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Page 98 text:
THE 1934 PERUVIAN
B. GREEN E. GREEN
0. KNAPP KUHL
D. MAYSTRICK E. MAYSTRICK MORT NOA
Philoma+hean Literary Society
Debates, largely impromptu, were a large item on the "literary" menu. Papers on any number of various subjects were written by the members and were read at the meetings—while some other member held the lamp to make the reading easier. An old melodeon was donated to the society and became its first musical instrument.
The first meeting room was so small that it became the object of humorous remarks. Under President Crabtree the society obtained a permanent room on the third floor of the old Normal Hall, which has been replaced by the new science building. The organization now meets bi-monthly in the high school auditorium of the T. J. Majors Training School.
The object of Philo has been to develop the particular talents of its members by giving them an opportunity to participate in the programs, and a history of Philo programs is a history of talented productions. The programs have always responded to the times, dealing with current happenings. Today, the usual entertainment at the meetings consists of music, speeches, and a social discussion. The typical Philomathean is neither a "grind" nor a "dig" nor a frivolous butterfly. but is one who cares for both intellectual and social interests.
Philo is proud to number in her ranks many men and women who have gained places of prominence in the field of education: and many of the successful lawyers and doctors of the state were at one time active Philomatheans. Among the outstanding Philo members might be mentioned the late Hon. T. J. Majors and Wilson E. Majors: C. Ray Gates: M. C. Lefler, superintendent of the Lincoln schools: J. W. Crabtree, one time president of the school and now of the National Educational Association: E. L. Rouse and V. E. Chatelain. There is also a number of the present faculty who are members.
Page 97 text:
Philomathean Literary Society
Philomathean has many times in her history made contributions to the school. The Philo rock, which adds such delightful atmosphere to the school, is an example. This rock was brought to the campus and dedicated in May, 1911, to mark the site of the first graduation exercises of the normal school in 1870. when two students received diplomas.
In 1928 J. D. Graves of Poru presented to the organization the quill pen which was used by the governor of Nebraska in signing the bill which transformed Peru from a private to a public school. This pen is now on display in the administration office.
Also in 1928 the society received the money for the Liberty Loan bonds which it had purchased during the war, and part of this money was put into a perpetual student loan fund, to which contributions have since been mode. Money was also given to make the final payment on the electric bell system which is now in use.
Many of the original purposes of Philo are being filled by the newer organizations—dramatic, musical and forensic. It is believed, however, that a literary society still has a place and a program to present. The social functions have expanded during recent years as others of the activities have declined, thus filling a neod for more social life. This year a dance was held jointly with the Everett Literary Society.
The Philo convocation program this year was notable. It was a review of the different activities of the group, as represented by the various talents of the members.
The success of the society throughout the year has been due in a great part to the untiring efforts of the adviser, Miss Grace M. Petersen, who has given advice without making it mandatory that the society accept as final her opinion.
Page 99 text:
THE 19 3 4 PERUVIAN
Organizations of Peru
A large chapter in the history of Peru Teachers College would necessarily be devoted to its organizations, for they are. and have been from the very beginning, an integral part of the life of the collece. The destinies of the students have been determined just as surely, if not in as great a degree, by the training they have received in these organizations as by their more strictly academic work. The shifting fortunes of these groups of people with like interests have woven many bright spots into the fabric of the school's history.
Literary societies played the largest part in the early history of the school. Philomathean being organized soon after the opening of the school, and Everett in 1872. These organizations have continued active down to the present. At times, however, other literary societies have been in existence also. For example, two were organized in 1893—the Wellingtonian and the State Normal Junior.
The Christian organizations appeared on the scene quite early. The establishment of a branch of the Young Wen's Christian Association in 1886 was followed a year later by the founding of a Young Women's Christian Association. In 1906 the College Catholic Association, then the Normal Catholic Association, was brought into being by a group of Catholic students, directed by faculty members. At one time, also, an Episcopal Guild was numbered among campus societies.
In the middle period of the school's history debating societies were prominent, and a zeal was displayed for the forensic art which is hardly understandable today. In the late nineties two societies were formed. These met rcgu'arly for discussions. The one for the young women was called the Athenian, that for the young men the Ciceronian. The Webster debating society was organized shortly after the War. as the result of a revival of interest in debating.
The Dramatic Club, organized in 1908. has proved its worth and is now one of the most prominent organizations on the campus, a tremendous amount of work being done by members superabounding in enthusiasm. A movement is now afoot for the securing of a branch of a national dramatics organization to further promote the work in drama.
Musical organizations of some kind have always existed, but because of the nature of the wprk, they have always varied greatly. An interest has recently been stimulated in obtaining for the music students a more permanent and professional organization.
Athletic organizations are much like musical groups in that the "clubs" formed are usually rather ephemeral. A unified Athletic Association was established, however, with the awakened interest in athletics after the beginning of the century. The present organizations, the W. A. A., dating from 1924, and the "P" club, Phi Lambda Alpha, dating from 1920, are well established and may be called permanent because of their inclusive interests.
The Girls' Club came into existence in 1919 and the Men's Club was called into being soon after. They are now the means of carrying forward a variety of interests in connection with the general student life.
The advent of the organizations which are more strictly departmental and which have national affiliations is relatively recent. Some of them, though, had previously existed os local organizations, under a different name. Sigma Tau Delta, the English fraternity, became the first national group on the campus, in 1926, due largely to the efforts of Professor Beck. The latest addition was Lambda Delta Lambda. Physical Science fraternity, which received its charter last summer. Because of high national qualifications and the small number of people eligible for membership the activities of some of the departmental honor societies have been suspended.
Alpha Erudito is an organization not readily classified. It came into existence in 1929 and is open only to those students who upon graduation from high school have received Normal Board Scholarships. The Freshman Clubs were conceived a few years ago for the purpose of providing a mutually interesting and profitable activity in a congenial grouo for each freshmen. Some of these activities prepare the way for membership in other organizations.
Purely social groups have never found a lasting place in the activities of the students, though most of the clubs and societies perform social functions in addition to their othor activities.
Many are the groups which were once in existence, but now have nearly been forgotten. Some of them served a need which was merely temporary, thon passed on; others died of sheer inertia. Such groups as the Deutscher Verein. Agricultural Society, Symphony Club. Mandolin Club. Camera Club, the Scientific Society, and the Health and Efficiency Club served their purpose then faded from the campus picture. No organization can in Peru live a charmed life; it must fill a need and prove its worth.
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