Help the Kansas Chapter Celebrate 100 Years
A Look Back on DU’s Past at KU
As the Kansas Chapter prepares for its centennial this spring, it is a great time to reflect on how Delta Upsilon built us to be better men. We hope you’ll mark your calendar for April 18, 2020, and join us for our centennial celebration. While counting down the days until the Kansas Chapter turns 100, let’s look back on our decorated past.
Kanza Club Strikes Gold
KU professor Goldwin Goldsmith knew more than a thing or two about successfully building better men and better buildings. Through his DU experience at Columbia University and being the head of KU’s Department of Architecture, Goldwin helped the Kanza Club strike gold with getting a charter from DU in 1920. The Kansas Chapter was installed in April of that year when 30 members of Kanza became our founding members.
Marching Forward through the Great Depression
The Kansas Chapter capped a strong first decade at KU in 1929 when its members moved into a new Chapter House at 1025 West Hills Parkway (now known as Emery Road). Even during the tough times of the Great Depression that soon followed, the Kansas Chapter found a way to prosper. In 1933, we welcomed 41 men from Pi Upsilon with the consent of the DU national fraternity.
All Quiet on the Kansas Chapter Front
World War II brought uncertainty for DU with a majority of members joining the military. The government seized control of our home to house the men of the Navy College training program, which forced the 12 remaining members to rent a house at 1409 Tennessee for one year. In 1942, brothers began meeting at the home of Lloyd Houston once a week. The Chapter House was finally returned to the DU Alumni Corporation in 1945.
Doing Things the Right Way at DU
It didn’t take long after World War II for the Kansas Chapter to go back to its winning ways. The Chapter won several awards throughout the 1950s, including the Sweepstakes Award for the best DU chapter in the nation in 1954 and 1959. The Kansas Chapter’s commitment to building better men was on full display with organizing blood drives, assisting others in the community after catastrophic events, and helping underprivileged children. The good times rolled into the next two decades, as the Kansas Chapter won Sweepstakes Awards in 1964 and 1974.
Brothers Rally Together after Chapter House Fire
The bonds of the brothers from the late 1970s were strengthened following the Chapter House fire in January of 1978. There was extensive damage to the second and third floors but, most importantly, there were no injuries. Alumni, undergraduates, and parents rallied to raise funds to quickly remodel the chapter house and add on to the dining room.
Building a Better Kansas Alpha
While there was physical damage from the fire, the values of the Kansas Chapter remained stronger than ever in the 1980s. Our inaugural flag football tournament to benefit underprivileged children was played in 1983, and the Kansas Chapter won another Sweepstakes Award in 1987. The 1990s were dedicated to building an even better version of DU at KU. The Kansas Chapter of Delta Upsilon Educational Foundation was launched in 1990 and the Chapter House renovation and expansion was completed in 1995.
Where We are Today
As recently as 2011, the Kansas Chapter won yet another Sweepstakes Award. However, due to the actions of former brothers who didn’t live up to DU’s ideals of building better men, our undergraduates won’t be living in the chapter house for the next couple of years. The Kansas Chapter aims to recolonize in 2022, and there is no doubt it will be a leading fraternity at KU sooner rather than later. We hope to see you on April 18 at the Adams Alumni Center to celebrate 100 years of building better men at KU.