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Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is home to our Chi Upsilon Chapter, founded 1902 at the University of Chicago. In nearby Evanston is Northwestern University and our Phi Chapter, revived in 1931. Our Delta Deuteron Chapter operated there from 1867 to 1869. Then, the original Phi Chapter moved from Baker University in Kansas and operated at Northwestern from 1870 to 1872.

Over the years many prominent brothers have resided in Chicago, including Benjamin F. Ray (Jefferson 1849) and Rev. William E. McLaren (Jefferson 1850), Archon President 1901-1903 and Episcopal Bishop of Chicago and Illinois. They helped formed the Kappa Graduate Chapter in 1893. Five conventions and Ekklesiai convened in the Windy City: 1896 and 1996, plus the record-setting gatherings of 1907, 1919 and 1946.

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World's Fair Clubhouse 1893

The Kappa Graduate Chapter organized in January 1893. Almost immediately they sought a site for brothers to gather during the World's Columbian Exposition. Held from May to October, 1893, this "world's fair" had a total attendance exceeding 25 million.

Brothers secured "a fine, three-story and basement, stone-front house on one of the finest streets in Englewood . . . . a little over a mile west from the Fair grounds." The home lodged up to twenty-five.

Undergraduates and graduates visited the Fair from as far away as California and New York. At least one Phi Gam banquet was held at the New York building. Every day at noon, Greeks gathered at the Indiana building to give fraternity cheers.

749 63rd Court [today probably E 63rd Street]

Auditourium Hotel,
from a postcard

The Auditorium Hotel

1896 Convention

This National Historic Landmark was completed in 1890 with 400 hotel rooms, offices, and an 4,200-seat auditorium. It was the site of our October 1896 convention. Seventy-five brothers registered.

Since 1947, the Auditorium Building has housed Roosevelt University.

430 South Michigan Avenue, northwest corner of Congress Parkway

Mandel Hall,
from a postcard

Mandel Hall, University of Chicago

1907 Ekklesia

The eight annual conventions held from 1898 to 1906 averaged around 150 registered attendees each. Chicago's 1907 Ekklesia set a record with 312 in attendance.

Mandel Hall was built in 1903 with other University buildings in the style of England's Oxford University. This music hall has hosted famous classical performers including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. It was renovated in 1980-81.

1131 East 57th Street

Congress Hotel,
from a postcard

Congress Hotel

1919 and 1946 Ekklesiai

The Congress Hotel hosted the 1919 and 1946 "Victory" Ekklesiai1919 broke records with 645 registered brothers, sixty more than New York 1917. In 1946 Chicago did it again with 877 registered. This was 222 more than the previous convention of 1940 in New York, and 183 over the previous record set in Pittsburgh, 1923.

The original tower was built in 1893 for the Columbian World's Exposition. It was designed to blend in with the Auditorium Hotel (above), to which it was connected until the building of Congress Parkway. The south tower (on the left in the picture) was added in 1902, with an addition in 1907.

It has passed through a series of owners - Pick, Americana, and Ramada - and today is independently owned as The Congress Plaza Hotel & Convention Center.

520 S. Michigan Avenue, southwest corner of Congress Parkway

Hyatt Regency Chicago,
from hotel web site

Hyatt Regency Chicago

1990 Ekklesia

Site of the 142nd Ekklesia, held August 10-14, 1990, with 793 registered - the most since 1954.

At the time, this was the city's largest hotel with over 2000 guest rooms.

151 East Wacker Drive, on Chicago's Riverwalk

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