FaceBook IconTwitter LogoYouTube LogoLinkedin IconInstagram IconFlickr Icon

History from The Delta

Conversation

25 Years Ago (Volume 108, Number 3)

The Fall issue of The Delta from 1991 was focused on the prominent role that Sigma Nus played in the stewardship of America’s natural resources and the conservation efforts of several brothers. The cover story for this issue highlighted Ned Barclay Ball (North Carolina State), in whose memory the wildlife park at Kanuga Conferences, Inc. in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina was dedicated. The Letter from the Editor writes, “The park is a testimony to Brother Ball’s love for nature and his commitment to preserving the Earth’s environment, a matter of concern for all responsible people.”

The timing of this look back into the past is appropriate as 2016 marks the 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service. This issue also highlights the achievements of Ben C. Dysart III (Vanderbilt) as former president of the National Wildlife Federation and Lee Thomas (Sewanee) as former head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The closing wisdom of this issue is one that holds great truth even today: “The Ned Ball Wildlife Park symbolizes the call of Sigma Nus everywhere to appreciate the natural world around us, to be ‘givers,’ not ‘takers.’”

50 Years Ago (Volume 83, Number 2)

While there was no Fall issue of The Delta in 1966 the Winter issue was full of news with the upcoming celebration of Sigma Nu’s Centennial and the 42nd Grand Chapter in Kansas City, Mo. The Pony Express Rider was selected as the official symbol for the 42nd Grand Chapter with the reminder that, “It represents Sigma Nu as it moves towards it Centennial, pausing there only momentarily for a change of horses, and then a fresh start into the next hundred.”

This issue also featured a piece on Wyatt Thomas Johnson Jr., a former Commander of Mu Chapter (Georgia) and an Alpha Affiliate, as he became one of 15 White House Fellows serving a one-year term as an aide to top Washington government officials. Johnson was at that time a graduate of the University of Georgia as well as an MBA graduate from Harvard Business School. Johnson was encouraged to apply Harvard classmate and fellow alumnus William W. Wyman (Colgate). He submitted his application close to the deadline via Air Mail Special Delivery but quickly remembered an error. “I’ll never forget that, since the first application contained a typographical error. I drove into Boston to retrieve the bundle and correct the error before it was placed on the plane for Washington,” Johnson said. Johnson was assigned to Special Assistant to the President Bill Moyers, specifically working with The White House Press Office. Of special note was that Johnson actually met then President Lyndon Johnson on his very first day on the job. “My first impression was and has continued to be that this is the busiest place in the world. I was struck that first day by the enormous amount of work which each person accomplishes each day. The phone is constantly ringing. Everywhere people are scurrying around with messages.”

100 Years Ago (Volume 34, Number 1)

The October 1916 issue is a lengthy one coming in at over 141 pages! Then Editor of The Delta and Hall of Honor inductee John C. Scott (Purdue) seems to acknowledge this fact while highlighting the theme of this issue, “The theme of this issue is expressed in an inspiring manner on the open page. It is the application of the spirit of the day – a timely summons at the opening of a new college year calling all our men to their colors...The effort represents thought and study by talented minds covering a period of months, and a long summer of collecting and compiling records and notes, of reviewing and preparation. If it is not carefully read it will not be properly assimilated, nor will it be reasonably appreciated. Then indeed it would seem like love’s labor lost.”

Vice Regent Borden H. Burr (Alabama/Washington and Lee) also offers words of wisdom that many can relate to today. “There is some misconception as to the purposes and results, of fraternities. Some regard them as breeding places for snobbishness, as formers of a false aristocracy and as organizations which prefer society to scholarship, override brains with brawn, and compel merit to yield to name. The failure to enforce proper regulations, inattention to business details, disregard of fraternity ideals, the lack of preparedness on the part of some chapters, has given credence to these views, and the natural result has been the call, on the part of many, for anti-fraternity legislation. We must prove that these chapters are the exception. Our chapters must become assets, not liabilities. There must be as the foundation stone, individual preparedness.”

© 2015-2017 Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc.
9 North Lewis Street, P.O. Box 1869, Lexington, Virginia 24450
Phone: 540.463.1869 | Fax: 540.463.1669 | Email: headquarters@sigmanu.org

FaceBook IconTwitter LogoYouTube LogoLinkedin IconInstagram IconFlickr Icon