Guide to the Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society, Duke University chapter records, 1930-1995
The Duke chapter of Sigma Xi, an honorary society recognizing scientific research, was formed in 1932. Types of materials included in this collection are: pamphlets, minutes, financial records, membership nominations, rosters, and correspondence. Major subjects include research in science and medicine, honor society membership, Duke University scholarship, and Sigma Xi. Materials range in date from 1930-1995.
- Record Group
- Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society, Duke University chapter records
- Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society. Duke University chapter.
- 6 Linear Feet, 6000 Items
- David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
- Material in English
Contains materials relating to the Duke University chapter of Sigma Xi's petition for establishment, membership nominations, minutes, programs, conference notes, lecture advertisements, correspondence, grant applications and awards materials, and printed material. Materials range in date from 1930-1995.
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In off-site storage; 48 hours advance notice is required for use.
Use & Permissions
Copyright for Official University records is held by Duke University; all other copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
How to Cite
[Identification of item], Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society. Duke University chapter Records, Duke University Archives, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.
Contains some correspondence and reports used to support the petition for a local chapter of Sigma Xi. Initiation rites include vows taken and the general order of initiation ceremonies. The membership roster has the most complete information about early activity in the chapter.
Contains membership nomination forms. New members are nominated and supported by established colleagues. These forms show the diversity in applicants and research areas of Sigma Xi members affiliated with Duke University. Ordered by date. Some are further ordered alphabetically.
Contains two bound volumes of administration notes, some typed meeting notes and annual reports. The meeting notes from 1933 also contain information about the chapter's establishment. Ordered by date.
Contains notes and fliers for lectures. Some lectures were part of annual initiation meetings. See also initiations for more lecture and speaker materials. Ordered by date.
Contains correspondence between members of the Duke University chapter, potential members, and the Sigma Xi national headquarters. Correspondence with the North Carolina Academy of Science is mostly regarding an annual donation and the relationship between the NCAS and the chapter. Ordered by date.
Contains letters of application and some correspondence regarding grants and prizes for travel, research, or general classroom support. Ordered by date.
Contains newsletters produced by the national headquarters, conference proceedings of national meetings, instructions on initiating a lecture program, a history of the Duke chapter, the results of a study of chapters' financial status, and clippings. Ordered by date.
Founded in 1886, Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society, is a non-profit membership society of nearly 75,000 scientists and engineers. Sigma Xi is headquartered in Research Triangle Park, N.C. and has more than 500 chapters at universities and colleges, government laboratories and industry research centers. In addition to publishing American Scientist, Sigma Xi awards grants annually to promising young researchers, holds forums on critical issues of science and society, and sponsors a variety of programs supporting honor in science and engineering, science education, science policy, and the public understanding of science.
The idea for a Duke University chapter of Sigma Xi was conceived during spring 1929, when a number of people interested in scientific research across departments began to meet on campus. They contacted Sigma Xi's national secretary regarding proper organization of a chapter and then held a general interest meeting was held in New Science Hall on Duke's East Campus in 1929. With fourteen members, the Sigma Xi Club of Duke University organized as a club and elected officers. As the petition for full membership to the national society continued, the members of the club were called on to present the history of the University and summaries of their own research. Their completed formal petition was accepted in June, 1932 and the charter granted in December 1932. Installation took place March 23, 1933. Some early members who petitioned for the charter were: Ruth Margery Addoms, Lucius Aurelius Bigelow, Bert Cunningham, Wilburt Cornell Davison, Joseph Banks Rhine, and Frederick Adolphus Wolf.
The Duke University chapter of Sigma Xi holds meetings about six times per year. Initiations are held annually and feature a keynote address from a professional in the sciences. Election to Sigma Xi is arranged through a campus department representative, with members coming from all departments in social, physical, and medical sciences. New members are elected to Sigma Xi as associates or full members, depending on their research contributions. New members must have demonstrated abilities in conducting research and a potential for leadership in their field.
The Duke University chapter offers grants to students and professionals in the community. Smaller grants have been awarded to science teachers in North Carolina, while Duke University students have received awards for travel, field work, and conferences.
- Lucius A. Bigelow papers. (University Archives. Duke University.)
- Meier (Otto) Records and Papers, 1931-1979. (University Archives. Duke University.)
- Gross (Paul M.) Papers, 1939-1979. (University Archives. Duke University.)
- Sanford (Terry) Records and Papers, 1945-1998. (University Archives. Duke University.)
- Marine Laboratory Records, 1945-1990. (University Archives. Duke University.)
- Brodie (H. Keith H.), President, Records, 1963-1994. (University Archives. Duke University.)
- Trinity College of Arts and Sciences, Office of the Dean records, 1934-2003. (University Archives. Duke University.)
- Sigma Xi Half Century Record and History, 1886-1936. 1936. (Perkins Library, Duke University)
- Sigma Xi quarterly. (Perkins Library, Duke University)
Click to find related materials at Duke University Libraries.
- Duke University -- Societies, etc.
- Duke University -- Students -- Societies, etc.
- Greek letter societies -- North Carolina -- Durham
- Sigma Xi
- Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society. Duke University chapter.
The Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society. Duke University chapter records were received by the University Archives as a transfer in 1974-1977, 1996.
Processed by Emily Glenn, January 2003
Encoded by Sherrie Bowser, January 2008
Accessions 74-61, 77-26, 77-69, 77-118 were merged into one collection, described in this finding aid.