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The History of Eta Sigma Chapter, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. Raleigh, NC

Founded by a group of business and professional college men, Eta Sigma Chapter, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated was established in Raleigh, North Carolina in 1921. Other North Carolina chapters of Phi Beta Sigma that predate Eta Sigma are Eta (1919) at NC A&T State University, Iota (1920) at Shaw University, and Delta Sigma (1920), in Winston Salem.

Brotherhood, Scholarship and Service are the foundation stones on which Phi Beta Sigma rests. Circumscribed by the national body’s motto, “Culture for Service and Service for Humanity”, Eta Sigma’s program thrusts are Education, Bigger and Better Business and Social Action.

Since its inception, members of Eta Sigma chapter, Phi Beta Sigma have played prominent roles in Business, Education, Government, Law, Religion, and Civic Affairs. Every major institution serving the Raleigh community has been the beneficiary of the labor of these members. Missions, projects and institutions experiencing the support of Eta Sigma through the years include, among others; the United Negro College Fund, the Central Orphanage of Oxford, North Carolina, Shaw University, Saint Augustine University, the O.A. Dupree Scholarship Fund, the Wiley M. Davis Scholarship Fund, The March of Dimes, the Estey Hall Foundation, the NAACP, the Dudley Flood Education Foundation, the Blue Revue and other Zeta Phi Beta activities and the Pan Hellenic Council. The Chapter cooperates with many other organizations such as the Garner Road Community Center, the North Carolina Minority Prostate Cancer Awareness Action Team and United Way.

Eta Sigma sponsors three undergraduate chapters of Phi Beta Sigma. These chapters are Iota on the campus of Shaw University, Beta Xi on the campus of Saint Augustine University, and Xi Zeta on the campus of North Carolina State University.

Leadership at the state, regional and national levels at various times has come from among the ranks of Eta Sigma Chapter. During the past twenty years, Eta Sigma has produced three Regional Directors, three State Directors, four members of the Southern Regions’ James T. Floyd Hall of Fame and three members of the national Distinguished Service Chapter, which is the highest honor that Phi Beta Sigma recognizes. Brother Jessie W. Lewis of Eta Sigma served as the 7th International President of Phi Beta Sigma, Inc. Included among the early members of Eta Sigma would be the following Brothers:

James A. Carnage, the first Black member of the Raleigh City Council and after whom Carnage Middle School in Raleigh is named.

I.M. Hatton, Official in the United Presbyterian Church

Guilbert A. Daley, Editor of the Crescent Magazine

David Best, Attorney

L. Sherrill, Executive Director of the General Baptist State Convention

Charles Dunston, Dentist

Nelson Perry, Eyes, Ears and Throat Specialist

Max King, Physician

B. Davis, Physician

W. Furlonge, Physician

George C. Debnam, Physician for whom a building on the campus of Shaw University is named.

T. Delaney, Surgeon

E. McCauley, Surgeon

O. Plummer, Physician

Harper Fleming, Dentist

Thomas Hamlin, Pharmacist

Golden Perry, Physician

Andrew J. Turner, Business Man

E. Lightner, Business Man

Jimmy Taylor, Business Man

James Boyer, President of Saint Augustine College and for whom a building on that campus is named.

Carlton J. Barber, Educator for whom a building at Fayetteville State University is named.

John Fleming, Minister and Educator, for whom a building at Shaw University is named.

A. Dupree, Educator

Eta Sigma’s membership today reflects the same demographic of its founding membership. Within its present ranks are educators of note, lawyers, judges, business owners, ministers, physicians, technologist, financial experts, bankers, state and federal personal and persons from other fields. Eta Sigma takes great pride in being an inclusive organization that welcomes all men who will dedicate themselves to the cause for which it stands.

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