Raymond Rush Brewer (1889-1963)

Raymond Rush Brewer

Raymond Brewer was born on November 23, 1889 to Irvin and Mary Jane Winger Brewer in Sylvan, Pennsylvania. He attended the Dickinson Preparatory School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania before joining the full undergraduate class of 1916. At Dickinson, Brewer studied the Classical course, and was a member of Theta Chi, Union Philosophical Society, the Y.M.C.A., and Phi Beta Kappa. After graduation, he briefly attended Drew Theological Seminary, but the outbreak of the First World War interrupted his studies, and he withdrew to serve as a chaplain in the war. Eventually, Brewer received his bachelor of sacred theology from Boston University in 1921.

Brewer wrote to Dickinson College prior to his graduation from Boston University, inquiring about any missionary opportunities of which the College might know. In response, the college used funds partially collected by the Y.M.C.A. to support Brewer as its newest missionary representative to China. In September 1921, Brewer sailed to China to replace Professor Yost at the West China Union University as Dickinson’s representative for the Dickinson - In - China program. For the next several years, Brewer struggled to raise awareness of the problems in China, to encourage American donations to the program, and to educate Chinese students about the United States and Christianity. Increasing hostility to Western nations, their citizens and their ideas, combined with the increasing strength of communists within China led to the closing of the West China Union University on November 11, 1926. Brewer was one of many foreigners who left China. The Dickinson-In-China program officially ended in 1927.

After his time in China, Brewer returned to the United States. He earned his master’s degree and doctorate from the University of Chicago in 1930. For a time, he was professor of religion at the College of the Ozarks in Arkansas. In 1943, he became a professor at Millikin University, and later served as director of admissions, registrar, and public relations director. For sixteen years he was the pastor of the Sharon Methodist Church. Raymond Rush Brewer died on November 29, 1963 in St. Louis, Missouri.

Author of Post: 
Dickinson College Archives
Date of Post: 
College Relationship: 
Alumnus/Alumna Class Year: