Educated as a school teacher, Pulpe moved to France in 1912. Pursuing an interest in aviation, he obtained a civilian Pilot's Brevet on 19 December 1913. At the age of 34, he enlisted in the French Air Service at the beginning of the war. Assigned to MS23 on 1 May 1915, he scored his first two victories after his Escadrille was re-equipped with the Nieuport 11. Pulpe later served with the 10th Fighter Detachment of Imperial Russian Air Service, becoming an ace on 1 July 1916. A month later, he was fatally wounded in aerial combat with Erwin Böhme.