Prince Hall Freemasonry (PHA) is the first historically Black fraternal organization. The first Greek Letter fraternal organization was Alpha Kappa Nu at Indiana University in 1903. Wilberforce University is where Gamma Phi was established in 1905. Sixty miles away at Columbus, Ohio in March 1905, Pi Gamma Omicron was founded at Ohio State University (formation originally reported in the Chicago Defender in 1905). These organizations folded quickly without successfully establishing more than one college chapter each. Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, established at Cornell University in December 1906, is the first Black intercollegiate fraternity (the first to have more than one college chapter). It still exists today.

Alpha Phi Alpha's success inspired the founding of other Black Greek intercollegiate organizations. Today, these organizations (fraternities and sororities) are known collectively as the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC), and emphasize public service and civil rights. Some non-NPHC Black fraternal organizations, such as the Swing Phi Swing and Groove Phi Groove, do not solely use Greek letters in their names.

The first Black professional Greek fraternity, Sigma Pi Phi, was established in Pennsylvania in 1904.

Early formation (attempted or not existing today)

Name Year formation attempted Incorporated Collegiate Greek lettered
Alpha Kappa Nu 1903 No Yes Yes
Pi Gamma Omicron 1905 No Yes Yes
Gamma Phi [1] 1905 No Yes Yes
Gamma Tau[2]:34 1934 No Yes Yes


Name Founded Incorporated Collegiate Greek lettered NPHC
Prince Hall Freemasonry 1775 Yes No No No
Improved Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks of the World 1897 Yes No No No
Sigma Pi Phi 1904 Yes No Yes No
Alpha Phi Alpha 1906 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Kappa Alpha Psi 1911 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Omega Psi Phi 1911 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Phi Beta Sigma 1914 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Sigma Rhomeo 1936 Yes Yes Yes No
Wine Psi Phi[3] 1959 Yes Yes Yes No
Nu Gamma Alpha [4] 1962 Yes Yes Yes No
Iota Phi Theta 1963 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Malik Sigma Psi (also known as MALIK Fraternity) 1977 Yes Yes No No
Phi Delta Psi 1977 Yes Yes Yes No
Sigma Phi Rho 1979 Yes Yes Yes No
Delta Psi Chi Swordsmen 1985 Yes Yes Yes No
Megisté Areté (Christian) [5] 1989 Yes Yes No No
Phi Rho Eta 1994 Yes Yes Yes No


Name Founded Incorporated Collegiate Greek lettered NPHC
Alpha Kappa Alpha 1908 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Delta Sigma Theta 1913 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zeta Phi Beta 1920 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Sigma Gamma Rho 1922 Yes Yes Yes Yes
Iota Phi Lambda 1929 Yes Yes Yes No
Eta Phi Beta[6] 1942 Yes Yes Yes No
Gamma Phi Delta 1943 Yes Yes Yes No
Zeta Delta Phi [2]:100 1962 Yes Yes Yes No Omega Epsilon Rho Service Sorority[7] 2009 Yes Yes Yes No


Name Founded Incorporated Collegiate Greek lettered NPHC
Groove Phi Groove - males 1962 Yes Yes No No
Swing Phi Swing - females 1969 Yes Yes No No
Malika Kambe Umfazi - females [2]:107 1995 Yes Yes No No

See also