It was in the autumn of 1906 that the history of Delta Sigma Pi began. Life was much different then as there were only 46 states and the major method of transportation was by train. The airplane was flown for the first time only a few years earlier. The automobile was still a "toy" for the well-to-do; there were no talking movies; radio was very new and most homes were without a telephone. It was a time after what is termed the Industrial Revolution and before the times of world wars, the Great Depression and the Age of Consumerism.
In the academic world at that time, the formation of schools of business was relatively new. There were only a handful of such schools in the United States in 1906 and one such school, known as the School of Commerce, Accounts, and Finance existed at New York University. There were approximately 300 students in attendance at this school at that time, including 70 freshmen representing the Class of 1909. Four members of that Class of 1909, previously unknown to each other, soon were to start an association that would become what is known today as the International Fraternity of Delta Sigma Pi.
These four young men met in their classes and were drawn closer together as they shared the same subway route on their way home every evening. Occasionally, other classmates came along, but the four were regularly together and it was this time together that gave them the opportunity to get to know one another, to become friends, and to discuss topics of mutual interest.
One such topic was school affairs, and the domination of one organization on campus. In the opinion of these four men, the overwhelming majority of students at New York University were ignored by this organization and, as a result, restricted from membership. These four, Alexander F. Makay, Alfred Moysello, H. Albert Tienken, and Harold V. Jacobs, decided they should do something for the benefit of the student body at large. They decided to form a club that would be open to all business students.
During that first year in school these four young men were occasionally accompanied by a fifth student who, in the spring of 1907, dropped from the group to accept the pledge of the only fraternity in the School of Commerce, Accounts, and Finance. It was at this time, and perhaps because of this incident, that they felt there was a need for two fraternities in the school, and they approached their fellow students this time with the idea of joining a fraternity. The response to their idea was very positive and, somewhat to their dismay, they found students who wanted to be initiated immediately into the proposed fraternity which was not yet organized.
Makay and Jacobs had been members of high school fraternities so they were assigned the duty of drafting a Constitution, Bylaws, and a Ritual. The Constitution was finally drafted and adopted in the fall of 1907, yet the selection of a name for the Fraternity was not completed. Nevertheless, these four men proceeded with the next major order of business which was the election of officers. Makay was elected the first president, and Jacobs and Moysello were elected treasurer and secretary, respectively. They first approached their Class of 1909 classmates and, in short order, initiated several new members. They immediately began to recruit the Class of 1910 from which they initiated several more members.
The year of 1908 was notable for the establishment of many aspects of the Fraternity which are still in existence today. While the Constitution and Ritual had already been approved, there was still no badge or "pin" as it was called at that time. In addition, the Fraternity still lacked a name. The name of the organization had a high priority and the four founders agreed upon the three words that best expressed the meaning of their Fraternity and had a friend of Moysello translate them into Greek with the resulting designation: Delta Sigma Pi. On April 2, 1908, the name Delta Sigma Pi was adopted by the membership and the bylaws were also approved at this meeting. The design of the badge was approved shortly thereafter.
On April 29, 1908, at the third official meeting of the Fraternity, the report of the committee appointed to suggest Fraternity colors was heard. A subsequent motion was made to adopt the colors purple and gold as the official colors of Delta Sigma Pi and at that meeting of the Fraternity, the colors which we know today were adopted.
In 1909 the Founders graduated, but the Fraternity was being guided and nurtured by other dedicated officers and members. As the membership continued to expand, so did the activities. A Fraternity publication made its first appearance in 1911, but was mainly an internal newsletter. The name of that publication was simply DELTASIG. By 1912, the name had been changed to THE DELTASIG and was being published in a much more professional manner. Later the name of the official publication of the Fraternity was established as The DELTASIG.
Also established in 1912 was the Delta Sigma Pi Scholarship Key. This award was developed to recognize the outstanding male senior in the Business school and, eventually, was allowed to be presented in every business school where a chapter of Delta Sigma Pi was active. Many of the early keys presented nationwide were won by members of Delta Sigma Pi; however, the Delta Sigma Pi Scholarship Key was at that time and continues today to be awarded to the most outstanding male or female senior in the School of Business where a chapter of the Fraternity is active.
In these early years, the Founders and their fellow Brothers realized significant progress and set the foundation for an organization that has touched the lives of over 200,000 students of business.