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The history of Phi Phi chapter stretches back nearly a century and a half. It’s a proud history that has seen Sigma Chi establish itself as one of the great fraternities at Pennsylvania. We recently came across a history of Phi Phi in our archives, and have included the following excerpt.

“Penn's Phi Phi chapter was established on Sept. 27, 1875 … (when) twelve Penn students formed Sigma Chi's Phi Phi chapter. They were drawn nearly equally from the College, Law School, and School of Medicine. They included William Burling Abbey (LL. B. 1876), Simon D. Addis (M.D. 1875), Cicero Brodhead (M.D. 1875), Frank Eyre (Class of 1875; M.D. 1875), Walter Lowrie Finley (Class of 1877), James Milo Giddings (M.D. 1875), Isaac Newton Gordon (Class of 1877), Dwight Morris Lowrie (LL.B. 1875), Henry Albert Potter (Class of 1877), Earl Milton Wilkins Seitz (Class of 1877), Amos R. Shalkop, and Joseph Warner Yardley (A.B. 1877). The founders of the Phi Phi Chapter did not recruit well, however, and when the Class of 1877 left campus, the chapter essentially disbanded.

For nearly twenty years, Sigma Chi was not represented among Penn's fraternities. Then, in May 1893, a Philadelphia alumni chapter was organized and in May 1896 fifteen students, assisted by five alumni members, re-organized the Phi Phi chapter. By 1905, the Phi Phi chapter was renting a house at 3311 Walnut Street, before re-locating at 3604 Walnut Street. In 1928, Sigma Chi took possession of the Anthony J. Drexel Jr. House at 3809 Locust Walk and has remained in that great brick mansion to the present time.

The 1940 edition of ‘The Record’ stated that Sigma Chi, Phi Delta Theta, and Beta Theta Pi formed "the famous Miami Triad," a reference to the Ohio University where each was born. Historians of American fraternities often compare the significance of the Miami Triad to the "Triad" of fraternities that formed at Union College in the mid-1820s. By 1940, Sigma Chi had ninety-seven active chapters and the national organization published two magazines. Penn's Phi Phi chapter published its own magazine, ‘The Quaker Sig’ at the close of each academic year.”