The Alpha Xi chapter of Sigma Chi owes its origin to Charles L. Smith. In the fall of 1883 Charles L. Smith was a member of an anti-fraternity organization. The spirit of this group had become so distasteful to him that he decided to separate himself from this group. Wanting to join another organization he was shunned by the other four fraternities on campus because of his former membership in the anti-fraternity organization. For these reasons he decided that it was time to start a fifth fraternity at the University of Kansas.
After numerous attempts by other organizations to de-rail the plans of Charles L. Smith, he was granted the opportunity to establish the fifth fraternity at the University of Kansas. Reverend Alaric S. Embree (alumnus) and William H. Lichty of the Alpha Epsilon chapter of Sigma Chi were chosen to institute the new Alpha Xi chapter of Sigma Chi. The ceremonies were held on May 23, 1884.