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Record Group 13 - College of Agriculture & Life Sciences

Agricultural training was one of the primary missions of the College from its beginnings. In the 1872 Catalog, Agriculture is listed as one of 13 courses of study. It consisted of lectures on: the selection, breeding, food, shelter, use, nature, and management of farm animals; dairy farming; soils; plants; landscape gardening; floriculture; farm economics; and building materials. Agriculture was one of the first four major administrative divisions created when Deans were appointed to the academic departments. In 1907-08, there was a School of Scientific Agriculture and a School of Agricultural Apprentices, but both were subordinate to the Department of Agriculture that had its own Dean. In 1920-21, the title was changed to School of Agriculture; then in 1964, it became the College of Agriculture. The name was changed to the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences in 1971.

Finding aid for College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) Collection, Ms2013-010

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Newspaper Clippings and Printed Material

Mounted clippings concerning Agriculture from 1906-47 are located under classification "MA." From 1948-59, the mounted clippings are divided into the different Agriculture departments, with each department having a separate classification. The classifications are: Agronomy - MAAG; Animal Husbandry - MAAN; Animal Pathology - MAB.AP; Forestry - MAB.F; Biochemistry and Nutrition - MABio; Dairy - MAD; Agricultural Economics - MAHm; Horticulture - MAHr; Horticulture Garden Short Course - MAHrG; Institute of Rural Affairs - MAIn; Agriculture-Misc. - MAM; Poultry - MAP; Vocational Education - MAV; Plant Pathology and Plant Physiology - MAPP.

Department of Agricultural Economics

(RG 13/3)
Courses in Agricultural Economics began in 1921. In 1924, the Department of Agricultural Economics was established. From 1929-33, the department was called Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology, then it went back to just Agricultural Economics from 1933-40. From 1946-48, it was the Department of Agricultural Economics, Rural Sociology, and Statistics; then from 1948-65, it was Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology again. Since 1965, it has simply been the Department of Agricultural Economics.

Newspaper Clippings, 1948-Present

While the University Archives does not contain any official records of this department, it does maintain newspaper clippings and publications. Mounted clippings, 1948-59, are classified under "MAEC." Prior to 1948, all clippings dealing with Agriculture in general are classified under "Ma." Vertical files of newspaper clippings and publications, 1960 to present, are maintained under the record group number.

Department of Agricultural Engineering

(RG 13/4)
Courses in agricultural engineering were offered as early as 1912. In 1919, it became a department and the first Bachelors Degree in Agricultural Engineering was offered in 1921.

Records, 1920-50

18.8 cu. ft.
The papers in this collection give information on the development of the Agricultural Engineering Department. Included in the collection is correspondence (1920-31, 1935-39) of Charles Edward Seitz (Faculty member, 1920-55, and Department Head, 1937-42), J.A. Walls, and other faculty members. Other material includes: Farm Improvement Committee records (1921-25); Pyrotol records (1924-28), which includes agreements, correspondence, questionnaires, testimonials, and progress reports on this war surplus explosive distributed to Virginia for agricultural purposes; Irrigation material (1927-33); student records (1930-50); a random sampling of class tickets, grade sheets, course changes, transfers, and letters; American Society of Agricultural Engineers material (1931-33) consisting primarily of papers related to Seitz's year as president of the organization, including correspondence, reports, and minutes; Terracing (soil conservation) records (1934-35); Virginia Agricultural Engineer records (1936-37), including information about this student publication, requests and replies to prospective advertisers, etc.; and Engineering Program Tobacco Research at Oxford, North Carolina, records (1950s), including project reports, equipment records, photographs, coal research information, Battelle Memorial Institute reports (1946-47). Also included in this collection are the records of a Farm Housing Survey done in 1934 by the department in cooperation with the Bureau of Home Economics and Agricultural Engineering of the United States Department of Agriculture as a part of a national farm housing Civil Works Project. The survey includes ten Virginia counties.

Another significant part of the collection is the correspondence of Earl Thomas Swink (1935-40). Swink was a faculty member from 1935-70 and a rural electrification specialist. Most of this material deals with the subject of rural electrification, including exchanges between Swink and county agents, home demonstration agents, and county residents.

In addition to the material in Swink's files, there are numerous other files located in this collection dealing with rural electrification in Virginia. These files show the beginnings of the program, projects undertaken, progress of the program, and the relationships between the Agricultural Engineering Department, the state, and U.S. agencies concerned with rural electrification.

  • Research and Investigational Activities in Agricultural Engineering at Virginia Polytechnic Institute (LD 5655 A3 B8 V34 no. 3 Dec. 1940)
Newspaper Clippings and Printed Material

Mounted clippings, 1948-59, are located under classification "MAEN." Mounted clippings under the classification "MA" cover all areas of agriculture from 1906-47. Newspaper clippings and printed material, such as brochures and circulars, from 1960-present are maintained under the record group number.

Department of Animal Science

(RG 13/6)
Courses pertaining to animal science were first offered in 1872. The first bachelor degree in animal science was given in 1921. From 1908-63 the department was known as Animal Husbandry. Since 1963, it has been the Department of Animal Science.

Records, 1952-59

1.6 cu. ft.
This collection contains a significant amount of budget material (1952-60). Also included here are schedules of inspection for Animal Husbandry research projects, research reports, McCormick Farm report, project outlines, inventories of livestock and machinery, Dr. Kirkham's handwritten notes on Biochemistry, and a report of the Animal Industries Committee.

Newspaper Clippings and Printed Material

Mounted clippings, 1948-59, are located under the classification "MAAN." Mounted clippings under "MA" cover all areas of agriculture from 1906-47. Newspaper clippings and printed material, such as brochures and circulars, from 1960 to present are maintained under the record group number.

Department of Agronomy

(RG 13/5)
Agronomy courses have been given since 1872. The Department of Agronomy was established in 1907 and the first Bachelor degree in Agronomy was awarded in 1921.

Newspaper Clippings and Printed Material

While the University Archives does not contain the official records of the Department of Agronomy, a collection of newspaper clippings and printed material is maintained. Mounted clippings, 1948-59, are located under classification "MAAG." Mounted clippings under classification "MA" cover all areas of agriculture from 1906-47. Newspaper clippings and printed material from 1960 to present are filed under the record group number.

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