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Michigan State University

Aerospace, Military Science & R.O.T.C. Collections at the MSU Archives & Historical Collections : Archival Collections

R.O.T.C. and Military Science

Department of Aerospace Studies Records (UA 3.17.2) 

  • 11 folders 
  • The Annual Reports of the Aerospace Studies Department contain enrollment statistics, staff changes, and reports of extracurricular activities, budgetary information, listings of commissions, and information about the facilities of the department. The 1963 Report also contains a draft and the final copy of a study entitled "Who Takes R.O.T.C. at Michigan State?" by John M. Engebresten, Gordon W. Paul, and Edward P. Ozybko. Note: The Aerospace Studies Department began operation in 1951. Members of the Michigan State University Air Force R.O.T.C. program participated in parades, served in color guards, and were active in other University functions. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Military Band collection (UA 12.3.11) 

Department of Military Science/R.O.T.C. Records (UA 3.17.1) 

  • 1.2 cubic feet 
  • The collection consists of annual reports from 1885 to 1969 (with gaps) and records relating to the MSU Military Science Department/R.O.T.C. The class materials folder contains a receipt listing the uniform items issued to students, a syllabus for a class chronologically listing the subjects covered in the class and chapters in the R.O.T.C. manual, and a list of basic concepts and their definitions. There is also a folder of correspondence relating to the creation of a trophy for the top shooter on the MSU rifle team to be named after Julian W. Smith. Smith was an education professor and a member of the National Rifle Association Board of Directors. Folder 4 contains material about Civil Defense and War Bonds. There is also one issue of the newsletter the "Cadet Bulletin" from 1959 and a folder of memos, press releases, and forms from 1942-1944. The photographs in the collection consist of images from 1880-1959 and 1980s including training, drills, rifle teams, military bands, World War II trainees, trucks, tanks, maneuvers and training exercises, as well as social events and ceremonies. The slides include labeled and unlabeled slides of camps, maneuvers, vehicles, images for slide presentations, and slides produced by the U.S. military. Note: The Department of Military Science was founded in the 1884-1885 school year with the appointment of an Army officer as the Professor of Military Science and Tactics. Military training had previously existed on campus as a result of the 1862 Morrill Act, which gave each state land on which to build a college. Colleges founded as a result of the Morrill Act were required to provide military instruction. In 1888, Military Science was a required course for all male students except seniors. In 1916, a National Defense Act created the Reserve Officers' Training Corps (R.O.T.C.) and a year later the Military Science Department became part of R.O.T.C. In 1927, Demonstration Hall was constructed to be the home of the Department. In 1962, the R.O.T.C. became voluntary for male students. In 1966, the first woman enrolled in an R.O.T.C. class. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Military Education Advisory Committee Records (UA 3.17.3) 

Scabbard and Blade records (UA 12.2.40) 

Related Collections

Walter Adams Papers (UA 2.1.13) 

Associated Students of Michigan State University Records (UA 12.1.1) 

Associate Provost Records (UA 3.4) 

Paul D. Bagwell Papers (UA 1.1.6) 

John F. Brower Papers (UA 10.3.174) 

  • 1.4 cubic feet 
  • The John F. Brower papers consist of materials from his time as a student at Michigan State University including notes, class exercises, exams, textbooks, and experiments.  Also included are materials from his military science classes as well as his military service. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Leon Linton Budd Papers (UA 10.3.124) 

  • 1 scrapbook 
  • Leon Linton Budd, of Laingsburg, Michigan, was a Mechanical Engineering student at Michigan Agricultural College from 1911 to 1914.  He earned the rank of sergeant in Company D in the military science program.  He documents his life as a student at M.A.C. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Kenyon L. Butterfield Papers (UA 2.1.10) 

Committee on the Future of the University Records (UA 

  • 1 folder (Box 457, folder 23) 
  • Records of the Committee on the Future of the University include minutes, subcommittee reports, final report (1969), and various documents used by the committee in their investigation of university organization and administration at MSU, including information about compulsory R.O.T.C. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

George A. Culp Papers (UA 10.3.159) 

  • 0.4 cubic feet (Boxes 1864H-1865H) 
  • The collection contains two scrapbooks George Culp made during his college years.  They contain an R.O.T.C. certificate, and photographs of the band practicing, group shots, photos of West Point, his R.O.T.C. unit and shots of field training.  Most of the photographs are unidentified. Photocopies may be provided to researchers due to the fragile condition of the scrapbook. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Theodore Foster Papers (UA 10.3.228) 

  • 1 item (Box 2305H) 
  • The scrapbook contains photographs and programs from Camp Custer, an R.O.T.C. camp.  There is also a photograph of the Scabbard and Blade Swing Out Convocation from November 11, 1925. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

John A. Hannah Papers (UA 2.1.12) 

  • 0.5 cubic feet (Box 46, Folders 1–14, Box 55, Folder 41, Box 62, folders 59–64, Box 67, folder 25, Box 70, folders 87–89, Box 96, folders 16, 37, 64, 92, Box 97 folders 23, 64, Box 749, folder 7) 
  • The papers of John A. Hannah, MSU president from 1941 to 1969, include general R.O.T.C. files, commissioning, quotas, and convocations, as well as a 1968 R.O.T.C. incident. 
  • Finding aid to the collection: 

John Adams Henry Papers (UA 10.3.61) 

Henson Family Papers (UA 10.3.449) 

  • 0.25 cubic feet (box 3) 
  • These papers contain the diaries of Fred T. Henson from 1907 to 1944, and 1946 to 1969.  Henson was a farmer in Richland Township, Kalamazoo County, Michigan.  The diary entries cover his service days in World War I, including a stay in East Lansing, Michigan where he was a member of the Michigan Agricultural College Training Detachment.  
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

John C. Howell Papers (UA 17.7) 

  • 1 folder (Box 1006, folder 34) 
  • Howell’s collection includes information about R.O.T.C. from 1970. 
  • Finding aid to the collection: 

Frank Stewart Kedzie Papers (UA 2.1.8) 

  • 3.9 cubic feet 
  • Includes subject files for M.A.C. Alumni - War Rosters, Report on Alumni and Undergraduates in Federal Military Service 1913-1920, List of M.A.C. Alumni and Students Called to the Service, Service Records of M.A.C. Students Killed in World War I, Form for M.A.C. War Records 1919. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Harry H. Kimber Papers (UA 17.27) 

Madison Kuhn Collection (UA 17.107) 

  • 0.5 cubic feet (Box 2417, Box 2754, folder 10) 
  • Madison Kuhn’s collection contains R.O.T.C. related research notes for his book, Michigan State: the First Hundred Years (1955), photographs of R.O.T.C. coronation ball couples (1946), glass slides, and R.O.T.C. films from the 1940s. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Media Communications Records (UA 8.1.1) 

  • 4 folders (Box 1798, folder 14, Box 1875, folders 26–28) 
  • Included in the Media Communication records are R.O.T.C. subject files from 1986 through 2003, and photographs from 1958 to 1964 and 1969 to 1977. 
  • Finding aid to the collection: 

MSU Centennial Celebration Records (UA 13.3.1) 

Clarence L. Munn Papers (UA 17.75) 

William P. Peters Papers (UA 10.3.105) 

  • 1 folder 
  • The William Peters papers consist of a nine-page paper entitled "Opening Closed Doors," which describes Michigan State University from about 1926 to 1928, when Peters was a student. The paper discusses classes (physical education, English, and animal husbandry), and Reserve Officer Training Corps. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Office of the Provost, General Academic Administration Records (UA 3.6) 

  • 8 folders (Box 1287, folders 6–8, Box 1299, folder 27, Box 1303, folders 46, Box 1304, folders 1–3) 
  • This collection includes files on the R.O.T.C. at Michigan State and Dr. Walter Hollis’ visit to campus to speak at the Army R.O.T.C. banquet in 1984. 
  •  Finding aid to the collection:  

 Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Records (UA 3) 

Public Relations Records (UA 8.1) 

John B. Ranger Papers (UA 10.3.21) 

  • Scrapbook 47 
  • While a student at Michigan Agricultural College from 1917 to 1921, Ranger was a member of the Officer’s Club, Scabbard and Blade (a military science honorary), and a Lieutenant Colonel in the R.O.T.C. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Howard C. Rather Papers (UA 17.442) 

  • 0.33 cubic feet 
  • The Howard C. Rather Papers consists of Rather's correspondence and diaries documenting his experiences as an Army officer during World War I.  Covering the time period of January 1918 to May 1919, the collection includes descriptions of the people Rather dealt with every day, and the conditions he lived in, both in America and in France.  His letters home describe his training at Camp Custer (Michigan), Camp Jackson (South Carolina), Camp Merritt (New Jersey), and Saumur Artillery School in France.  The daily routine and activities around him are duly described.  He spent the last six months of the war seeing combat duty as part of a field artillery unit in France. 
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Dorsey Read Rodney Papers (UA 17.138) 

  • 0.1 cubic feet 
  • This collection contains one published copy of the “Reminiscences of Colonel Dorsey Read Rodney.”  Originally written in 1955 Rodney recounts his life up until that point, including his time at West Point, his military appointments, and his tenure at Michigan State as the head of the Military Science Program.  His insights into the changes in the military and the country in general are noted as well as the general sentiments toward these changes.   
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Robert S. Shaw Papers (UA 2.1.11) 

State News Records (UA 12.7.2) 

Don Stevens Papers (UA 1.1.2) 

  • Box 6, folders 82-84  
  • Don Stevens was a member of the Board of Trustees, Michigan State’s governing body, from 1958 to 1978.  His collection includes information about R.O.T.C. and correspondence from 1959 to 1960, and a Report on the Special Committee on R.O.T.C. from 1969. 
  • Finding aid to the collection: 

Division of University Services Records (UA 22.2) 

Vice President for Student Affairs. Student Protest Files (UA 7.0) 

Vice President for University Relations Records (UA 8) 

  • 2 folders (Box 378, folder 65, Box 402, folder 14) 
  • In James Denison’s papers (series 2) there are R.O.T.C. Convocation materials, which include an early history of military science at Michigan State.  Additionally, there are statements, news clippings, and other materials relating to strikes, protests, and demonstrations in 1970. 
  • Finding aid to the collection: 

University-Wide Task Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues Records (UA 3.22.1) 

  • 3 cubic feet 
  • The records of the University-Wide Task Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues include documents about recommendations to the University including those to the Military Education Advisory Committee about R.O.T.C. issues.    
  • Finding aid to the collection: 

Irwin B. Winsor Collection (UA 10.3.147) 

  • 4 folders 
  • The Irwin Winsor collection contains four folders of photographs.  The Military Science folder contains a group portrait of Company A, and a group portrait of Company B at Michigan State University.   
  • Finding aid to the collection:  

Lamar M. Wood Papers (UA 10.3.162) 

Jon L. Young Papers (UA 10.3.116)