memories and music

Katharine McReynolds was elected President of Alpha chapter in March 1888,

having enrolled at DePauw the previous fall. It appears that she left DePauw after one year.

According to Katharine: “At the close of that happy year I left Indiana for my future home in Washington, D.C.,

and unfortunately have been destined never to see DePauw again….” Regardless of the shortness of her stay on campus, her connection with Alpha Chi Omega left an indelible impression on her.

At the time of the Fraternity’s commemoration of its 50th anniversary, Katharine wrote an article for The Lyre entitled “Reminiscences of Fifty Years Ago.”

There is no other recounting of Alpha Chi Omega’s earliest years that offers the delightful details and vivid descriptions of college life at DePauw and Fraternity activities that Katharine’s recollections provide.

The article is reprinted on pages 97-103 in its entirety. The 1916 History includes Katharine in its section dedicated to “prominent members.”

Katharine received training in Germany and in 1895, together with Fraulein Fanny Koehle, founded the McReynolds-Koehle Music School of Washington, D. C., “which for nineteen years held high standing in the community.”

While principal of the McReynolds-Koehle Music School, Katharine originated a preparatory method for the teaching of beginners in music and a teachers’ training course.

The school closed when Katharine gave up her professional career to become the wife of Hon. Martin A. Morrison, Representative of the 9th District of Indiana in the Congress.

It was not uncommon for articles authored by Katharine to appear in The Lyre. She addressed subjects such as: “Some Practical Advice to Music Students,” and “Musical Instruments of the Present.”

Since many collegians were music students and many alumnae were music teachers, these articles must have been interesting and helpful.

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