Neha Patil (Editor)

Fly Club

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Fly Club

The Fly Club is a final club for male undergraduates of Harvard University. Membership is for life.


Founded 1836 as a literary society by the editors of Harvardiana, the club was granted a charter by the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity in 1837 and remained a chapter until surrendering its charter in 1865. With the graduation of the members of the class of 1868, the club was discontinued until 1878, when graduate members, including Edward Everett Hale (class of 1839) and Phillips Brooks (class of 1855), initiated undergraduates from the class of 1879, to whom the old charter was restored. In 1906, the charter was once again surrendered, and in 1910, the organization officially adopted the name "Fly Club," its unofficial title since 1885. In 1996, the Fly Club merged with the DU Club, another final club, and the combined entity retained the name "Fly Club."

Some sources maintain that the club's name was derived by combining the PH from "Alpha," the l from "Delta," and the i from "Phi," to get "Phli," pronounced "Fly".

The club motto, suggested by Prof. Morris H. Morgan (class of 1881) and adopted Feb. 1902, reads DURATURIS HAUD DURIS VINCULIS, an ablative absolute construction translated as "Bonds should be lasting, not chafing or hard."

Two Holyoke Place

Constructed in 1896, with brick facade added in 1902, the Fly clubhouse is located at Two Holyoke Place, near Harvard Square, along the "Gold Coast" of formerly private residences that now comprise Harvard's Adams House (completed 1932) The Fly sits in front of Harvard's Lowell House (1930), across Mt. Auburn St. from the Harvard Lampoon building (1909).

Fly Club Gate

The Fly Club Gate is located along the exterior of Winthrop House. An English Baroque structure, the gate was built in 1914 by a grant from members of the Fly Club. The Fly's symbol, a "leopard rampant" (known as the "Kitty"), is centered within the ironwork above the entry. Inscribed below is a dedication: "For Friendships Made in College the Fly Club in Gratitude has Built this Gate."

Notable members


  • James Bryant Conant* - 26th President of Harvard University
  • Abbott Lawrence Lowell - historian, 25th President of Harvard University
  • Charles William Eliot - 24th President of Harvard University
  • Archibald Cary Coolidge - historian, Harvard professor, first director of the Harvard University Library

  • Franklin Delano Roosevelt - 32nd President of the United States
  • Theodore Roosevelt - 26th President of the United States
  • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. - Supreme Court Justice
  • Jay Rockefeller - U.S. Senator from West Virginia
  • James Roosevelt- son of Franklin Roosevelt, U.S. Congressman (CA)
  • Deval Patrick - 71st Governor of Massachusetts
  • William Weld - 68th Governor of Massachusetts
  • Tony Lake - President Bill Clinton's National Security Advisor
  • Jared Kushner - Senior White House Adviser
  • Joseph Clark Grew - career diplomat, U.S. Ambassador to Japan 1932-1941
  • Charles Francis Adams III - skipper of America's Cup defender Resolute, 1920; inductee, America's Cup Hall of Fame; Secretary of the Navy, 1929-1932

  • Edward Everett Hale - author, historian, Unitarian minister, Chaplain to the U.S. Senate
  • Phillips Brooks - clergyman, author, lyricist

  • James Russell Lowell - poet, critic, editor, and diplomat
  • Evan Thomas - American journalist and author
  • Robert Carlock - writer, producer
  • Whit Stillman - writer, film director
  • Frederick Hubbard Gwynne - stage, film, and television actor
  • Ernest Lawrence Thayer - author of "Casey at the Bat"
  • Francis Higginson Cabot - gardener, horticulturist, founder of the Garden Conservancy, creator of Stonecrop and Les Quatre Vents, a founder of Harvard Krokodiloes
  • Herbert Dudley Hale - son of Edward Everett Hale; noted Boston and NYC architect, architect of the Fly's clubhouse at Two Holyoke Place.

  • Albert Hamilton Gordon - Wall Street entrepreneur, Chairman of Kidder Peabody
  • Louis Kane* - founder of Au Bon Pain bakery and cafĂ©

  • Lionel de Jersey Harvard* - first [collateral] descendant of John Harvard to attend Harvard College
  • * Initiated into the DU Club, which merged with the Fly Club in 1996.


    Fly Club Wikipedia