Happy Founder’s Day!

On October 6, 1898 our beloved Sinfonia was founded at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. Since then we have grown to over 120,000 living members and nearly 250 chapters. Brothers all over the country this week have been participating in our National Philanthropy – the Mills Music Mission.

Countless lives have been lifted through our gifts of music at hospitals, at nursing homes, at rehabilitation centers, at schools, at Veteran’s facilities, at vigils, and also at proposals, weddings, and funerals.

Sinfonia Today is healthy, prosperous and growing. We have increased interest in membership, our colony program continues to attract new interest groups as quickly as we “graduate” former colonies into active chapters, and we have a greater knowledge of our history, symbols and traditions than we have enjoyed since the very early days of our existence.

Founder’s Day Stats

Number of Recent National Convention: 55
Location of Recent National Convention: New Orleans, LA
Date of Recent National Convention: July 8-12, 2015
Number of Deceased Sinfonians: 13,971
Current Active Members: 7,312
Current Active Chapters: 248
Current Living Alumni: 113,038
Total Living Active and Alumni Members: 120,350
Total Chartered Chapters: 450
Total States in which Chapters have been Chartered: 44
(All states except Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island)

This past academic year we initiated 2,587 new Brothers and we cannot wait to see what the rest of the triennium holds for us. During this time, we also chartered or reactivated 4 chapters: Beta Alpha at The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga, Sigma Mu at Oakland University, Alpha Delta at Iowa State University, and Lambda Nu at The College of New Jersey. Today, we have 11 Colonies working towards reactivating or being granted a charter.

Our Brotherhood is growing and we couldn’t be more proud of the direction we are headed!

Historical Highlights

The Invitation

For years Mills had been profoundly interested in religious work, and deeply interested in the social and moral welfare of students, particularly young men.  In 1898 he asked all the male students to meet during the noon hour once a week for a half-hour prayer meeting under his leadership. In the autumn of that year he encouraged the “Old Boys” of the Conservatory to invite the “New Boys” to a “get-acquainted” reception.

The first sign that something was going to happen came with the following circular, which was [drafted September 10 and] put into the hands of all the male students of Conservatory.

There were in the neighborhood of fifty or sixty men present on the appointed evening. An unpremeditated discussion of forming a permanent organization of men students took place. The plan met with such general approval that a meeting was called for October 6, at 7.30 P. M., in the Conservatory’s Elocution Hall.

Displayed: Invitation to September 22 reception, drafted September 10, 1898. (click to enlarge)


The Sinfonia Club

At this meeting the club was born, and Frank Leslie Stone was elected its President. The minutes of the first meeting on October 6, 1898 show that the first vote taken was to organize a club, and that the second vote was “that the primary object of the club be sociability.” On October 25 the constitution was adopted, and so the club established a sense of real permanence. The charter members numbered thirteen active and one honorary—Ossian Everett Mills.

Displayed: The original Oct 6, 1898 Meeting Minutes (click to enlarge)