Phi Kappa Sigma
Phi Kappa Sigma coat of arms.png
FoundedOctober 19, 1850; 172 years ago (1850-10-19)
University of Pennsylvania
United States
Mottos"Men of Honor Since 1850", "Once a Phi Kap, Always a Phi Kap", "Brotherhood is More Than Skin Deep", Stellis Aequus Durando ("Equal to the Stars in Endurance")
Colors  Black
  Old Gold
SymbolMaltese Cross
Phi Kappa Sigma flag.jpg
FlowerYellow Chrysanthemum
PublicationMaltese Cross Magazine
PhilanthropyLeukemia & Lymphoma Society
Chapters38 active, 6 colonies
NicknameSkulls, Skullhouse, Phi Kap, PKS
Headquarters716 Adams St, STE A
Carmel, IN 46032
United States

Phi Kappa Sigma (ΦΚΣ) is an international all-male college secret society and social fraternity. While nicknames differ from institution to institution, the most common nicknames for the fraternity are Skulls, Skullhouse, Phi Kap, and PKS (the first two because of the skull and crossbones on the fraternity's badge and coat of arms). Phi Kappa Sigma was founded by Dr. Samuel Brown Wylie Mitchell at the University of Pennsylvania. Mitchell recorded the initial ideas and concepts of Phi Kappa Sigma on August 16, 1850. He then began to discuss the idea with other students, first Charles Hare Hutchinson, and then Alfred Victor du Pont (son of Alfred V. du Pont), John Thorne Stone, Andrew Adams Ripka, James Bayard Hodge, and Duane Williams. The seven men formally founded the fraternity on October 19, 1850 becoming the founding fathers of Phi Kappa Sigma[1] Phi Kappa Sigma is a charter member of the North American Interfraternity Conference, and since 2017, is headquartered in Carmel, Indiana. Prior to that, starting with its founding in 1850, the fraternity was based out of Philadelphia, Valley Forge and Chester Springs, Pennsylvania.


The fraternity's badge was designed by its founder, Dr. Samuel Brown Wylie Mitchell. Outside of changes in size, its official design has remained the same. In the shape of a cross pattée, the badge is old gold with black decoration. The center of the cross is anchored by a skull and crossbones. The four leaves of the cross display, individually, the Greek letters Phi, Kappa, and Sigma, starting at the left leaf and rotating counter-clockwise. The fourth and top leaf display a six-pointed star. The back of the badge has an engraved serpent echoing the serpent from the fraternity's coat of arms.

Chapter listing

See List of Phi Kappa Sigma chapters

Notable members

The Phi Kappa Sigma chapter at Washington & Jefferson College in 1872
The Phi Kappa Sigma chapter at Washington & Jefferson College in 1872

See also


  1. ^ "Phi Kappa Sigma International Fraternity – History". Archived from the original on October 28, 2002. Retrieved March 20, 2007.
  2. ^ "NASA Bio of Chaffee". Archived from the original on July 23, 2011. Retrieved April 4, 2008.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Famous Phi Kaps, Greek 101". Retrieved 2008-04-06.
  4. ^ "Phi Kappa Sigma Maltese Cross 2003" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on May 15, 2008. Retrieved April 4, 2008.