Looking up and learning new stuff about Philo can be a very rewarding experience. It's also a great way to help fill out this wiki. There are three major sources. The University Archives, the Philolexian Library, and the Internet.

There are a lot of ways to start your search. Read through what's already on the wiki. Read through something in the bibliography. Visit the Archives or the Library, pull some material, and read it. Or, maybe you heard about something, or of something, and you want to find out more.

The University Archives are located on the 6th floor of Butler Library. They have all kinds of cool stuff up there. If you ever wanted to know anything about Columbia, this is the place to go. The librarians are friendly. Jocelyn Wilk in particular has dealt with curious philos before.

Most importantly, the archives has three boxes of materials related to philo. These include news clippings, old handbooks, and all kinds of other good stuff. There's a ton of information in there. In addition, the archives has some old photographs, and a box of materials related to the ?Peithologian Society, and materials related to other literary organizations at Columbia. This is your best one stop shop. The problem is that they're sticklers about rules, and they charge a lot of money to scan anything. Outside of early editions of Surgam, the University Archives only really cover the first 165 or so years of Philo.

The ?Philolexian Library offers a different set of resources. First, it offers a lot of old stuff as well, though not as much as the Uni Archives. Philo is in possession of its own copies of a number of old publications and handbooks. In addition, somebody made photocopies of a lot of the stuff in the Uni Archives, and we have all that in the library. I don't know how extensive the photocopy collection is with respect to what's in the boxes in the Uni Archives, but it's a solid corpus of documents, and unlike the Archives, you can take that stuff back to your room to work with.

The Philo Library's real strength is that it is the repository of everything post-Resurgam. This is where you'll find old scriba notebooks with meeting minutes from the nineties, old Past kilmer winners poems, old copies of Surgam, new member night petitions, literary exercises, and who knows what else. There are also various attempts at recording philolexiana down for posterity (e.g. explanations of various memes like the obsequious address, "?pith", etc.) buried in there that have been lost to time and should be put here. This stuff hasnt gotten nearly as much attention as it should have. ?Michelle Pentecost made a valiant attempt to establish a filing system and organized all the old stuff.

The Internet is another great resource for doing research. Sadly, not everything in the Philolexian Bibliography is online, but there's a lot of other stuff. First rule, Google Books is your friend, as is google generally. Plug in a term and see what pops up. Use quotation marks to narrow your search. Also check out the New York Times and do an archive search. Anything that's in the public domain (prior to 1923) they let you access for free. You'll find some wonderfully quirky stuff in there, like this.

The beauty of Google Books in particular is that they've scanned a lot of Columbia related materials that mention Philo (though it's gotten a little tougher to sort through the useless hits that have started to turn up since they expanded their scanning). These include old university reports, old yearbook type books, and so forth.

The Philolexian Society
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