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A.L Musson Papers

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Collection Summary


UA 53.8


A. L. Musson Papers


A.L. (Alfred Lyman) Musson




0.42 linear feet (1 document case) photographs




South Dakota State University Archives and Special Collections, Hilton M. Briggs Library, Brookings, South Dakota.

Access note

This collection is open to researchers without restrictions. The materials in the Archives do not circulate and may be used in-house only.

Preferred Citation

Name of item . A.L. Musson Papers. UA 53.8. South Dakota State University Archives and Special Collections, Hilton M .Briggs Library, Brookings, South Dakota.


A.L. Musson was a professor and head of the animal science department. This collection consists primarily of items collected by Musson on a trip to Somalia and East Africa in 1954. Also includes correspondence and research resulting from the trip.

Biographical Note

Alfred Lyman Musson was born on August 31, 1911 at Honolulu, Hawaii to Alfred and Mildred Musson. In 1933, he received his bachelor's degree from Connecticut State College at Storrs. In 1934, Alfred earned a master's degree and in 1951 a doctorate degree both from Iowa State University at Ames. Alfred married Helen Saunders on November 28, 1935 at South Norwalk, Connecticut. They had three children; Alfred L., Jr., Esther, and Merrill and five grandsons. Helen Saunders Musson died in November 1987. He married Hannah Sharp at Brookings on February 18, 1989.

The Musson's were house parents at Greer School at Hope Farm in New York from 1938 to 1941. Alfred was called to active duty from the U.S. Army Reserve from 1931 to 1945 where he served in the 271st Infantry, 69th Infantry division of the United States Army. He was a veteran of World War II and retired from the service as a lieutenant colonel. He was employed with Iowa State University for six years, and later at the Hope Farm School for Dependent Children for three years. He joined the South Dakota State College faculty in October 1952 as professor and head of the Animal Science Department. From 1960 until his retirement in 1973, he served in the office of the Dean of Agriculture and Biological Sciences under various titles, and retired as associate director of the South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station in June 1973. After his retirement, Musson pursued genealogy. He wrote a family history of his great-grandmother, which was published privately in 1986, and from 1980 until 1982, he published a family genealogy newsletter. He was a member of the Brookings Area Genealogy Society, the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society and the Marblehead (Mass.) Historical Society. He was also involved with the Mystic Seaport, Inc., the 69th Infantry Division Association, the American Society of Animal Science, Gamma Sigma Delta, Sigma Xi, and St. Paul's Episcopal Church. He was a former Rotarian and Scoutmaster at Ames, Iowa.

Alfred died on Saturday, July 21, 1990 at Sioux Valley Hospital in Sioux Falls. Interment was made at the Westwood Cemetery in Westwood, NJ.

Contents Note

This collection is composed of materials from a trip made by Musson to Somalia, East Africa in 1954. Included are scrapbooks, photographs, negatives, slides, notes, correspondence, some publications and articles about Somalia, maps, and trip preparation items.

The scrapbooks consist of pictures taken while in Somalia. Included are Musson's translations of the Italian descriptions that are written on the back of most of the pictures. The photographs, negatives and slides consist of more pictures of Somalia but do not include any description of each image.

The notes consist of writings made by Musson while in Somalia. The correspondence consists mainly of communications with the Foreign Operations Administration in preparation for Musson's trip. The publications and articles include items about Somalia that Musson probably read in preparation for his trip. The trip preparations include information about customs in Somalia, immunizations for travel abroad, and some paper work that includes an investigation form for security clearance that details some biographical information about Musson. Also included are a few maps of Somalia that show some of the places that Musson visited.

Key Words

Agricultural assistance, American -- Somalia

Musson. A. L. (Alfred Lyman), 1911-1990


Container List

View container list on Open Prairie

A.L. Musson Papers Container List. UA 53.8

11Articles1962, undated
13Correspondence1954-1962, undated
18Proposed program for agricultural technical assistance for Somalia by Musson and Worzella1954
19Recommendations for the development of an agricultural research and educational program in the Somalia Republic By John T. Stone1962
110Reconnaissance ground water survey of Somalia, East Africa by Thomas P. Ahrens1951
111Reports1950-1954, undated
112Scrapbook I1954
113Scrapbook II1954
114Slides and negatives1954
115Trip preparation1954

Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers without restrictions. The materials in the Archives do not circulate and may be used in-house only.

Researchers conducting extensive research are asked to make an advance appointment to access archival material. Please call or e-mail prior to visiting the collection and indicate as much detail as possible about a particular topic and intended use.

South Dakota State University supports access to the materials, published and unpublished, in its collections. Nonetheless, access to some items may be restricted as a result of their fragile condition or by contractual agreements with donors.

Copyright note

Copyright restrictions apply in different ways to different materials. Many of the documents and other historical materials in the Archives are in the public domain and may be reproduced and used in any way. There are other materials in the Archive carrying a copyright interest and must be used according to the provisions of Title 17 of the U.S. Code. The Archive issues a warning concerning copyright restrictions to every researcher who requests copies of documents. Although the copyright law is under constant redefinition in the courts, it is ultimately the responsibility of the researcher to properly use copyrighted material.

Arranged and Described by

Crystal J. Gamradt, Archivist, 1998 August 31.