Miner was born at Oberlin, Ohio. Her father was a missionary to the Chippewa Indians and after Civil War service, a teacher in schools for the freedmen. After graduation from Oberlin College (1884), she taught for three years in American Missionary Association schools in the South, then was appointed to serve in China under the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions (ABCFM), with support from the ABCFM-related Woman’s Board of Missions of the Interior. She sailed in 1887, and after language study at Paotingfu, taught in North China College at Tungchow, near Peking, and published a geology textbook in Chinese.
During the reconstruction period following the Boxer disturbances of 1900, she turned to education for girls. She moved to Peking in 1903 to reorganize and for ten years head Bridgman Academy; in 1905, she also founded North China Women’s College, which later added “Union” to its name by virtue of Presbyterian, Methodist, and London Missionary Society participation. That institution became the Women’s College of Yenching University in 1920. Miner resigned as dean in 1922 and joined the faculty of Cheeloo University (Shantung Christian University), Tsinan, serving first as dean of women and then in the school of theology until 1932. She received the D.Litt. from Oberlin in 1914 and in 1928 was a delegate to the International Missionary conference in Jerusalem. She died in Jinan, China.
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.
- In 1903 Miner published two books about the Boxer episode which are notable for their focus on the experience of Chinese Christians rather than on missionary sufferings: China’s Book of Martyrs: A Record of Heroic Martyrdoms and Marvelous Deliverances of Chinese Christians during the Summer of 1900, and Two Heroes of Cathay, an Autobiography and a Sketch (a translation of Fei Chi Hao’s Autobiography, and a sketch of Kung Hsiang-hsi). Mary H. Porter, Luella Miner, A Sketch (1916); Missionary Herald 126 (1930): 393-394; 132 (1936): 92-93 (obit).