First Ohio Alpha Chapter House


In 1905, historic Ohio Alpha joined the long list of chapters able to describe “our new chapter house” in its report to The Scroll. The Miami Phis acquired a ten-room residence at the point where the campus and the town center of Oxford came together.

The house had been there a long time and was where a distinguished alumnus, Reverend David Swing, Miami 1852, had lived when he was on campus. Pastor Swing was one of Miami University’s distinguished alumni, nationally known as a religious leader and orator in the last half of the nineteenth century.

But that house was inadequate for the anticipated growth of campus fraternity life, and some farsighted alumni got involved in building a much larger house.

With the encouragement of Guy Potter Benton, a Phi serving as university president, the Phis acquired at a nominal figure a site on High Street where Benton envisioned the “Fraternity Place” would be. Several other fraternities got their land at the same terms, and the group of fraternity houses became a reality.

The Phis were first, and the cornerstone was laid on November 27, 1907, by Founder Lindley just twenty days before he passed away.

In 1908, the Phis had a public housewarming in the handsome new home, situated only about two blocks from the present house around the corner on Talawanda.