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Carlyle Literary Society records

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: MSP 141

Scope and Contents

The Carlyle Literary Society records (1881-1922; 1 cubic foot) documents the meetings and activities of the Carlyle Literary Society, active at Purdue from 1881-1923.  The collection includes records books that document the meetings of the society, its finances, and its constitution, as well as programs documenting society-sponsored events, and surveys administered to prospective new members.  At this time, there are no records documenting the change by the Carlyle Literary Society to Kappa Phi Sigma, a national literary society that they helped to found in 1923.  This collection might be useful to researchers interested in Purdue history, literary societies, nineteenth and early twentieth century material culture, and extracurricular activities of students.  Types of materials include: records books, event programs, and surveys. 


  • 1881 - 1922


Language of Materials

Collection material is in English.

Access information

Collection is open for research.

Copyright and Use Information

Copyright held by Purdue University

Historical Information

The Carlyle Literary Society was started in 1881.  Originally a part of the Irving Literary Society, the twenty-six founding members of the Carlyle left the Irving as a result of growing discontent within the society.  The Carlyle, like the other literary societies at Purdue, hosted annual events showcasing their skills.  The society was also involved in the publication of The Purdue, an early student-run newspaper, and eventually The Exponent. The Carlyle held weekly meetings in Society Hall, a space they shared with the Philalethian Literary Society (the first women’s society on campus).  The Carlyle Literary Society eventually joined four literary societies at other universities to found Kappa Phi Sigma, a national honorary literary fraternity in 1923.  After this time, the Carlyle Literary Society as a distinct entity ceased to function, instead acting under the auspices of Kappa Phi Sigma.  This may have been due in part to the apparent decrease in student interest in such societies around this time.  Kappa Phi Sigma was active until at least 1937, when it no longer appeared in the student handbook lists of activities and organizations.


1.042 Cubic Feet (One cubic foot box)


The Carlyle Literary Society records are arranged type into three series.
  1. Ephemera
  2. Records Books
  3. Surveys

Acquisition Information

Collection was transferred from Purdue University Libraries.

Processing Information

Whenever possible, original order of the materials has been retained.  All materials have been housed in polyester sleeves, acid-free folders, and acid-free boxes.  Metal fasteners have been removed whenever the integrity of the documents was not threatened by doing so.
Carlyle Literary Society records
Virginia Pleasant
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
First edition.

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 Mitch Daniels Boulevard
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States