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Hawkins family papers

Identifier: UA-10.3.421

Scope and Contents

The Hawkins family papers contain documents collected by four generations of the Hawkins family. The heads of these four generations are John R. Hawkins (1809-1882); son, Henry J. Hawkins (1843-1915); grandson, John R. Hawkins (1881-1957); and great grandson, John Henry Hawkins (1907-2005).

Most of the correspondence contained in the collection consists of letters (1850-1864) received by John R. Hawkins and his wife, Hannah, from family members and friends, most of whom lived in Rochester, New York. The letters discuss illnesses, occupations, births, and deaths of family members, etc. The collection also contains letters (1848-1866) sent to John R. by George P. Hester of Oxford, England, which convey general news of family and friends, and discuss current events and economic conditions in England. Other letters in the correspondence originated from Chicago, Illinois, Chili Centre, New York, Los Angeles, California, and Brockport, New York.

The Hawkins family papers also include property deeds (1837-1944) and personal wills of John Hawkins of England and his wife, Hannah T. Hawkins. The first will, written in 1792, includes a detailed map showing the estate of "John Hawkins of Hardwick, in the county of Oxford," including a home, farm buildings, grounds, orchards, and a mill.

Other items in the collection include account books, a patent deed, receipts, insurance receipts, plat maps, and published materials on the Hawkins family. The patent deed (1862) was issued to John R. Hawkins and others who bought shares in the Alexander Anderson Company which manufactured cultivators.

The documents in the collection are a mixed of originals and photocopies.


  • Creation: 1792-1949, 1977, 1979


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

John R. Hawkins came to America in 1828 from Hardwick, Oxford County, England and settled in Michigan. In the 1830s, John R. Hawkins purchased 160 acres of land in Rollin Township, Lenawee Township, Michigan, from his wife's parents, Henry and Elizabeth Hayward, and this land has remained in the family since that time. Sixty acres of the original land was part of a 450-acre farm owned by his great grandson, John Henry Hawkins. The property was designated a Centennial Farm by the Michigan Historical Commission.

John Henry Hawkins graduated from Michigan Agricultural College (now Michigan State University) in 1929 with a B.A. in Forestry.


0.5 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials


Custodial History

Gift of John Henry Hawkins, 1987-08-21.

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

Changed record group from 00165 to UA 10.3.421 to reflect John Henry Hawkins' connection to Michigan State University. M. Badgley Malone, January 2020.

Hawkins Family Papers
4 Published And Cataloged
S. Bjork
September 1988
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