Brave hearts filled with a noble purpose whose eyes saw clearly into the future...
At a time when society looked upon women only as daughters, wives, and mothers—and therefore not in need of higher education—our ten Founders were pioneers of the coeducational system. Attending school with the handicap of implied, if not open, opposition, our Founders sought support from each other. There was a need for a social center, a place of conference, a tie which should unite, a circle of friends who could sympathize with one another in their perplexities. They formed Alpha Phi in 1872 at Syracuse University. Today, Alpha Phi continues to provide a "tie which unites, a circle of friends" for women young and old all around the world. From hand to hand and heart to heart, we are all grateful and proud of the legacy left to us by our Founders.
...lived the longest, most active life of all of the Founders. She was born in East Bloomfield, New York. A member of Phi Beta Kappa, she graduated in the class of 1876. She was a writer, lecturer, business woman, philanthropist, a trustee of Syracuse University, and held many volunteer positions that filled her nearly ninety-nine years. Nationally recognized for her achievements, Clara was listed in Who's Who of America.
...was born in Utica, New York. She received her B.S. degree in 1875 at age 21, and her M.S. degree in 1879. Upon graduation she became an elocutionist and teacher of higher mathematics in the high school in Bedford, Pennsylvania. She also taught in Minnesota, Clifton Springs, New York, and in Teacher's Institutes in Pennsylvania and Iowa.
She gave numerous readings in fourteen states and territories. A Syracuse newspaper wrote: "It is a matter of gratification that a Syracuse lady and graduate of the University has achieved such flattering success in this difficult department of literary work."
Her father's office served as the first chapter room. The rent was $7.50 a term. Florence was the first Founder to enter the Silent Chapter.
...was born in Phoenix, New York. She received her B.S. in 1876 and in 1879 she received an M.S. degree in modern languages. After college, she taught school and wrote for newspapers and magazines.
...was born in Rome, New York. She received her B.A. degree in 1876 and her M.A. degree in 1879. After college she taught for a short time in Syracuse, then from 1882 to 1892 she taught at the High School in Rome, New York. She then traveled in Europe for a year. Thereafter, for forty years she taught Latin at the Rome Free Academy.
...was born in Ovid, New York. She received her B.S. degree in 1875 in the scientific course at age 20, her M.S. in 1878, and a music degree in 1879.
...was born in Rochester, New York. She was a brilliant student who graduated with marked honor from the Rochester Free Academy at age thirteen. At sixteen she taught in the Rochester Collegiate Institute, then took a brief preparatory course in the Genesee Wesleyan Conference Seminary, entering Syracuse University in the fall of 1872. She graduated with honors from the four year classical course, displaying unusual ability in Latin, mathematics, and political science.
She was an excellent debater, and one of the first exercises of the chapter was a debate, which she and Mattie Foote won on the topic: "Resolved: That Women Have Their Rights."
...was the first president of Alpha Phi, and the Michaelanean Society derives its name from hers. The Michaelanean Society still exists as a corporation and owns the Alpha Phi Syracuse chapter house. She was in the class of 1874, engaged in the study of the classics and literary work, which she continued to study from 1874 to 1877. She received her M.S. degree in 1879 and her Ph.D. in history in 1880.
...was an inseparable friend of Jane Higham. Born in Rome, New York, she attended Rome Free Academy with Jane, and together they entered Syracuse University. Louise and Jane remained the closest friends till Louise's death, and Louise's children called her "Aunt Janie." She was in the class of 1876 and received a master's degree two years later.
...was born in Weedsport, New York. She was the only Founder not to graduate from the University, leaving in 1874. Her course had been Latin-scientific. She had taught school for a time. Clara was the only farmer's daughter among the Original Ten. The first Alpha Phi meeting was held in her room.