Rattle 1


Installed: May 7, 1922
Rattle Delivered to Minnesota: October 29, 1922

“The pledge rattle was the outgrowth of comments at the National Convention Banquet about the ‘baby chapter’ which were relayed to us. Between dinner one evening and lunch the next day it had been independently suggested that there should be a baby chapter rattle by four of us. Probably Ed Wilsey, the first president of the Iowa Chapter was one of the four. At any rate it was Ed who maneuvered the first pledge group into making the rattle. All eight of them worked evenings on it but three of them put so much effort into it that they were offered three days off of probation week. I believe this gave them among other things the privilege of eating with the active members. These were Clarence Butler, Arnold Nesheim, and I believe, Clark Barrett. Due to machining difficulties on the rattle the planned walnut base was not made and Minnesota was told they could make the base. This may have started the tradition that each chapter should add something. The plan was that the rattle should be supplied by a dime of the year of installation of each chapter. However a few years later the United States Treasury did not cooperate.

“I might add informally that at the Minnesota installation the rattle was not completed and was represented by a ten-cent plastic one from Woolworth’s.”—Alan Rockwood


Installed: October 29, 1922
Rattle Delivered to Armour: May 26, 1923

The proposed Rattle wasn’t ready for the installation on October 29, 1922, Brother Wilsey presented a beribboned, highly painted rattle to the Minnesota chapter.


Installed: May 26, 1923
Rattle Delivered to Missouri: October 25, 1924

The originally planned Rattle 1 was delivered at the installation of the Armour chapter on May 16, 1923.  It is unknown what, if any, additions the Armour Chapter made to Rattle 1.


Installed: October 25, 1924
Rattle Delivered to Michigan: February 21, 1925

Missouri Chapter’s addition to the Rattle unknown.


Installed: February 21, 1925
Rattle Delivered to Kansas: January 8, 1927

Michigan Chapter’s addition to the Rattle unknown.


Installed: January 8, 1927
Rattle Delivered to Missouri Mines: December 10, 1927

Kansas Chapter’s addition to the Rattle unknown.

Missouri Mines

Installed: December 10, 1927
Rattle Delivered to Missouri Mines: March 3, 1928

Missouri Mines Chapter’s addition to the Rattle unknown.

Penn State

Installed: March 3, 1928
Rattle Delivered to South Dakota Mines: September 27, 1930

Penn State Chapter’s addition to the Rattle unknown.

South Dakota Mines

Installed: September 27, 1930
Rattle Delivered to Northwestern: May 25, 1935

South Dakota Mines addition to the Rattle unknown.


Installed: May 25, 1935
Rattle Delivered to Marquette: April 24, 1937
Object Added: Eyepiece

The Northwestern Chapter added an eyepiece to either side of the cylinder. An inscription on the right side of eyepiece reads “Northwestern 1935”.


Installed: April 24, 1937
Rattle Delivered to Louisville: March 22, 1941
Object Added: Slide Rule

The Marquette Chapter added a metal slide rule to the base of the triangle. The slider is set to 1937 (the year of installation). Inscribed on the bottom of the slide rule is “1937  Marquette Chapter”.


Installed: March 22, 1941
Rattle Delivered to Cornell: April 18, 1942
Object Added: Gears

The Louisville Chapter added a metal gear to the base of the rattle. A plaque on top of rotating gear reads“Louisville ’41 Count ’Em”.


Installed: April 18, 1942
Rattle Delivered to Cornell: January 8, 1955
Object Added: Flywheel governor

The Cornell Chapter added a flywheel governor to the top of the Rattle. At the time, it was touted as the only moving part of the Rattle.—Dan Rathmann.

Michigan State

Installed: January 8, 1955
Rattle Delivered to Clarkson: November 16, 1957
Object Added: Conical base

The Michigan State Chapter added a conical wooden base to the rattle. A plaque on the front center of the base reads “Michigan State Jan 8, 1955”


Installed: November 16, 1957
Rattle Delivered to UCLA: December 7, 1957
Object Added: Triangular base

The Clarkson Chapter added a large wooden triangular base to the rattle. A plaque on top of one point of the base reads “Clarkson – Nov 16, 1957”


Installed: December 7, 1957
Rattle Delivered to Nebraska: March 16, 1963
Object Added: Blue filter

The UCLA Chapter added a blue filter to the lens of the eyepiece. The filter reads “UCLA  Dec. 7, 1957”


Installed: March 16, 1963
Rattle Delivered to Iowa State: April 25, 1964
Object Added: Pair of dividers

The following was read at the Kansas State installation banquet : “A chrome plated pair of dividers, a basic tool of engineers, scientists, and architects, serves us as a symbol of measurement and exactness. From our past progress it permits planning the futures of our fraternity.”—Frank Vogt

Inscribed on dividers: “Nebraska Chapter  March 16, 1963”

Iowa State

Installed: April 25, 1964
Rattle Delivered to Kansas State: September 7, 1964
Object Added: Rotating motor

“At the Kansas State installation, Edward R. McCracken is64, Iowa State undergraduate president, stated that his chapter had motorized the Rattle to symbolize the rebirth of Triangle expansion. As the Rattle turns in all directions, we hope Triangle will expand in all directions, he asserted. Kansas State Colony President Hamlett accepted the Rattle.”—Triangle Review

“An electric powered motor now rotates the ‘Telescope’ as in a search for new bench-marks. While hidden from view, this underlying power of motivation should remind us of the hidden power of enthusiastic members in their search for new goals which can be relied upon to carry Triangle on to greater service to its members in particular and humanity in general.”—Frank Vogt

Kansas State

Installed: September 7, 1964
Rattle Delivered to Oklahoma State: November 21, 1964
Object Added: Mechanical pencil

“We at Kansas State have added a mechanical pencil to the history of the Rattle. It is our feeling that we should add the most important tool which the engineer uses. This we feel is the writing tool, the tool of communication. Looking further than the particular significance which a pencil may have for an engineer, the pencil emphasizes the importance of fostering the art of communication in our associations with those around us.”—Kansas State Active President, February 1965

Inscribed on pencil: “Kansas State Chapter September 7, 1964”

Oklahoma State

Installed: November 21, 1964
Rattle Delivered to MSOE: January 23, 1965
Object Added: Lights

“…Marty tells me you conceived and did the work on the Oklahoma State addition to the Rattle. Everyone was intrigued and impressed and those of us with Boy Scout or other Morse code training had a lot of fun reading the message. I’ll mention your contribution in the next issue of the REVIEW. It won’t give the message away to too many pledges if any. The idea of having them read the message of the lights adds an extra dimension to the Oklahoma State addition to the Rattle.”—Letter from Herb Scobie to Jack Allison, January 1965

A plaque on one side of the wooden base (added by Clarkson) reads “Oklahoma State Chapter”.


Installed: January 23, 1965
Rattle Delivered to RIT: February 4, 1967
Object Added: Metal Attachment

Engraving: “Jan 25   MSOE   1965”


Installed: February 4, 1967
Object Added: Engraved plates on conical base

“The R.I.T. chapter had chosen a simple but fitting addition. Arranged in two tiers of engraved plates encircling the conical base are the name and installation date of each chapter of Triangle from its incorporation in 1907 to the installation of R.I.T. on February 4, 1967.”—George Komorowski

After RITs additions to Rattle 1, it was retired and Rattle 2 was constructed.

Notes:  The South Dakota Mines plaque reads “11-27-30” instead of the correct date, “9-27-30”. The order of the UCLA (12-7-57) and Nebraska (3-16-63) plaques is reversed.

Features of Rattle 1 - Creators Unknown

Object: “Veritas Omnia Vincit”

Object: Chapter listing on top of cylinder

Chapter Roll

Illinois             1907           Iowa               1922          Missouri Mines               1927
Purdue           1909           Minnesota      1922          Penn State                      1928
Ohio State      1911          Armour           1923          So. Dakota Mines        1930
Wisconsin       1913         Missouri          1924
Kentucky         1920        Michigan          1925
Cincinnati        1921       Kansas              1927

(First and second columns are neatly centered around the top of the cylinder, making it possible that Kansas was the chapter that first added the names)

Object: List of Founders on back of cylinder

Founders of Triangle
April 15, 1907
(list of names)