Miller, Mary Martha (1897-1963)

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Mary Martha Miller, professor of English at Hesston College, 1926-1958, was born 21 September 1897 in Champaign County, Ohio, in 1897. She moved frequently with her parents as they pioneered in Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas. She graduated from Hesston College (BA, 1926) and the University of Kansas (MA, 1928). Mary Miller was a teacher who lit the "lights" for hundreds of students—beginning in the elementary grades in both rural and city systems. At Hesston College in addition to classroom teaching of literature and composition, Mary served as dean of women.

She motivated students to write because she herself was a writer. For a period of 30 years, Mary wrote articles and short stories for various church periodicals. She helped to write the first Mennonite summer Bible school materials. As a Sunday school teacher, she was in demand. A scholar and lover of the Scriptures, she made the Bible applicable to contemporary living. For a number of years she wrote a biblical drama to be given during the Christmas season. These were published in the Builder, 1956-1959. From 1945 to 1947 she served in France under Mennonite Central Committee. She wrote A Pillar of Cloud (North Newton: Mennonite Press, 1959, the story of Hesston College). Hesston College's Mary Miller Library, named in her honor, was dedicated in 1965. She died 21 September 1963.


"Miller, Mary M." Gospel Herald 56 (8 October 1963). Reproduced in MennObits. "Gospel Herald Obituary - October 1963." Accessed 6 April 2006. <>

Springer, Nelson and A.J. Klassen, compilers, Mennonite Bibliography, 1631-1961, 2 vols. Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1977: II, 482.

Rich, Elaine Sommers. Mennonite Women: A Story of God's Faithfulness, 1683-1983. Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1983: 123.

Author(s) Melva Kauffman
Date Published 1987

Cite This Article

MLA style

Kauffman, Melva. "Miller, Mary Martha (1897-1963)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1987. Web. 21 Nov 2019.,_Mary_Martha_(1897-1963)&oldid=160408.

APA style

Kauffman, Melva. (1987). Miller, Mary Martha (1897-1963). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 November 2019, from,_Mary_Martha_(1897-1963)&oldid=160408.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 5, p. 588. All rights reserved.

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