University of Chicago Library

Guide to the University of Chicago, Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity Records 1955-1961

© 2010 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary


University of Chicago. Phi Alpha Delta. Law Fraternity. Records




0.5 linear feet (1 box)


Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


The Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity. Records comprise pamphlets, manuals, records, typescripts, correspondence, awards, and record cards from the eight years spanning 1953 and 1961.

Information on Use


The collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: University of Chicago. Phi Alpha Delta. Law Fraternity. Records, [Box #, Folder #], Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Historical Note

The Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity was founded in 1902 by Chicago law students from Chicago-Kent, the College of Illinois, and Northwestern. Within a month, the University of Chicago was initiated and began a chapter, closely followed by the Universities of Wisconsin and Michigan. Adhering to a policy of steady, conservative expansion, Phi Alpha Delta had, by 1957, seventy-eight active chapters and forty alumni chapters. Today, it has over 300,000 active members from reputable law schools in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Puerto Rico.

Phi Alpha Delta defined its purpose as forming strong bonds between the members from different law schools and between law alumni and their schools in order to create a large network for the exchange of business information and other matters of common interest. Requisites for admission were limited, in the early years, to men in good academic standing at a law school that had a chapter and graduates or law instructors at schools accredited by the American Bar Association or the Association of American Law Schools. Individual memberships were attained upon invitation only.

Scope Note

The records in this collection represent the effort made by law students at the University of Chicago to reactivate its chapter’s participation in Phi Alpha Delta activities following a period of inactivity that began in 1943. The records contain documents that set forth the fraternity’s rules, ritual, pledging process, activities, meetings, and external alliances. They chronicle the mechanics of building professional affiliations and camaraderie.

The twelve folders that contain the records follow an order that maps the process of inducting new members, cultivating them, building lasting colleagues and increasing their number through affiliations with other Phi Alpha Delta members attending national conventions and through alumni events.

Related Resources

The following related resources are located in the Department of Special Collections:


Subject Headings


Box 1   Folder 1

Phi Alpha Delta Rule Books, 1953-1957

Box 1   Folder 2

Phi Alpha Delta Applications, 1960-1961

Box 1   Folder 3

Initiation Remittance Sheets, 1957-1960

Box 1   Folder 4

Chapter Clerk Manual, 1960

Box 1   Folder 5

Pledge Questionnaires, 1955-1957

Box 1   Folder 6

Minutes and Correspondence, 1956-1958

Box 1   Folder 7

Phi Alpha Delta Song and Memorabilia, 1956-1957

Box 1   Folder 8

Publications, 1956-1958

Box 1   Folder 9

Chapter Workshop Materials for the 1958 Convention

Box 1   Folder 10

Phi Alpha Delta Awards, 1956-57

Box 1   Folder 11

Alumnus Record Cards, undated

Box 1   Folder 12

Information Sheets and Minutes, 1957