The history was gifted from one Kappa to another and was signed by many other Kappas throughout.

Catalogue of the Kappa Kappa Gamma Fraternity, 1898

This is the oldest book in my collection at 121 years old as of 2019.

Compiled and edited by the Beta Eta Chapter at Stanford University, this catalogue was published by Kappa’s Grand Council in 1898.

The contents include a preface explaining that “The Grand Council of Kappa Kappa Gamma take pleasure in giving the present catalogue to the fraternity with the hope that it may aid members to perfect the fraternity records, to obtain a better knowledge of the alumnae and to organize alumnae associations.”

Included in this very thorough catalogue is an early history of Kappa Kappa Gamma, a list of the Conventions held from 1871 to 1896, and a list of Grand Officers from 1881 to 1898. A complete catalogue of Kappa Kappa Gamma chapters follows, including dates of installation and membership rolls through 1898.

This book is absolutely beautiful, and the photos do not do it justice. It is in remarkable shape for its age.

The book was owned by Stella Adelia Vaughn, a Kappa at Indiana University who graduated in 1901. Her married name was Stella Patton (married to William Alexander Patton), and she became a high school teacher in Bluffton, Indiana.

Kappa Kappa Gamma Directory, 1913

This is a lovely Kappa Kappa Gamma Directory, published in 1913. This book is a complete listing of Kappa membership from 1870-1913. Information in some listings includes address, spouse, and year of death if deceased.

Songs of Kappa Kappa Gamma, 1921

It wouldn’t be a songbook without “Oh, Pat”…

Pledge Handbook, 1937

Pledge Handbook, 1950

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.