Melissa Martin Dawes

Melissa Martin Dawes (June 16, 1890 - July 7, 1977)

Melissa Margaret Martin was born in 1890 in Michigan City, North Dakota. She and her family moved to Corvallis in 1913. Martin received her B.A. from the University of Oregon in 1912, and her B.S. in Home Economics from Oregon Agricultural College in 1915. She then went on to a master’s degree, which she earned from Columbia University. She continued to study throughout her life, at universities both within the U.S. and in France, Germany, Spain, Brazil and Mexico.

In 1915, Martin became a languages instructor at Oregon Agricultural College, where she would continue to work for the majority of her career, teaching Spanish, French, German and Portuguese at various pionts. In 1933 she became the chair of the school's Department of Modern Languages, a position she would continue to hold until her retirement from OSC 1960. She married C. Marshall Dawes in 1953 and passed away in 1977. The Dawes House at Oregon State University is named after her.