Mellinger, Lydia Stauffer Sauder (1878-1952)

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Lydia Stauffer Sauder Mellinger, b. 30 April 1878, served the Mennonite Church (MC) full-time for more than half a century. During 29 years as matron of the Millersville, PA Mennonite Children's Home she became "Mama Sauder" to 800 and to her church and community as well. Born in Farmersville, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Samuel and Maria Stauffer, she moved to the Welsh Mountain Industrial Mission in 1899 to work among impoverished blacks. In 1906 she married coworker Levi Sauder and became second mother to his son, J. Paul. The Sauders supervised the mission from the spring of 1910 until March 1911, when they opened the Children's Home. They had two sons, John L. and H. Richard. During Levi's ten-week illness and after his death (October 1940) Lydia managed the office. In December 1941 she married Jacob D. Mellinger and with him served for four years in a CPS camp near Hagerstown, Maryland. They left the camp one morning in February 1946 and before noon began work as steward and matron of the Mennonite Home near Lancaster, Pennsylvania where Lydia died on 27 June 1952.


Gospel Herald (29 July 1952): 758; (5 December 1940): 767; (8 January 1942): 870; (14 August 1979): 662.

Missionary Messenger (September 1947): 2, 3.

Mennonite Research Journal 2 (7 April 1961): 16.

Weaver, Martin G. Mennonites of Lancaster Conference. Scottdale: Mennonite Publishing House, 1931: 298-302, 334-336.

Author(s) A. Grace Wenger
Date Published 1987

Cite This Article

MLA style

Wenger, A. Grace. "Mellinger, Lydia Stauffer Sauder (1878-1952)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1987. Web. 16 Jul 2018.,_Lydia_Stauffer_Sauder_(1878-1952)&oldid=89605.

APA style

Wenger, A. Grace. (1987). Mellinger, Lydia Stauffer Sauder (1878-1952). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 16 July 2018, from,_Lydia_Stauffer_Sauder_(1878-1952)&oldid=89605.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 5, p. 553. All rights reserved.

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