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H. Cecil Wolsey collection

Identifier: 00111

Scope and Contents

Much of the collection consists of Wolsey's copies of booklets, brochures, catalogs, and manuals concerning combines, corn pickers, and other machinery and parts made by and for the Oliver Corporation. Additional items included in the collection are production charts (1960-1962), speed charts for various machines, correspondence regarding a damage suit against the company (1967), and books on machinery and engineering principles.


  • 1939 - 1967

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

H. Cecil Wolsey (the husband of the collection's donor) was employed at the Battle Creek Oliver Corporation plant until it closed in 1963, at which time he became the chief engineer at the Shelbyville, Indiana plant.

The Oliver Corporation is a merger and an expansion of a number of nineteenth century manufacturers of farm machinery, one of them being the Nichols and Shepard Company of Battle Creek, Michigan. Other companies which were merged at the same time (April 2, 1929) were Oliver Chilled Plow, Hart-Parr Tractor Company, and the American Seed Company. This merger resulted in The Oliver Farm Equipment Company. In 1943 the Ann Arbor Baling Company was incorporated and the organization then became the Oliver Corporation. In 1951 the A.B. Farquhar Company, a spraying and dusting company, was also added.


2.4 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials



The collection has been divided into series consisting of Sales and Service Material, Miscellaneous Office Material, Volumes and Oversized Materials.

SALES AND SERVICE MATERIAL. 1939-1968. This series contains various booklets, catalogs, and brochures relating to the sales of the Oliver Corporation's machinery and machine accessories. Also included are several manuals relating to the service and maintenance of Oliver Corporation equipment and product improvement.

MISCELLANEOUS OFFICE MATERIAL. 1945-1967. This series contains material produced by and relating to Cecil Wolsey's employment as an engineer for the Oliver Corporation. Included are speed charts, line drawings, correspondence, and various published reference books.

VOLUMES. 16 volumes that include handbooks, manuals, stock lists and other publications.

OVERSIZED MATERIALS. Drawings, charts, and newspapers.

Custodial History

Gift of Mrs. Frieda M. Wolsey, 1974-07-23.

Related Archival Materials

See also Oliver Corporation collection, 00094, at UAHC.

See also Nichols & Shepard Company records, call number: 85711 Bb.2 2; BB.2 Outsize, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Legal Status

Copyright: Michigan State University Property Rights: Michigan State University

Processing Information

This collection was originally titled "Oliver Corporation Records". Subsequent processing retitled the collection under the collector's name, H. Cecil Wolsey. Folders have not been relabeled and still bear the original collection name.

H. Cecil Wolsey Collection
4 Published And Cataloged
T. Luitje
August 2002
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