The Epsilon Kappa chapter of the Sigma Nu Fraternity at the University of North Dakota began as the Synergoi Fraternity. After years of working towards nationalization, the Epsilon Kappa chapter of Sigma Nu fraternity was installed June 13, 1923.
Many of the early practices of the chapter such as “stool night,” philanthropic efforts, and the observance of Armistice Day became traditions. Stool night was an occasion when the faults of an individual pledge or member were discussed and improvement was encouraged. Philanthropic efforts included fund-raising for and helping at the Rehabilitation Center, donations to various charities, and holiday dinners for poor children in the community. The tradition of Armistice/Memorial Day included church attendance as a body as each member wore a white rose in honor of Sigma Nu men who had died for their country. This practice began November 6, 1923 and eventually changed from Armistice Day Sunday to Memorial Day Sunday.
Social events have always played a large part in the lifestyle of the chapter. For example, “White Rose” was a spring party during which the elected Sweetheart of the fraternity was presented with a gift. The chapter has participated in many intramural sports including football, softball, volleyball, and basketball. They expressed a preference for kittenball in the 1920s and the 1930s. Sigma Nu has been active in student elections. Its members have occupied the offices of student senator, student representative, student body vice-president, and student body president.
The rules of the fraternity showed many changes over the years. For example, in 1918 drinking, card playing in the house, and smoking in the house were all prohibited. These rules were all eventually repealed or modified. Some rules grew out of specific problems. For example, rules were established in 1976 to enforce penalties for the possession and sale of illegal drugs.
Sigma Nu's place of residence changed with time. In February of 1927, the members of Sigma Nu moved from 2912 University Avenue to a house designed by Joseph Bell DeRemer at 2808 University Avenue. They were forced to vacate their house when the Army took residence there in March of 1943. After the war, they returned to their house by February 11, 1946. They were threatened with foreclosure on the mortgage in 1976, but they did make their payments and keep the house.
Donation; 91-1731, 91-1746, and 91-1754
Series 1: Minutes of Meetings
Series 2: Membership Information
Series 3: Financial
Series 4: Photographs
Series 5: Events
Series 6: Blueprints
Series 7: National Publications