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Legends
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Legend

“In 1920, one of the personal habits and customs of most Americans suddenly came to a halt. The Eighteenth Amendment was put into effect, which effectively put the end to the importing, exporting, transporting, selling, and manufacturing of liquor and alcohol. This was the dawning of bootlegging, which rapidly swept across America in the early 20th century.

Paddy Murphy, according to SAE legend, was a bootlegger who was doing deals with Al Capone. During one of the arrangements, Elliot Ness and his company of crime fighters stormed in on the affair to apprehend Murphy. However, when Ness signaled for Murphy to surrender, he instead reached for a gun, and Ness shot him down.
As Murphy fell to the ground, dying of a wound inflicted by Ness, he gave Ness the secret handshake that only the brothers of SAE know. Ness, an SAE himself, realized that he had killed a brother of his fraternity. Ness ordered that Paddy Murphy have an honorary burial, in recognition of his fallen brother.” (Adam Block).
I was told this story on two different occasions from two Sigma Alpha Epsilon members. However they are from different universities and as a result there was discrepancies in there versions. Both informants were uncertain of the exact details of their stories, but there were still distinct differences in their versions. Although the story began about one man, over time as the story has been retold it has been slightly altered and a result the same story takes on many varying versions.

They both believed to some extent that they story had a basis of validity but had been exaggerated over time.

The story sounds logical in some regards to me as historical facts are incorporated in the story. The beginning of the story sounds reasonable yet the ending where the man does the Sigma Alpha Epsilon secret handshake sounds a little but suspicious. It did not seem clear how Paddy Murphy knew that Ness was a member of his fraternity in order to give the secret handshake.

The story does show the ideals that a fraternity tries to represent. Although

Paddy Murphy did commit an illegal act because he was a “brother” to Ness he was given a proper burial and was treated with respect after his death. The idea of a fraternity stipulates that each brother needs to support one another. Ness would not have provided a proper burial for the fallen Paddy Murphy had it been a person with whom he had no relation with. Yet as soon as he realized it was one of his brothers the situation changed.

The Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity house most likely uses this story to illustrate to its members the strengths of the bonds that exist between fraternity members. It emphasizes the ideas of understanding and respect when it comes to situations involving fraternity brothers.

This story has been adapted over time and most likely if members of this fraternity house from other schools would recite this story there would be minor modifications to it as well. The story is used not for its plot and exact details but more for the ideals that the story represents.

“In 1920, one of the personal habits and customs of most Americans suddenly came to a halt. The Eighteenth Amendment was put into effect, which effectively put the end to the importing, exporting, transporting, selling, and manufacturing of liquor and alcohol. This was the dawning of bootlegging, which rapidly swept across America in the early 20th century.

Paddy Murphy, according to SAE legend, was a bootlegger who was doing deals with Al Capone. During one of the arrangements, Elliot Ness and his company of crime fighters stormed in on the affair to apprehend Murphy. However, when Ness signaled for Murphy to surrender, he instead reached for a gun, and Ness shot him down.
As Murphy fell to the ground, dying of a wound inflicted by Ness, he gave Ness the secret handshake that only the brothers of SAE know. Ness, an SAE himself, realized that he had killed a brother of his fraternity. Ness ordered that Paddy Murphy have an honorary burial, in recognition of his fallen brother.” (Adam Block).
I was told this story on two different occasions from two Sigma Alpha Epsilon members. However they are from different universities and as a result there was discrepancies in there versions. Both informants were uncertain of the exact details of their stories, but there were still distinct differences in their versions. Although the story began about one man, over time as the story has been retold it has been slightly altered and a result the same story takes on many varying versions.

They both believed to some extent that they story had a basis of validity but had been exaggerated over time.

The story sounds logical in some regards to me as historical facts are incorporated in the story. The beginning of the story sounds reasonable yet the ending where the man does the Sigma Alpha Epsilon secret handshake sounds a little but suspicious. It did not seem clear how Paddy Murphy knew that Ness was a member of his fraternity in order to give the secret handshake.

The story does show the ideals that a fraternity tries to represent. Although

Paddy Murphy did commit an illegal act because he was a “brother” to Ness he was given a proper burial and was treated with respect after his death. The idea of a fraternity stipulates that each brother needs to support one another. Ness would not have provided a proper burial for the fallen Paddy Murphy had it been a person with whom he had no relation with. Yet as soon as he realized it was one of his brothers the situation changed.

The Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity house most likely uses this story to illustrate to its members the strengths of the bonds that exist between fraternity members. It emphasizes the ideas of understanding and respect when it comes to situations involving fraternity brothers.

This story has been adapted over time and most likely if members of this fraternity house from other schools would recite this story there would be minor modifications to it as well. The story is used not for its plot and exact details but more for the ideals that the story represents.

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