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Beta Phi

Whitman College

Jan 10th, 1948

Founding Date

Eleven happy collegiates and nine thrilled alumnae became charter members of Beta Phi of Alpha Phi in impressive ceremonies at Whitman College on January 10 and 11, 1948. 


The Delta Gamma chapter at Whitman College kindly offered their lovely chapter room for use during the initiation. Following initiation a beautiful banquet was held in the Georgian Room of the Marcus Whitman Hotel. Wide strips of silver paper, centered by bordeaux satin ribbon ran the length of the tables. The flower centerpieces carried out the fraternity colors, which were further emphasized by silvery spray and tiny wired bows of bordeaux net. Bordeaux candles in silver holders completed the beauty of the tables. Corsages for the initiates and honored guests featured tiny dark red orchids backed with silver leaves and silver ribbon. 


Kay Gates was the song leader and the thirty-nine Alpha Phis present sang together “To the Silver and Bordeaux” and other well loved songs. 


Helen Carson Plumb (Tau-Oregon), was the toastmistress for the banquet. The theme of the toasts was “The Symbols of Alpha Phi.” Kay Gates spoke of “The Flowers of Alpha Phi” as being symbolic of the impression that must be made on the collegiate world by the new chapter. Alice Sorenson, president of the new chapter, spoke on “The Golden Shining Pin” as the goal of every new member. Adele Wedemeyer Anderson (Tau-Oregon), spoke of “Ivy” as representing alumnae help and loyalty, evergreen and enduring. Barbara Blythe King (Tau-Oregon), speaking for the Executive Board in the absence of Ruby James Brennan (Chi-Montana), spoke on “Ursa Major, our Constellation.” She spoke of the constellation and its relation to the Pole Star as the center of our Alpha Phi universe and reminded us all of the trust and sense of integrity that must be the keynote of our relations with each other. Alice Soreson then read the scores of messages of congratulations and good wishes from the Executive Board, the collegiate and alumnae chapters and many other fraternity friends. Alice also accepted, on behalf of the chapter, the charter fee, which was a gift from the Seattle Alumnae Chapter, and many other beautiful and useful gifts. Then came the solemn and beautiful loving cup service, followed by “Alpha Phi Toujours.”


Early Sunday afternoon Margery Robinson Phillips (Sigma-Washington), vice-president and director of extension and recruitment, conducted a model chapter meeting for the new initiates. After the model meeting all hurried to adorn for the installation ceremonies and the public reception. The 1947 fall new members, fifteen in number, appeared at the installation festivities for the first time and were formally presented to those present. Margery Robinson Phillips conducted the installation ceremonies and then presented the charter which was signed by the charter members, collegiate and alumnae.


The reception was also in the Georgian Room of the Marcus Whitman Hotel. The ices for the reception were in the form of dark red roses. The cakes were petit fours with Alpha Phi in bordeaux icing, set off by tiny silver balls. The fraternity colors were further carried out by the dark red and white mints.