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Dora Hall Stockman papers

 Record Group
Identifier: UA-1.1.11

Scope and Contents

Dora Hall Stockman was an East Lansing, Michigan resident and was actively involved in local affairs. The collection contains a typed transcript of her autobiography, correspondence, publications, and newspaper clippings of the various activities in which she participated.

Stockman's primary interest was in the State Grange. As an active member she helped establish county Granges throughout the state and held several state offices including that of State Grange Lecturer (1914-1930). Included in the papers are State Grange rosters, publications, handbooks, publications of the Ingham County Grange, issues of the Michigan Patron, the major publication of the State Grange with articles written by Stockman, and some National Grange information.

In the 1930s, Stockman began to work on her doctoral degree in sociology at Michigan State College (now Michigan State University). While unfinished, portions of the thesis, entitled "The Grand and Rural Life in America" are included in addition to portions which appeared in the Michigan Patron. Stockman was the first woman to receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Michigan State College on June 11, 1934. Other materials from MSC include commencement programs,Farmers' Week publications, and several issues of the Michigan State News.

Stockman was also involved in many other writing activities. Included are articles, pageants, speeches, songs, poems, a manuscript entitled "Happy Valley" and two books, Dialogues and Farmerkins Farm Rhymes. Also included are transcripts of radio broadcasts which Stockman gave at WKAR at MSC.

In 1938, Stockman was elected to the state legislature from the second district of Ingham County, a seat she held until she retired from politics in 1946. Correspondence, materials of legislative action, and newspaper clippings are included pertaining to her terms in office.

There are also materials pertaining to her farm west of Lansing, a memorial scrapbook presented to her by the Ingham County Grange, and numerous photographs.


  • Creation: 1910 - 1948


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

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

Biographical Note

Dora Hall Stockman was born on a farm in 1872 in Manistee County, Michigan. She became a teacher at age 16. She went on to attend Benzonia College and to earn a master’s degree in education from Hillsdale College. She owned a mercantile business with her husband, Francis, and later bought a farm on Lansing’s west side.

Stockman was elected in 1919 to the State Board of Agriculture, now the Board of Trustees of Michigan State University. With this election, she became the first woman elected to a statewide office in Michigan, and the first woman in the United States to serve on the board of a land grant college. In this position until 1932, she championed the expansion of the curriculum to include the liberal arts, while urging more emphasis on higher education of women at Michigan State and elsewhere. In 1934, Michigan State recognized Stockman’s contributions to the Board, education and agriculture by awarding her an Honorary Doctorate of Laws. She was the first woman to receive this honor from Michigan State.

She was was elected to the state legislature from the second district of Ingham County, a seat she held until she retired from politics in 1946. She died in 1948.



3 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials


Related Archival Materials

Other Grange materials at the MSU Archives include Michigan State Grange records (collection 00187); Missaukee Grange #918 records (collection 00106); Ravenna Grange #373 records, Muskegon County (collection c.00153); The Grange Visitor publication (collection c.00520).

Legal Status

Donor(s) have transferred any applicable copyright to Michigan State University but the collection may contain third-party materials for which copyright was not transferred. Copyright restrictions may apply. Property Rights: Michigan State University.

Processing Information

The identifier for the collection was changed from 00109 to UA 1.1.11 to reflect Stockman's connection to MSU.

M. Badgley Malone, October 2019

Dora Hall Stockman Papers
4 Published And Cataloged
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives and Historical Collections Repository

Conrad Hall
943 Conrad Road, Room 101
East Lansing MI 48824 US