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George Wesley Edmonds

From EverybodyWiki Bios & Wiki
George Wesley Edmonds
Born(1890-08-13)August 13, 1890
Knight Township, Vanderburgh County, Indiana, U.S.
June 13, 1962(1962-06-13) (aged 71)June 13, 1962(1962-06-13) (aged 71)
🏳️ Nationality
💼 Occupation
Co-founder of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated; Coal miner; Railroad worker
👩 Spouse(s)Willa Mae Forte

George Wesley Edmonds (August 13, 1890 – June 13, 1962) was a founder of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated. Unfortunate events resulted in Edmonds losing contact with the fraternity, and for many years not much was known about his life and whereabouts. [1] [2]


Early life[edit]

Edmonds was born on August 13, 1890, in Knight Township, Vanderburgh County, Indiana.[1] He attended Carver Elementary School, and graduated Clark High School in Evansville, Indiana in 1910.

Founding of Kappa Alpha Psi[edit]

Edmonds entered Indiana University at Bloomington in the fall of 1910. Soon thereafter, he and nine fellow classmates, all men, founded Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated, as a way to increase the ambition of black youth and encourage them to achieve more than what was expected.[3] The fraternity was the first intercollegiate fraternity incorporated as a national body.[4]

The Los Angeles Sentinel described the founding of the fraternity by Edmonds and his co-founders as "the vision of these astute men that enabled them in the school year 1910–11, more specifically the night of January 5, 1911, on the campus of Indiana University at Bloomington, Indiana, to sow the seed of a fraternal tree whose fruit is available to, and now enjoyed by, college men everywhere, regardless of their color, religion or national origin."[5]

Edmonds returned home in the summer of 1911. While there, his father died from pneumonia.[1] Edmonds withdrew from school to support his family, working as a coal miner like his father.[1] His isolation from the academic community, errors in organizational records, and the renaming of the fraternity caused Edmonds to lose contact with his co-founders and other fraternity members.

Later life[edit]

Edmonds married Willa Mae Forte and settled in Stevenson, Indiana. They had one son named Noel.[1]

Edmonds died of pneumonia June 13, 1962 and was buried in Evansville, Indiana, unbeknownst to the members of the fraternity he helped found.[2]

In 1972, Dr. Henry S. Wilson requested and received information on Edmonds from the Assistant Registrar of Indiana University.[2] In 1975, Founder Edward Giles Irvin called for a renewed surge of investigation, aided by the information gained by Wilson's request, to find the whereabouts of Edmonds.[2] Edmonds' family members were recontacted in 1975 by William E. Miller, Polemarch (or chapter chairman) of the Evansville Alumni chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, and in 1978, Edmonds burial site was finally rediscovered.[2]


A monument was designed in Edmonds' honor and on July 2, 1979 the monument was placed at Edmond's grave[2] at Oak Hill Cemetery in Evansville, Indiana.

See also[edit]

  • Kappa Alpha Psi


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "Founder: George Wesley Edmonds". Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. Official Website. Archived from the original on 20 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-13.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Bryson, Ralph J. (2003). The Story of Kappa Alpha Psi: A History of the Beginning and Development of A College Greek Letter Organization 1911-1999. Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  3. Bryson, Ralph J. (2003). The Sons of Kappa Alpha Psi: Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity and the Fight for Civil Rights. Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. Pg 1425.
  4. Biance Garwood (January 5, 2018). "Kappa Alpha Psi Celebrates 107 Years of Achievement! - Ebony magazine". www.ebony.com.
  5. Danny J. Bakewell Jr (15 March 2017). "Kappa Alpha Psi Southern California Celebrates 106 Years of Achievement - Los Angeles Sentinel". lasentinel.net.

External links[edit]

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