Chi Omega Chapter House - University of Arkansas - Fayetteville AR
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Where's George
N 36° 04.235 W 094° 10.416
15S E 394318 N 3992414
Quick Description: This plaque, with its lengthy text describing the history of the Chi Omega sorority and this house, is mounted to the front of the house. 940 W Maple Street
Location: Arkansas, United States
Date Posted: 3/28/2014 4:59:17 PM
Waymark Code: WMKE22
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member arkansas stickerdude
Views: 1

Long Description:
The Chi Omega was the first Greek organization to build its own chapter house on the University of Arkansas campus. Chi Omega (Psi chapter) purchased this lot in the Oakland Place Addition in 1928. Construction began that same year and the new home was occupied in late 1928.

Psi Chapter is the mother chapter of the Chi Omega national organization. It was founded in Fayetteville on April 5, 1895, by Jobelle Holcombe, Ina Mae Boles, Jean Vincenheller, Alice Simonds, and Dr. Charles Richardson. All were University of Arkansas students except Dr. Richardson, who was a Fayetteville dentist interested in student life. He had assisted the four students to such an extent in getting the new sorority started that he was made an honorary member. More than 100 years after its founding, Chi Omega is the largest women’s Greek organization in America, with 175 chapters in 42 states.

The Chi Omega House is a three-story building, plus basement, with Colonial Revival and Classical Revival influences. The original building was made to accommodate 45 young women, a house mother, a guest room, and a house manager–in addition to a chapter room, living room, dining room, kitchen, reception room, and laundry.

Plans for the original part of the house were prepared by Charles L. Ellis, the former superintendent of buildings and grounds at the University. Construction was by the Wages Brothers, contractors from Fayetteville, working in conjunction with James Dinwiddie, the city’s building inspector and architect.

When construction began in 1928, Miss Jobelle Holcombe, a charter member of Chi Omega, and at that time an associate professor of English at the University, turned over the first shovel of dirt. Total investment in the house was $35,000. These funds came from fees assessed for a "house fund," benefit parties, friends, and bank loans. The gift that started the house fund was a $2,000 bequest from Dr. Richardson.

Growth of both the University and the Psi Chapter made it necessary to enlarge and remodel the house several times. In 1941 an addition was built on the west side. Architects were Edwin C. Price of Fayetteville, and Haralson and Nelson of Fort Smith. The contractor was the E.F. Bird Construction Co. of Fayetteville. In 1958 came additions to the northern, or rear, elevation of the house. The architect was Paul Young, Jr., of Fayetteville, and the contractor was the W.H. Patterson Construction Co. These two additions enabled the building to house a total of 75 young women and a house mother. In 1987 and 1988 the plumbing, wiring, and heating systems were improved.

In April 1995, 100 years after the founding of Chi Omega at the University of Arkansas, the chapter house was accepted for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.
Link to Marker: [Web Link]

History of Marker: Not listed

Additional Parking: Not Listed

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