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Thomas Cowan Bell Memorial Monument

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N37° 47.8709',
W122° 28.5018'

The Thomas Cowan Bell Memorial Monument was dedicated in 1933, at the Presidio in San Francisco, and honors the Founder who is remembered for demonstrating qualities of learning and powers of wisdom, particularly throughout his long and successful career in education.

Bell instilled an atmosphere of friendship in the Fraternity and had, according to Founder Runkle, an expression on his face that made one instinctively reach for his hand.

His home at Oxford was with an aunt. Out of this circumstance grew the first chapter house of Sigma Chi, as other early members of the Alpha Chapter lived either there or nearby, and ate at her well-stocked table.

Founder Runkle once wrote this of Bell: He was very studious, and stood well up toward the head of his class. With him, as with the rest of us, the Fraternity was a Holy of Holies.

After a career in education, culminating in several college presidencies, Bell retired to Oakland, Calif., where he renewed his ties with the Fraternity through the Alpha Beta Chapter, California–Berkeley, and its alumni.

Bell joined the three other surviving Founders—Caldwell, Cooper and Runkle—in 1905 at Sigma Chi's Semi-Centennial Celebration in Oxford, Ohio, and in 1915 participated in the Grand Chapter at Berkeley.

Founder Thomas Cowan Bell entered the Chapter Eternal February 3, 1919, at age 86, the day after attending an Initiation at the Alpha Beta Chapter.

Visiting the Bell Memorial Monument

If you have questions concerning the Bell Memorial Monument, or you need information on visiting the site, please contact the site’s warden, Donald P. Copeland, Jr. at (415) 699-1519, or by using the contact form on this website.

A Google map and GPS coordinates have also been provided to aid you in your quest.