The history of Kappa Chapter is one of honor that has lasted over 130 years at North Georgia College. It is also the oldest organization on North Georgia campus besides the Corps of Cadets. Kappa Chapter, then called Chapter X, was granted its charter on March 11, 1881. At this time, Sigma Nu had reached a crisis and many now believe that the establishment of Kappa marked the second founding of Sigma Nu.
The new chapter had eight charter members:
Kappa 1: William O. Childress
Kappa 2: Grant Hamilton Frey
Kappa 3: Calvin Henderson
Kappa 4: John Alexander Howard
Kappa 5: William S. Myrick
Kappa 6: George Moultrie Napier
Kappa 7: Micollius Norman Stowe
Kappa 8: John Thomas Williams
The unusual chartering ceremony, where the eight men initiated themselves, took place in the attic of a building where the men read the Ritual and Constitution themselves.
The men had no chapter house or rented rooms and were forced to meet at the best available places at irregular intervals. Meetings were often held in rooms of the members, and at other times literary halls were used. Despite the problem with space for meetings, the membership had grown to twenty-two by the end of the first year.
The Birth of The Delta
John Alexander Howard was born on November 1857 in Dahlonega, Georgia. He attended North Georgia College where he graduated in 1878. After graduation, he remained in Dahlonega where he became editor of the Dahlonega Signal and publisher of the college paper. He was quite interested in student life and his association with the newspaper allowed him to remain in close contact with student affairs. Although he had been graduated for two years, he joined Kappa Chapter and showed a deep interest in the fraternity. He analyzed Sigma Nu and found two things that needed to be changed. First, Howard suggested that the fraternity change to a system of Greek letter designations for the individual chapters. His suggestion was accepted and with his system, Chapter I became Alpha, Chapter X became Kappa, and Chapter XI became Lambda.
The second problem that he saw was the fact that there was a lack of a fraternity magazine. He believed that a magazine was needed to bind the brotherhood together. He titled the magazine The Delta to symbolize the three existing chapters of Sigma Nu. It was first published in April 1883 and contained sixteen pages.The Delta is considered by many to be one of the most important and influential milestones aside from the founding itself. As a result of these contributions, John Alexander Howard achieved an immortal place in the Legion of Honor.
Kappa Becomes REX
The Chapter came to an end in 1933 when the school became a junior college, ending 52 years of existence. The spirit, however, would not die. The members of Sigma Nu went underground and upholding the principles of Love, Honor, and Truth, became known as REX. The members of REX kept the essence of Sigma Nu at North Georgia College by recruiting candidates and initiating brothers by the Ritual of Sigma Nu.
Kappa Chapter Today
Kappa Chapter today instills the same principles that its founders did over 130 years ago; Love, Honor, and Truth. Kappa’s members are involved in almost every organization on campus. With members in the Inter-Fraternity Council, Student Activities Board, Student Athletic Advisory Committee, Campus Outreach, Intro, athletes and the Corps of Cadets, Sigma Nu’s influence is felt campus wide.
Most importantly, Sigma Nu’s brotherhood, traditions, and principles, which have been passed down from the founders to the brothers of today, are cherished and applied to our everyday lives.