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Digital Collections

Anna V. Blough, 1885-1922

The Church of the Brethren in China

The Church of the Brethren opened its first China missionary station in Pingding, Shanxi Province, in May 1910. One of the missionaries who later served there was Anna V. Blough. Born on November 22, 1885 near Waterloo, Iowa, Anna was baptized into the Church of the Brethren in 1891. She later attended Mt. Morris Academy (Illinois) in 1902 and again from 1904-1906. After further study at Bethany Bible School, Anna sailed for China in 1913, where she served as a missionary, primarily in Pingding. She died in China from typhus on May 9, 1922. The letters and diaries she wrote home provide a window into one woman's experience of the missionary endeavor, as she described the linguistic and cultural difficulties of adapting to life in China during the early decades of the twentieth century. Anna's writings provide a valuable primary source for researchers investigating the Western missionary experience in China. The Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies, along with the High Library, have transcribed and digitized the Anna V. Blough Missionary Letters and Diaries from China collection.