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Phi Psi (Swarthmore College) Records

Identifier: SFHL-RG6-Q009

Scope and Contents

Contains the records of Phi Kappa Psi, Phi Omicron Psi, and Phi Psi beginning in 1889. The collection includes an early history of the chapter; legal papers relating to the alumni corporation and the chapter; administrative records including minutes, annual reports, finances, news clippings, and correspondence relating to the chapter; the Alumni Executive Committee President's file; the chapter's journal (The Courthouse Bell); scrapbooks; and publications of the national fraternity.

Organized into six series:

  1. History and legal papers of the corporation
  2. Administrative records
  3. Alumni Executive Committee President's file
  4. The Courthouse Bell
  5. Scrapbooks and Miscellaneous
  6. Phi Kappa Psi publications


  • Creation: 1889-1986


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright has not been assigned to Friends Historical Library. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in to the Director. Permission for publication is given on behalf Friends Historical Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by reader.

Biographical / Historical

Now a local fraternity at Swarthmore College, Phi Psi was established as Pennsylvania Kappa in 1889, a chapter of the Phi Kappa Psi national fraternity. It was a chapter of Phi Kappa Psi until 1963. Starting in 1948, members of Pennsylvania Kappa became concerned about the racially discriminating policies of some of the chapters which were part of the national fraternity. After failing to amend the fraternity's constitution at national meetings in 1960 and 1962, Pennsylvania Kappa surrendered its charter in 1963, becoming the third Swarthmore fraternity to become local. It operated for a time as Phi Omicron Psi before becoming Phi Psi.


8 linear ft. (15 boxes)

Language of Materials



Contains the records of Phi Kappa Psi, Phi Omicron Psi, and Phi Psi from 1889 to 1967, with gaps in some series. Now a local fraternity at Swarthmore College, Phi Psi began as Pennsylvania Kappa, a chapter of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. Pennsylvania Kappa was established in 1889 and was a chapter of Phi Kappa Psi until 1963.

Physical Location

For current information on the location of materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donor: Phi Psi

Donor: Round-robin correspondence, Class of 1934, gift of Samuel Dean Caldwell, III. Acc. SCA 2000-006

Related Materials

Photographs in SPA 201/Student Activities/Fraternities

Processing Information

Sorted, described, and rehoused in 2004.

Finding aid for Phi Psi (Swarthmore College) Records, 1889-1986
Finding Aid Prepared by FHL staff
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Find It at the Library

Most of the materials in this catalog are not digitized and can only be accessed in person. Please see our website for more information about visiting or requesting repoductions from Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College Library

500 College Avenue
Swarthmore Pennsylvania 19081 USA