Members of the Hamilton Chapter established the Yale Chapter of Alpha Delta Phi. Its charter members were, accordingly, themselves initiates, and its first recognition by the Fraternity in Convention antedates by nearly a year the time generally assigned to its foundation, its first meeting having been held before that of Columbia, although the latter received the earlier charter.
The Yale Chapter continued in active existence for thirty-seven years and took an important part in Fraternity government and the shaping of its policy. The Brunonian Chapter was established by a Yale delegation, and the conversion of the local society, Iota Pi Kappa, at Amherst into a Chapter of Alpha Delta Phi was likewise largely due to Yale influence and effort. The first songbook and with two exceptions, all the catalogues, until 1860, were likewise issued from Yale, while at the second convention, held in New Haven, on August 15, 1839, was delivered an address by Samuel Eells, which was the first of those public exercises that have now become a normal part of the annual celebration of most fraternities.
As a result of most unfortunate complications induced by the political and social conditions of Yale life, this Chapter suspended its activity in the spring of 1873, and voluntarily surrendered its charter at a convention held at Cornell in the same year.
In the spring of 1888, a small but earnest group, having proved the sincerity of their purposes and desires, sought and received a new charter. In the winter of 1893-1894, committees from Psi Upsilon and Delta Kappa Epsilon, existing in Yale as junior societies, met one from Alpha Delta Phi to discuss a plan by which the Yale Chapter should also become a junior society, and the three should amicably cooperate in their choice of future candidates for election. In the winter of 1894-1895 the conference was again renewed and the importance of determining the question, according to the suggestion there made, became so apparent that the Chapter entered into an agreement with the two societies named, to adopt the proposed policy, provided the consent of the Fraternity could be obtained at its next Convention. At the Convention held with the Columbia Chapter in May 1895, the Yale proposal was approved.
In 1935, after some years of deliberation as to the wisdom of such action, the Yale Chapter voluntarily withdrew from the Fraternity and surrendered its Charter to the Executive Council. The evolution of the intramural college system on the Yale campus, with the consequent segregation of the undergraduates into smaller groups, made the continued existence of junior societies like Alpha Delta Phi extremely difficult.
A chance contact between a leader of Delta Kappa Epsilon and G. Lauriston Walsh, Jr., COR 1962, led to the purchase of a building in New Haven and has rekindled efforts to reestablish the Yale Chapter. After a substantial investment of time, effort, and money by Brothers Robert G. McKelvey, MID 1959, Robert S. Price, K 1958, Governors, Field Representatives and others, twenty-two men were initiated by members of the Cornell Chapter in New Haven on April 20, 1989, and four more a day later.
The Yale Chapter was awarded its third charter in 1990, and continues to thrive on the Yale campus.