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Loyola University Maryland Literary Society of Loyola College records

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: LUMD-010-022

Scope and Contents

Loyola University Maryland Literary Society of Loyola College records, dated 1882-1972, consist of correspondence, journals, founding documents including iterations of the organization's constitution, meeting minutes, papers and poetry presented to the Literary Society of Loyola, and programs.


  • Creation: 1882-1972

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is located at the Loyola Notre Dame Library. Contact Archives and Special Collections for more information.

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The Loyola University Maryland Literary Society of Loyola College records are the physical property of the Archives and Special Collections, Loyola/Notre Dame Library. Copyright, except in cases where material has passed into the public domain, belongs to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns.

Biographical / Historical

A literary society existed at Loyola from the early years of the college, with the Baltimore Sun referencing a Loyola Literary Society as early as 1860. The more modern Literary Society of Loyola (LSL) was established in 1963 as a successor to Lamda Iota Tau; it was felt that membership requirements for this national society were too demanding and that Loyola would be better served with its own, more inclusive literary society. Assistant Professor Francis O. Voci (the “prospective moderator”) sent the proposed LSL constitution to the Student Council and the Council approved it on October 28, 1963. According to its constitution, LSL’s purpose was to “foster interest in the study, discussion, understanding, and appreciation of literature among the students of Loyola College” and “to stimulate interest in and to provide a medium for the improvement of oral and written expression through discussion and the presentation of papers.” To be eligible for membership a student had to complete one semester at Loyola, take one English course, have at least a 2.5 average in English courses, and have an overall average of 2.0. To be accepted for “full membership” a student had to submit “a critical or analytical paper or an original piece of work,” after which the student would present the paper at an LSL meeting.

At the first meeting of LSL on October 30, 1963, Bernard J. Vondersmith presented a paper titled “Prometheus Bound: The Light Imagery.” LSL had an initial membership of six, representing four academic majors. Subsequent meetings continued to center around the presentation of papers on literary topics, and at times by the appearance of guest lecturers and authors reading from their works. Most of these meetings drew 10-30 students and faculty.

LSL activities continued into the 1970s, although there is less evidence of student-presented papers. On July 1, 1971, the Student Government treasurer notified LSL that SG had approved a budget of $1200 for its organization with the stipulation that LSL merge with the Music Society of Loyola and become the Fine Arts Committee of Loyola College. The reason cited was that “the functions of your organizations are so closely related that this action would help prevent unnecessary duplication of effort.” At that point, LSL became a subsection of the Fine Arts Committee, although its stated purpose and membership requirements in the Committee’s new constitution remained substantially unchanged.

LSL documents in the archives do not extend beyond 1972. The last time the student government included LSL as a budgeted item was in 1975-76 (with no mention of the Fine Arts Committee). The last time the college catalog listed LSL as a student organization was in 1982-83.


.48 Cubic Feet (2 half-size legal document boxes)

Language of Materials



The Literary Society of Loyola was established as early as 1860 and continued into the 20th century. It was re-launched in 1963 as a successor to Lamda Iota Tau. This collection, dated 1882-1972, consists of correspondence, journals, meeting minutes, founding documents, papers and poetry presented to the Society, and programs.


This collection is arranged chronologically by year.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Materials in this collection were transferred to the Archives by various university offices and individuals affiliated with the university.

Processing Information

This collection was processed in 2019 by Christina Meninger.

Guide to the Loyola University Maryland Literary Society of Loyola College records
Christina Meninger and Jack Ray
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Loyola University Maryland Archives Repository

200 Winston Avenue
Baltimore MD 21212