There are many versions of this fable and its origin is unknown. The only question to ask now is: fact or fiction?
“Yeah I have heard heard of the myth,” said Carly Knowles, sophomore in public relations. “The version I’ve heard is that they were not allowed because
many people would have viewed them as brothels.”
Knowles said she finds it disappointing people would view sorority houses in that
light. Hearing the myth doesn’t stop Knowles from having her own theory. “My theory as to why we still don’t have them is because Auburn has never had them in the past and just wants to keep the tradition,” Knowles said.
However, more than one version of the story exists.
“The only myth I have heard is that an older woman gave large amounts of money to the school and that she said houses for sorori- ties would be considered brothels,” said Kara Ashby, undeclared sophomore.
Ashby said she admitted she believed this myth until she did some research of her own and found this myth circulates most campuses that do not have sorority houses.
Ashby said she thinks it is interesting this myth is not unique to Auburn and is passed around at other universities lacking sorority houses.
“I think that schools without sorority houses just don’t want to spend money building them,” Ashby said.
The myth is actually false, said Kim Trupp, director of housing and residence of Auburn.
“There is no stipulation that hinders sororities from having houses on the Auburn campus,” Trupp said.
In fact, sororities at Auburn have been given every opportunity to build houses, but have opted to stay on halls in dormitories.
Panhellenic opted to move from The Hill dormitories to a more contemporary structure in The Village because its chapter rooms were too small for the number of girls attending the meetings each week and did not meet fire code regulations, Trupp said. Along with the opportunity to move to The Jan. 29 Village, they also had the choice to move off campus and build a house, completely debunking the myth. “I personally think that sorority houses would be a great thing to have at Auburn,” Ashby said.
Historically speaking, myths are often coupled with tradition, so it is not surprising to hear this off-spun fable spread by word-of-mouth communication.
Knowing they are not bound by a contract established by an old lady with a large dowry, sororities may or may not decide to remain on campus in the future.