Sphinx Club records

Sphinx Club records

Descriptive Summary

Repository: University of Georgia Archives
Creator: Sphinx Club.
Title: Sphinx Club records
Dates: 1912-2015
Quantity: 8.25 Linear feet 12 boxes
Coll. Number: UA0076

Biographical/Historical Note

The Sphinx Club in the oldest honorary society at the University of Georgia, recognizing students, faculty, staff and alumni who have made significant contributions to the University, the State of Georgia and the nation. The society is believed to have evolved around 1897 from an earlier society, "yukpali", which was founded in December 1896.

Members are given sequential numbers as they are initiated, with sequential letter combinations being assigned to honorary members. Pandora yearbooks from the early part of the 20th century often contain photographs from Sphinx initiations in which members appear in costume. This tradition continued as late as 1941, when the well known photo of Sphinx members mocking Governor Eugene Talmadge was taken.

Scope and Content Note

The correspondence and financial records of the 1920s provide an interesting cross section of letterhead and receipts in the Athens business community of the time. Several photographs of skits appear in this collection. There are also three DVD documentaries on the society. Of special interest is the biographical information found in the Sphinx Record and other membership information submitted over the years. Among these biographical sources are pages from a disassembled book of biographies of all members created circa 1967.


Organized into nine series: minutes and membership records; correspondence and finanacial notes; dinner and reunion correspondence; financial information; subject files; photographs, media and artifacts; ritual; operational; and biographical sheets.

Index Terms

Biography files.
Corporate minutes.
Documentary films.
Financial records.
Membership lists.
Minutes (administrative records)
University of Georgia.

General Notes

RG 6

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Sphinx Club records, UA0076, University Archives, Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.


Conditions Governing Access note

At the request of the Sphinx membership, the rituals collected in box 4 can only be examined by those Sphinx members with a valid Sphinx ID.

Conditions Governing Access note

Though the collection is open for research, the audiovisual recordings do not have reference copies; however, reference copies are available upon request. Audiovisual research requests are dependent upon the format and condition of the recordings.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing


1. Minutes and membership records

1a1Sphinx Records Book [minutes (1912-1924) and membership log and financial notes (1914-1919)], 1912-1924
2Sphinx record book [membership log], 1897-1961
3Sphinx membership [1] and [2], 1897-2011
1b4Sphinx labels and addresses, 1991
5Sphinx numerical [membership] lists [list of members with addresses and degrees], 1996-2000
6Membership lists, 2003 July 13
7[Biographical Information Project], 1964

2. Correspondence and financial notes

1b9[material], circa 1920-1928
10[Financial note], 1920
11[Correspondence and financial records], 1922
12[Correspondence and financial records], 1923
13[Correspondence and financial records], 1924
14[Correspondence and financial records], 1925
15[Correspondence and financial records], 1926
16[Correspondence and financial records], 1927
17[Correspondence and financial records, includes materials relating to the introduction of the Sphinx certificate], 1928
18Correspondence, 1938-1946
19Correspondence [includes letter from Frank Boland, class of 1897, regarding "yukpali" predecessor society to Sphinx], 1946-1950
20Correspondence, 1950-1954
21Correspondence, 1954 - 1958
22Correspondence, 1958 - 1959
23Correspondence, 1959-1961
24Correspondence, 1961-1963
25Correspondence, 1963-1964
26Correspondence, 1964-1965
27Correspondence, 1965-1967
28Correspondence, 1967-1968
29Correspondence, 1969-1969
30Correspondence, 1969-1970
31Correspondence, 1971-1978
32Correspondence, 1978-1988
33Correspondence, 1989-1999
34Sphinx current correspondence, circa 1998
35Requests for badges/pins, 1984-2004
36"Project X" project plan, 2012 spring
37Correspondence, 2016
38Correspondence, 2017
39Harley Langdale, Jr. Classroom and Center for Forest Business dedication ceremony, 2018 March 6

3. Dinner and reunion correspondence

21Sphinx reunion [correspondence, clippings and financial notes], 1963
2Early reunion correspondence, circa 1984
3Sphinx reunion correspondence [and photographs (bicentennial)], 1984-1985
4Sphinx reunion, 1989
5Sphinx luncheon, 1991 November
6Sphinx reunion, 1996 May 3
7Sphinx reunion [includes photograph of custom-made Sphinx pin & photographs of Sphinx Plaza at Ohio State University], 1996
8Sphinx dinner and campaign, 1997
8Reunion and dedication of Sphinx Honor Plaza at Tate Center, 2007-2009

4. Financial information

29Receipt book, 1924
10Sphinx society, receipts & expenditures, 1950-1967
11Sphinx check register, 1967-1981
12Bank statements, 1982-1986
13Foundation account #SR593-other income-50-R3930, 1985-2001
14Foundation acct #SR593, 1985-2001
15Foundation acct-status reports, 1991-1996
16Foundation acct #SR593-agreement, 1984
17Student activities registration, 1984-2000
30Foundation status reports-Sphinx, 2001-2006
31Sphinx financials, 2000-2003
32Sphinx financials, 2004-2009

5. Subject Files

218Sphinx charm [correspondence], 1973
19Undated items and William Tate column on history of Sphinx, Athens Observer, 1977 December 17
20Sphinx members-[biographical] information [news clippings]
21Alfred O. Halsey [biographical information]
22Jasper Dorsey [biographical information], 1990
23Sphinx at Ohio State University [information about society of same name as UGA's-see also photographs in folder 2:7]

6. Photographs, media and artifacts

224Sphinx certificates, 1920s
25Sphinx pin, circa 2003
26Photographs of Sphinx skits, 1920s
27Photographs of Sphinx groups, 1990-2002
28Initiation blindfolds
29Sphinx Banquet program-signed by attendees, 1906
33 The Lightning Bug, Volume 1, Number 6, 1926 May
This volume is an issue of a magazine published by the Lucy Cobb Endowment Fund and contains an article on the Sphinx Club.
10Sphinx statue/paperweight
3Five documentaries on DVD: "The Sphinx Club: The Early Years", "The Sphinx Club: The Counter Culture Years", "The Sphinx Club: How Sphinx Responded to Change", "The Athletes in Sphinx" and "For the Future"

7. Ritual [restricted to Sphinx Club members]

At the request of the Sphinx membership, the rituals collected in box 4 can only be examined with their approval.
4The Sphinx Ritual [Restricted to Sphinx Club members only]

8. Operational files, 2000-2015

51Sphinx, 2000
2Sphinx Peter's Files [Peter Shedd files], circa 2000
3Sphinx, 2001
4Sphinx, 2002
5Sphinx Videotaping, 2002
6Sphinx, 2003
7Sphinx Videotaping, 2003
8Sphinx, 2004
9Sphinx Videotaping, 2004
10Sphinx, 2005
11Sphinx [includes photographs of intiation of Charlayne Hunter-Gault], 2006
12Sphinx Student-Centered Garden [Proposal & Design], 1995-2001
13Jasper Dorsey Award, 2000-2002
14Sphinx, 2007
5a1Sphinx, 2013
2Sphinx, 2014
3Sphinx, 2015

9. Member biographical sheets

6Biography Sheets for Student Members 1-478, 1967
7Biography Sheets for Honorary Members A-WZ and Boards from Original Binding