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Aryan Literary Society Records

 Collection — Box: 1-5
Identifier: 018
The Aryan Society Records are divided into four (4) series: Series 1: Minute Books, Constitution and Bylaws contains the minute books and constitution and bylaws for the organization's meetings from 1879 to 1929.  Series 2: Events and Memorbilia contains programs, invitations, memorbilia and materials relating to events hosted and sponsored by the Aryan Literary Society.  Series 3: Business Records contains bills and receipts of the organization from 1898 to 1940.  Series 4: The Aryan Review contains bound and loose copies of the society's periodical


  • 1885-1940


Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.


5.00 Boxes (4 Medium Clam Shell Boxes. 1 Small Clam Shell Box.)

5.00 Boxes


The Aryan Literary Society Records is a collection of materials relating to the society's events, business (such as bylaws and constitutions) and publications.  The Aryan Literary Society was one of two literary societies at West Chester during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  The societies served as the main social outlet for West Chester State Normal School students and also provided a place for healthy debate and publication.  The Aryan Literary Society published its own periodical, The Aryan Review, which merged with The Moore Literary Society's, Moore Literary Society Gazette, to form the first student Newspaper, the Amulet.

Arrangement Chronological

Biographical or Historical Information

The Aryan Literary Society was established in the fall of 1879 in order to offer a little friendly competition for the existing Moore Literary Society. Then Principal, George L. Maris, believed both the Normal School and the Moore Literary Society would greatly benefit from another society with similar aspirations. The organization chose the name “The Aryan Society” because the believed the term Aryan to mean “excellent” or “honorable.” The society also began publishing a paper called The Aryan Review, which later merged with the Moore’s Moore Literary Gazette to form The Amulet, the first student newspaper at West Chester. In the early days of the Normal School, the Aryan and rival Moore Literary Societies offered students a place for socializing, scholarly debating and writing as well as musical performance. They also served as the first libraries for students; the books owned by the societies later became the core collections of the library and some are still held in Special Collections. The Aryan Literary Society’s motto was Finis coronat opus or “The end crowns the work” and the colors were blue and gold. At the height of the societies' popularity almost every extracurricular event was sponsored by one or the other society and almost every student belonged to the groups and took pride in their membership.  However by the late 1930s the two societies lost favor among students as the number of other campus organizations grew and the cost ($1) of joining the societies appeared worthless.  By 1940 the two societies were no longer listed as campus organizations in the course catalogs or yearbooks.

Related Publications

The Amulet, The Moore Literary Gazette
Related Materials West Chester University Student Newspaper Digital Collection, including The Amulet. The Moore Literary Society Records.

Processing Information

Processed by Brittany Schiavo, Fall 2014.
Aryan Literary Society Records
Collection processed by Brittany Schiavo '16, Finding written by Tara Wink
Spring 2015
Description rules

Repository Details

Part of the West Chester University Archives Repository