Forest H. Akers Papers
UA.1.1.1

Summary Information

Repository
Michigan State University Archives and Historical Collections
Creator
Akers, Forest H., 1886-1966
Title
Forest H. Akers papers
ID
UA.1.1.1
Date [inclusive]
1898-1965
Extent
10.0 Cubic feet
Language
English

Preferred Citation

Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: "Item title, Collection title, Collection Identifier, Michigan State University Archives & Historical Collections, East Lansing, Michigan."

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Biographical Note

A member of the Board of Trustees from 1939 to 1957, Forest H. Akers was also among the University's most generous benefactors. Akers was born on December 21, 1886, on a farm near Williamston, approximately 20 miles from East Lansing. He attended the University, then know as the Michigan Agricultural College, from 1905 to 1908. It is said he was asked to leave the college after the 1907 year due to disciplinary issues and poor grades. Akers was accused of lighting a powder keg during Teddy Roosevelt's speech at the school's semi-centennial celebration. Akers denied the allegation.

Upon leaving MAC, Akers worked for $60 a month as a plow and farm machinery salesman until joining the Reo Motor Car Co. in 1914. He advanced to sales manager in 1917. In 1920 he joined the Dodge Division of the Chrysler Corp. and was promoted to manager of the Detroit region in 1930 and to Vice President in 1938. He retired from Chrysler in 1947.

Akers was first elected to the State Board of Agriculture (the former name of the Board of Trustees) in 1939. He was re-elected to six year terms in 1945 and 1951. The University named a residence hall in his honor when Akers retired from the MSU governing board in 1957. He was named trustee emeritus of MSU in 1958, and was awarded an honorary doctor of laws that same year.

As a benefactor, Akers donated the University's two golf courses and a $45,000 scholarship and loan fund, valued at $200,000 in 1966. Akers remained active in MSU affairs throughout his later years when he was president of the Dependable Insurance Corp. of Jacksonville, Florida.

Akers died December 8, 1966 at the age of 79 in Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, after a long illness.

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Scope and Contents note

The Forest Akers papers include correspondence, speeches, news clippings and other materials related to Michigan State University; a variety of educational materials, legal documents, and articles; a history of Williamston, Michigan; and personal papers including Akers' class reunion information (1950) and a certificate of appointment to the State Board of Agriculture. Scrapbooks contain family photographs and photographs and other information relating to Chrysler Corporation.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Michigan State University Archives and Historical Collections

Conrad Hall
888 Wilson Road, Room 101
East Lansing , MI, 48824
517-355-2330
archives@msu.edu

Revision Description

  January 2012

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Legal Status

Copyright: Michigan State University. Property Rights: Michigan State University.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from this collection must be obtained from University Archives & Historical Collections, Michigan State University.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Dodge Brothers. -- Chronological subdivision--1917-1948;
  • Michigan State University. -- General subdivision--Forest Akers Golf Course;
  • Reo Motor Car Company. -- Chronological subdivision--1914-1917;

Genre(s)

  • Letters (correspondence)
  • Photographs
  • Postcards
  • Scrapbooks

Geographic Name(s)

  • Williamston (Mich.)

Personal Name(s)

  • Akers, Forest H., 1886-1966
  • Breslin, Jack
  • Hannah, John A., 1902-1991
  • Munn, Clarence L.

Subject(s)

  • Automobiles -- History
  • Football
  • Practical jokes
  • Scholarships

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Collection Inventory

Papers 

Correspondence 

Drawer Folder

 1909-1940 

F.D. 1

 December 17, 1947-January 10, 1948 

F.D. 2

 January 10, 1948-December 29, 1948 

F.D. 3

 1949 

F.D. 4

 1951 

F.D. 5

 1964-1966 

F.D. 6
Box Folder

 1952-1957 

2982 1

Non-MSU January-May 1958 

2982 2

Non-MSU June-October 1958 

2982 3

 January-May 1958 

2982 4

 June-December 1958 

2982 5

 January-June 1959 

2982 6

 July-December 1959 

2982 7

 1960 

2982 8

 January-October 1961 

2982 9

 November-December 1961 

2982 10

 January-May 1962 

2982 11

 June-September 1962 

2982 12

 October-December 1962 

2982 13

Non-MSU, A-E 1962 

2982 14

Non-MSU, F-H 1962 

2982 15

Non-MSU, K-P 1962 

2982 16

West Coast trip September 29, 1962 

2982 17

Scholarships January-June 1963 

2982 18

Scholarships July-August 1963 

2982 19

Scholarships September-October 1963 

2982 20

Scholarships November-December 1963 

2982 21

 January –March 1964 

2982 22

 April-June 1964 

2982 23

 July-August 1964 

2982 24

 September 1964 

2982 25

 October 1964 

2982 26

 November 1964 

2982 27

 December 1964 

2982 28

Jacksonville, Florida 1951, 1957-1961 

2982 29

Jacksonville, Florida 1962 

2982 30

Testimonials and Speeches 

Drawer Folder

 1947-1948 

F.D. 7

 Undated 

F.D. 8
Drawer Folder

Educational Materials 1898-1908 

F.D. 9

General Douglas MacArthur Commencement Speech 1961 

F.D. 10

Class Reunion 1950 

F.D. 11

Newspaper Clippings 

Drawer Folder

 1904 

F.D. 12

 1947-1948 

F.D. 13

 1958-1963 

F.D. 14

Magazine Articles 

Drawer Folder

 1948 

F.D. 15

 1962 

F.D. 16

 1968 

F.D. 17
Drawer Folder

History of Williamston 1838-1963 

F.D. 18

Legal Documents 1917-1958 

F.D. 19

Miscellaneous 

Drawer Folder

 1898-1965 

F.D. 20

 Undated 

F.D. 21
Drawer Folder

Scrapbook #127 – Photos of Dodge family dinner 1947 

F.D. 22

Scrapbook #128 – Photos of breakfast party 1945 

F.D. 23

Scrapbooks 

Volume

Scrapbook #123: Family photos, letters, clippings, memorabilia 1911-1964 

Scrapbook #123

Scrapbook #124: Michigan State University. Photos, letters, clippings, MSU golf course 1930-1965 

Scrapbook #124

Scrapbook #125: Photos of Palo Alto Conference 1939-1962 

Scrapbook #125

Scrapbook #126: Clippings - Chrysler Corporation John Hannah, sports 1938-1948 

Scrapbook #126

Scrapbook #129: Personal photo album, postcards 1907-1962 

Scrapbook #129

Scrapbook #130-134: Akers' retirement from Chrysler 1947 

Scrapbook #130-134

Scrapbook #135: "The Automobile Story" photos, clippings 1910-1965 

Scrapbook #135

Scrapbook #136: Photos of South America, 1943 1943 

Scrapbook #136

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Photographic Images 

Drawer

Collection Photographs - Prints 

Collection Photo Drawer

Homes 

Homes. Interiors 

Michigan. Williamston 

Michigan State University 

Alumni. Class Reunions 

Athletics. Baseball 

Athletics. Chester L. Brewer. Award 

Athletics. Football 

Board of Trustees 

Buildings. Akers Hall 

Buildings. Beaumont Tower 

Commencement, 1952 

Commencement 1958 

Engine 1225 

Scenes. Forest Akers Golf Course 

Offices 

People 

Akers, Forest H. (folders 1-3) 

Akers, Mr. & Mrs. Forest H. 

Akers Family 

Groups 

Groups. Unidentified (folders 1-8) 

Unidentified 

Casey Stengel Circa 1958 

Box
2982
Folder
31

Bill Norman Circa 1958 

2982 31

Recreation. Golf 

People Photographs - Prints 

People

People. Akers, Forest H. 

Oversized Photographs 

Box
OS 11

People. Groups 

Unidentified (6) 1923 

People. Akers, Forest H. (7) 

Unidentified (3) 

item

Lantern Slide - Dodge Brothers undated 

lantern slide

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Postcards 

Drawer
Postcards

People. Akers, Forest H. (5) 

People. Akers, Mr. & Mrs. Forest H. (3) 

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Oversized Materials 

Drawer
Oversized Drawer 4

Certificate of Election to the State Board of Agriculture 1957 

Resolution commending John A. Hannah for his services to MSU 1951 

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