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The University Archives serves as the collective memory of the University of Maryland, from the granting of the charter for the Maryland Agricultural College on March 6, 1856, to the present day.

Established by the Board of Regents in 1972, the Archives is the official repository for all of the university’s permanent records and actively gathers administrative files, university publications, photographs, audiovisual materials, and memorabilia that document all aspects of campus life.

Visit the University Archives website at www.lib.umd.edu/univarchives

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Ghostly Encounters: Ghosts in the Greek houses

Now that you’ve had time to make a midnight trip to the McNamee cemetery, let’s move on to something that might hit a little closer to home.  Our haunting tales this week arise from the homes of a number of our Greek chapters at UMD.

Let’s start with the victim of a grisly murder.  Kappa Delta house is allegedly haunted by the spirit of Alma Preinkert.  Miss Preinkert was a beloved figure at the university and the founder of the Kappa Delta sorority.  She is also the namesake for Preinkert Field House on the south side of the campus.

Poor Alma Preinkert – she didn’t even see her death coming. We wonder if she even realizes what happened. She still seems to visit her sorority house often enough . . .

Poor Alma Preinkert – she didn’t even see her death coming. We wonder if she even realizes what happened. She still seems to visit her sorority house often enough . . .

Miss Preinkert served as campus registrar from 1919 until she met her untimely end in 1954.  One night she was at home in Washington, DC, asleep in her bed, when she awoke to find an intruder in her house.  She apparently tried to stop the man from ransacking her home, but the struggle led to bloodshed.  The intruder stabbed Miss Preinkert multiple times, and she eventually succumbed to her wounds.  Police were never able to find the murderer, so Miss Preinkert’s case is still unsolved.  Perhaps that’s why she visits the sisters of Kappa Delta so often.  Maybe she just wants someone to listen to her story.

But that’s not all.  The Kappa Delta house is full of spirit activity.  Sisters have also observed mysterious girls in white dresses dancing on the sundeck of the house during the summer months.  Are these ghosts former sorority sisters?  Or something older?

Maybe these May Day dancers are still dancing across the deck at the Kappa Delta house.

Maybe these May Day dancers are still dancing across the deck at the Kappa Delta house.

The sisters of Alpha Omicron Pi have ghosts of their own.  In their house there are tales of music playing without warning and computers operating on their own.  Racks of accessories have fallen over unaided, and at least one sister has seen a set of red eyes staring at her.  Could they have a poltergeist in the house?

But the sororities are not the only groups with ghostly frights.  The brothers living in Delta Tau Delta believe the ghost of a dead fraternity brother haunts their house.  The spectral student was killed in an automobile accident in 1955.  Shortly after the accident, the brothers witnessed furniture moving around in the house on its own accord.  Strangely enough, a cabinet belonging to the deceased was always warmer on the inside than the rest of the room.  The brothers have even reported seeing reflections of a person’s face on a blank television screen when no one else was around.  Is this ghoulish brother still living in the house?

We’re nearing the end of our month-long ghost tour of campus. Only one more week to go! While you’re eagerly awaiting the next post (or hiding in your closet), take a look back at the ghosts from week 1week 2, and week 3.

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