The history of the Delta Beta Chapter of Sigma Nu began in 1903 when our predecessor organization, the Pukwana Club,was founded as a response to the perceived elitism that permeated from Greek houses on campus at the time.
In 1906, our brothers decided that the Pukwana Organization ought to merge with an existing national Greek organization and on January 1st 1907, we received our official charter from Sigma Nu as the Delta Beta Chapter of Sigma Nu. We built bought our first chapter house in 1911 (known as the “Green Castle”) that was located near the modern-day Kemeny Building. In 1925, the brotherhood built a new home on a lot on Webster Avenue and we have resided in the same house ever since.
As a protest to our national organization’s discriminatory practices towards African American and Jewish brothers, our chapter left the national organization in 1960 and became known as “Sigma Nu Delta.” Twenty-three years later and after a revision of national’s policies, Sigma Nu Delta rejoined the national organization and became Sigma Nu–Delta Beta chapter again.
The Sigma Nu story began in the aftermath of the American Civil War. In October 1868, three cadets at the Virginia Military academy: James F. Hopkins, Greenfield Quarles and James F Riley gathered at a limestone outcropping over looking the parade grounds at VMI to discuss the prevalence of hazing that had been occurring at VMI at the time. The three men shared a mutual disgust of the hazing practices and so, they decided to found the first fraternity in American history that would specifically forbid the practice of hazing in any form. Out of this meeting, the Legion of Honor and our fraternity was born. On January 1st 1869, Hopkins, Quarles and Riley announced the founding of their new institution, Sigma Nu.
Today, Sigma Nu Fraternity has grown to over 200,000 members from approximately 250 chapters scattered across North America. In the Ivy League alone, we have brother fraternities at the University of Pennsylvania, Cornell, Yale and Columbia. Here at Dartmouth, Sigma Nu is the second largest national fraternity behind Sigma Alpha Epsilon.