1878  — 1941

Alice Seymour Browne Frame

American Congregationalist missionary and dean of Women's College, Yenching University.

Browne was born in Turkey where her parents were missionaries with the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions (ABCFM). Graduating from Mount Holyoke College in 1900, she was inspired by the Boxer Rebellion to set her sights for China. Students and alumnae of the school sponsored her missionary service. In 1903 she graduated from Hartford Theological Seminary in religious pedagogy and in 1905 sailed to China to take charge of a congregationa1ist girls’ school. In 1913 she married ABCFM missionary evangelist Murray Scott Frame, but within five years she lost two children and had become widowed.

In 1918 she began to teach at the North China Union Women’s College in Peking and became dean in 1922 after it affiliated with Yenching University. In 1928 the college was merged with the university. In 1931, after resigning under pressure to make way for a Chinese dean, Frame became secretary of religious education of the North China Congregational Church and undertook itinerant evangelism and rural education. In 1938 she attended the Madras Conference of the International Missionary Council as a delegate of the China Christian council. Her service in China was cut short by cancer.


This article is reprinted from Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions, Macmillan Reference USA, copyright (c) 1998 Gerald H. Anderson, by permission of The Gale Group; Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, Michigan. All rights reserved.


  • Frame’s papers and letters are held in the archives of the UCBWM, Boston, and in the ABCFM archives at Harvard Univ., Cambridge, Mass. She corresponded from 1905 to 1940 with her supporters at Mount Holyoke College. Some letters are also held in the China Collection at Yale Divinity School, New Haven, Conn. Her obituary is in Missionary Herald, October 1941, pp. 47-48.

About the Author

Dana L. Robert

Professor of International Mission, Boston University School of Theology, Boston, Massachusetts, USA