Alpha Epsilon Delta
The First Eighty Years 1926-2006
Rev. Joseph L. Walter, CSC, Honorary National President
Donald Schreiweis, Ph.D., National Treasurer
Dr. M. L. Moore was affiliated with Alpha Epsilon Delta almost from its founding and so was well-qualified to give the history of AED, “The First Sixty Years,” which he published in The Scalpel, Spring 1986.This is a most comprehensive history of the first sixty years of AED. The reader should refer to that issue for a detailed history of AED from 1926 to 1986. The Rev. Joseph L. Walter, CSC, Honorary National President prepared a history of AED to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of AED. In, Alpha Epsilon Delta, The First Seventy-five Years – 1926-2000, Fr. Walter summarized Dr. Moore’s history and added some detail for the next fifteen years. In the following historical account, the history of AED is updated to provide details for the past five years as we approach the 80th Anniversary of AED.
The birth of AED occurred in the spring of 1926 when Dr. Sidney A. Mitchell discussed his idea of forming an honorary fraternity at the University of Alabama with fellow premedical students and Dr. Jack Montgomery, professor of organic chemistry and premedical advisor. Minutes of the first formal meeting appeared under the date of April 28th, 1926 and state: ” A meeting of about 15 premedical students was held in the lecture room of Toumey Hall for the purpose of further organizing the AED honorary premedical fraternity which has been under way for some time. The proposed constitution which had been drawn up by Mr. Mitchell was read, discussed and referred to a committee which included Mr. Mitchell with instructions to make any necessary alternations and draw up a ritual and by-laws for the fraternity. The 1926-27 school year was devoted to completing the organization of the new fraternity and developing a program of activities. The first initiation of new members was held on March 4th, 1927 following the election of eight students who had completed at least three semesters of premedical work and whose grades placed them in the upper fifth of their class and one faculty member.
The University of South Carolina became the first organization from another school to petition for a chapter and a charter and membership certificates were sent to the club which arranged a program and banquet on May 20th, 1928 and became the South Carolina Alpha Chapter. Expansion continued at that time with Alabama Beta at Samford University in Birmingham, Texas Alpha at the University of Texas on January 20th, 1929 and Texas Beta at Baylor University on April 11th, 1929.
An interesting note in the history was that the original constitution as drawn up by the founders had limited membership to male students; however, in February 1929 an amendment was adopted which admitted women to membership and two women were initiated on the date of February 15th, 1929.