Nu Sigma Nu, Alpha Chapter. (University of Michigan) records: 1882-1999
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All Series Level Scope and Content Notes

The Nu Sigma Nu, Alpha Chapter collection contains records that relate to both the local chapter of Nu Sigma Nu as well as the founding of the national organization. Information within these records reveals the history of the fraternity, the daily business of the Alpha Chapter throughout its existence, and the interaction between the Alpha Chapter and the University of Michigan. These records are divided into eight series: Administration, Correspondence, Financial Records, History, Housing, Nu Sigma Nu Medical Scholarship Fund, Photographs, and Publications.

The Administration series contains five subseries, as well as other topical files pertaining to the day-to-day business of the fraternity. These subseries are: Constitutions and Manuals, Events, Fraternities, House Business, and Legal. Within them are records pertaining to specific events and actions in the life of the Alpha Chapter of Nu Sigma Nu as well as general announcements made to members the national fraternity. Specifically, the subseries Events, House Business, and Legal contain records that pertain only to the Alpha Chapter of Nu Sigma Nu at the University of Michigan. The subseries Constitutions and Manuals contains publications or letters that pertain to all chapters of the national fraternity.

The Correspondence series contains six subseries: Alumni Correspondence, Building Correspondence, Executive Council Correspondence, Fraternity Business, Officer Correspondence, and University of Michigan Housing Division Correspondence. Records within these subseries that are enclosed in titled folders are arranged alphabetically by subject; all other documents are arranged chronologically. The Alumni Correspondence subseries contains letters sent either to or from Alpha Chapter alumni during the time periods listed. The subject matter of these letters is usually personal and not related to the subjects of the other subseries. The Building Correspondence subseries contains records that relate to two separate periods of construction in the history of the Alpha Chapter: the construction of its first chapter house, in 1906, and the restoration of that house in the 1960s. The Executive Council Correspondence subseries contains two folders that overlap chronologically. The Fraternity Business subseries contains correspondence that pertains to both the Alpha Chapter (also known as the Nu Sigma Nu Corporation) and the national organization of Nu Sigma Nu.

The Officer Correspondence subseries contains the correspondence of several key people within the Nu Sigma Nu fraternity, either nationally or locally. The files are arranged alphabetically by the last name of the officer (or by one of the officers, if it contains more than one person). The subject matter of these correspondence is far-reaching and varied, ranging from the construction of the first chapter house to collecting house dues to managing the affairs of the national organization. Some of the officers' correspondence is still housed within their original filing system. Of particular interest is the correspondence of Frederick G. Novy, who served as Secretary for the Corporation of the Alpha Chapter of Nu Sigma Nu for several years. One set of correspondence was taken directly from Dr. Novy's own filing system and dates from 1902 to 1913. Additional correspondence of Dr. Novy is organized chronologically from 1911 to 1923. The subseries University of Michigan Housing Division Correspondence contains one folder of general correspondence and one folder pertaining to a 1986 incident that called into question the legal status of the Nu Sigma Nu Corporation and the ownership of the Alpha Chapter house.

The Financial Records series includes two main files: Account Books and Monthly Balance Sheets. Within the Account Books file are various record books belonging to the Nu Sigma Nu Corporation or house officers. Of particular note is the Record Book for Alpha Chapter of Nu Sigma Nu, dating back to 1895, in which some of the earliest members of Nu Sigma Nu pledged money to build the first chapter house. Also within that book are records of house dues over several decades, expense listings, meeting announcements, and letters from then-active members. The file Monthly Balance Sheets contains two folders of detailed financial records for the Alpha Chapter house, ranging from 1949 to 1996.

The History series contains one record book, created around 1905, in which Nu Sigma Nu Alpha Chapter members of early years would eventually write their autobiographies. Although it is only partially completed, the book contains pages of autobiographical information about Nu Sigma Nu men and their careers in medicine. A separate folder within that file contains non-dated historical information about the founding and development of the fraternity in general, presumably written for publication in annual bulletins or alumni newsletters. In addition to written documents, there exist two artifacts within the History series: the original charter from 1882 and the crest of Nu Sigma Nu.

The Housing series contains two subseries: 1906 House (1015 E. Huron) and 1969 House (1912 Geddes). There have been two permanent chapter houses of the Alpha Chapter of Nu Sigma Nu: the house built at 1015 East Huron Avenue in 1906 and the house built at 1912 Geddes Avenue in 1969. Within the subseries 1906 House (1015 E. Huron) there exist legal documents, insurance policies taken out for the house, and a record of house inspections done by the Housing Division of the University of Michigan. Information pertaining to the construction of the 1906 house can be found in the Correspondence series, in the subseries Building Correspondence. The subseries 1969 House (1912 Geddes) contains similar records, as well as information on the campaign to build the second chapter house, how the house was furnished, and individual incidents that occurred while the house was in use. Financial documents relating to the houses can be found in the series Financial Records.

The Nu Sigma Nu Medical Scholarship Fund series contains three principle files: Applicants, Committee, and Funding. The Applicants file contains separate chronological folders with information on each year's applicants. The file Committee contains background information (including a list of the recipients of the scholarship through the year 1997), member correspondence, and minutes from their meetings. The file Funding contains correspondence regarding the creation of the scholarship endowment fund as well as photocopies of the front pieces of three plaques that recognized the efforts of key contributors to the fund.

The Photographs series contains five subseries. The subseries Class Composites contains photographs of the senior classes of the Alpha Chapter from the years 1883 to 1993, as well as additional group photographs. Many of the pictures are in oversized storage due to their large size. When not indicated otherwise, the photograph is available in the box listed on the finding aid. The subseries Individual Portraits contains photographs or drawings of Nu Sigma Nu alumni, usually taken during the height of their career. There are two unidentified men in this collection; they are housed together in one folder. The subseries Reunion and Convention Photographs contains formal and candid photographs taken at a convention in 1966 and the All-Year Reunion in 1990. The subseries Social Events contains candid pictures taken at different parties hosted by the Alpha Chapter of Nu Sigma Nu ca. 1990. These snapshots are housed in one folder and three photo albums, which were created by the members of the Alpha Chapter for their own use. In the subseries House Photographs there are pictures of the 1906 House at 1015 E. Huron.

The Publications series contains formal publications of fraternity business, including yearly bulletins, event bulletins, and reports from national conventions. In addition to these occasional publications, there are four subseries: Directories, History, Nu Sigma Nu Bulletins (Softcover), and Nu Sigma Nu Bulletins (Hardcover). The subseries Directories contains geographic listings of all national Nu Sigma Nu members up to the date of publication. The History subseries contains a two-volume set that details the first fifty years of the fraternity's history. It includes an all-encompassing alumni list, organized by chapter, notes and letters addressed to the fraternity from influential Nu Sigma Nu alumni, and histories of the individual chapters as well as the national organization as a whole. It is the most comprehensive guide to the creation and development of Nu Sigma Nu. The Nu Sigma Nu Bulletins (Softcover) subseries and the Nu Sigma Nu Bulletins (Hardcover) subseries contain annual publications that detail the life of the Nu Sigma Nu fraternity of that current year. The hardcover bulletins are more formal, detailed publications, published no more than once a year and containing articles and records submitted by every active chapter of the fraternity. The softcover bulletins are smaller and less detailed. There exist several different series of publications in softcover form and some years passed without the annual publication, creating a break in the chronology.