Secret Octagon Society

My grandfather, Harold Milne Alexander, and his brother, Robert Alexander, started a group when they were in high school called the Secret Octagon Society (SOS).

In 1989, Robert was interviewed for an oral history project about architecture at the University of California at Los Angeles. The text of the entire interview is online here.


ALEXANDER: We had a meeting once a month or more frequently. I think it was just once a month. May have been once a week, that could be. Of course the refreshments were always the most important thing. But we also had a formalized agenda. We had officers, and we studied and followed Robert’s Rules of Order. We always had a well-balanced program. Somebody played a musical instrument; somebody put on a science experiment or whatever; somebody did some entertainment like magic tricks; somebody read from Shakespeare. Everybody at the meeting participated in some way. We got on our feet formally, you know, and addressed this audience of seven people. That was good training. That was more of a hobby than anything else I can remember.

Robert Alexander was an architect and builder who is now best known for having built the Alexander homes in Las Palmas, California; Dinah ShoreDean MartinJoan CollinsMarilyn Monroe, and Frank Sinatra all lived there.

Harold Alexander headed up the research and development department at Libbey-Owens-Ford for 42 years and created the patent for the curved glass that was used in the windshields of the 1957 Chevrolets. The patent, “Method of bending and cutting sheets of glass or like materials
(US 2932129),” is online.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *