FarmHouse Conclave at Purdue University
FarmHouse as a club
In the spring of 1949, the perennial feeling that there was a need for another agricultural fraternity at Purdue began to gel.
Officers of the National Executive Board met with FarmHouse alumni on the Purdue Staff. No definite action was taken at this time, but in September of 1949, a group of agricultural students inspired by Charles Kyd, Missouri, a graduate student at Purdue, began the work of establishing a FarmHouse chapter. With the help of Henry Mayo, Minnesota, and Dr. George Fallkenburg, Illinois, this group of students met, elected officers and drew up a constitution which was approved by the University on February 17, 1950. Ed Hornback served as our first president and Van Holsapple was our first secretary. They were responsible for the development and acceptance of the first constitution, which was revised in the spring of 1954 and again in 1957.
Our first pledge class was initiated on February 22, 1950. During the spring semester, with the help of our faculty advisors, the late O.M. Long and his assistant, Bill Yaw, a house was selected and leased for three years. In May of 1950, Professor W.T. Anderson (who took a very active interest in the young group) of the Animal Husbandry Staff was made an Associate Member. We moved into the house at 147 Sheetz Street in September 1950.
On December 14, 1950 our young fraternity received a staggering blow. Fire broke out upstairs about noon in which enough damage was sustained that we had to move out for several months. By procuring University housing, we were able to stay together. By helping out with repairs, we were able to move back in early March. The beginning of the fall semester found everyone hurrying back to renew old acquaintances and to make new ones. We began to develop participation in Interfraternity sports and enlarge in the number and kind of social events. Long range plans for our national initiation were then started, everyone pitched in to help redecorate the inside of the house, locate housing facilities for our guests, plan the program and of course, find enough Installation Dance dates for the many visitors. On April 16, 1952, after proving our worthiness and our future capabilities, the Purdue Chapter was installed as the twelfth link in the chain of FarmHouse chapters.
FarmHouse on Sheetz Street as an active chapter
Tremendous advances were made in the next year. We expanded our participation in campus affairs, expanded our scope in activities, and increased the fellowship within our group. The next big step was the purchase of the property at 153 Sheetz Street. By doing summer remodeling, we were able to move into the house in September. Then in 1957, an addition connecting the two houses became a reality doubling the size of our living facilities.
In the fall of 1958, the spring pledge class as well as the active chapter built the patio which served as the entrance to the house. In October, 1958, the 20th Biennial Conclave of FarmHouse was held on the Purdue Campus, with the Purdue Chapter as host.
Desire for a new house was constantly present at the Sheetz Street houses. In 1957, a building fund was set up to finance a new house. However, it was 1965 before the first big bond drive took place. After that drive, the new house looked like more of a reality.
Current FarmHouse on State Street
On October3, 1966, groundbreaking took place. Members of the house found other sources of housing while the construction took place. Many hardships were endured at this time. This new structure is truly an example of sacrifice of time, pleasures, and comforts.
The Purdue Chapter hosted the National FarmHouse Conclave for the second time in 1974. Dan Webb was the conclave chairman. The Purdue Chapter won chapter achievement award in the areas of financial management, and individual activities.
In 1976, 1978, and 1982 Purdue Chapter again won the Alumni Relations Award at Conclave. 1984 however, was one of our biggest wins yet as we walked away with the Alumni Relations, Brotherhood, and Chapter Unity, and the Scholarship and Chapter Achievement awards. In addition to this, the Purdue Chapter was also named as a Gold Star Chapter. At the 1986 Conclave, the Purdue Chapter received the Gold Star Chapter and was runner-up for the outstanding chapter. In 1992, Purdue Chapter won the Chapter Achievement, Community Service, and Philanthropy, Social Competence, Outstanding Chapter award, and the Spiritual Growth and Development Award.
In 2006 and 2007 Purdue Chapter was awarded with the R.B. Stewart Excellence award. In 2008 FarmHouse was honored to call one of their own, Eric Barnard, the Student Body President of Purdue.