Joseph A. Bulkeley Papers

Summary Information

Michigan State University Archives and Historical Collections
Bulkeley, Joseph Arthur
Joseph A. Bulkeley papers
1897-1898, undated
0.1 Cubic feet , 1 folder

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."

Return to Table of Contents »

Biographical Note

Joseph A. Bulkeley was an Australian who earned his B.S. degree in Agriculture from Michigan Agricultural College (now Michigan State University) in 1899. He was born in Australia in August 1875. His early education is unknown but he attended the Hawkesbury Agricultural College, a technical college from 1895 to 1897 and was top of the class in 1897. In that year the New South Wales government established a scholarship for gifted agricultural students as follows:

“In connection with the traveling scholarship offered by the Government for competition among diploma students of the Hawkesbury Agricultural College, the preliminary examination for which was held last week, the board appointed to award the scholarship met yesterday, and unanimously recommended Mr. J.A. Bulkeley for the distinction. Mr. Bulkeley not only came out first in the examination, but his work showed the greatest aptitude for taking advantage of the tuition offered. The board decided that Mr. Bulkeley should be sent for a short time to the various experimental farms to acquire a general knowledge of their working, and then go in for a two years’ course in one of the American colleges. The Minister approved of the board’s recommendation. On his return to this colony Mr. Bulkeley will act as instructor under the Department of Agriculture. [E(vening?) News 18 March 1897]”

He left Sydney in August 1897, traveled through Hawaii, Vancouver and Chicago and arrived in Lansing in September 1897. During his time at Lansing he traveled extensive around the U.S. visiting renowned farms, agricultural equipment makers and experimental farms. He wrote extensive letters home.

His final years are a mystery. He got a job with the NSW Department of Agriculture in 1899 but fell off a horse in 1901 and was injured badly. He seems to have recovered fully from that injury and worked again for the department between mid 1903 and 1904. He stopped working for the government but seems to have been known to his family – letters refer to “giving love to Joe” etc. The last located record of him is from 1908. (Biography provided by donor.)

Return to Table of Contents »

Scope and Content

Joseph Bulkeley papers consist of transcripts of letters describing life at Michigan Agricultural College (1897-1898) and the writer's observations in his extensive travels around the United States. Added as a second accession is a set of transcribed letters of Joseph Bulkeley in the United States 1897-1899. It was edited by David Howell.

Return to Table of Contents »

Administrative Information

Publication Information

Michigan State University Archives and Historical Collections November 1981

Conrad Hall
888 Wilson Road, Room 101
East Lansing , MI, 48824

Revision Description

  April 2012

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Legal Status note

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.

Return to Table of Contents »

Related Materials

Related Archival Materials

See photograph of Joseph Bulkeley in UA.10.3.35.

Return to Table of Contents »

Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Michigan State University. Class of 1899.
  • Michigan State University.

Personal Name(s)

  • Howell, David


  • College campuses
  • College students
  • Tourism -- United States

Return to Table of Contents »

Collection Inventory

Drawer Folder

Transcripts of Letters 1897-1898 

F.D. 1

"The US Travels of Joseph Arthur Bulkeley, 1897-1899" by David Howell undated 

F.D. 2