Mary Buckley Taintor

Photo from 1934 Dickinson College Microcosm
    Mary Buckley Taintor was born on July 25, 1889 in Rochester, Minnesota. She graduated from Ripon College in 1911 and received a degree from Leland Stanford Jr. University in 1918. She was also a student at the American Classical School in Rome, Italy from 1911-1912 and a student at the University of Grenoble, France. Taintor did graduate work at both the University of Chicago(1919) and Columbia University(1926-1928).
    Before teaching at Dickinson College, Taintor taught at Milwaukee State Normal School as a teacher of Latin and French from 1912-1917. She was also a teacher of Latin and French at the Venice High School in California in 1918. Taintor became a full Professor of French at Ripon College from 1919-1928. Finally in 1928, Taintor joined the Dickinson faculty as an Associate Professor of Romance Languages in 1928. In 1951 she received the title of Professor of Romance Languages and was the third women to obtain the rank of full professor at Dickinson College. She later retired in 1959 as Professor Emerita of Romance Languages.  At the announcement of her retirement, the faculty of time created a resolution:
                    The Faculty, speaking for students and alumni as well as itself, is grateful to
                    Professor Mary Taintor for her long service to learning at Dickinson College
                    and elsewhere. It regrets that it is losing her devotion to large, objective academic
                    and democratic principles, her courage, magnanimity, friendliness, with and modesty
                    which made it impossible for students or Faculty to publicly honor her this spring.
                    Our best wishes follow her wherever she may go1 .
    Many of her former students remember Taintor, as "gentle, lady-like in her graciousness."2 . At times she "may not have appeared organized but was completely in control."3
    After retiring from Dickinson College, Taintor became involved with Ripon College by setting up a Library Fund from the class of 1911 to perpetuate higher education and to provide a lasting standard of excellence for Ripon College.
    Outside of Dickinson College, Taintor was a member of the First Congrgational Church in Ripon, Minnesota. She was also a member of the Ripon Educational Club, the Ripon branch of the American Association of University Women and a life member of the Ripon Historical Society. Mary Taintor died on February 5, 1981. At the announcement of her death, Samuel A. Banks, President of Dickinson College, said Taintor "was a pioneer in every sense of the word"4 .


    1.Faculty Minutes from June 7, 1959.
    2.A letter from David Flaherty to Henry Young, February 16, 1981.
    4.A letter to the Dickinson Community from Presiden Samuel A. Banks, announcing Taintor's death, February 5, 1981.
    A letter to the Dickinson Community from Presiden Samuel A. Banks, announcing Taintor's death, February 5, 1981, Dickinson College Archives.
    Dickinsonian, May 17, 1928, Dickinson College Archives.
    Dickinson College, Microcosm, 1934, p. 37, Dickinson College Archives.
    Faculty Minutes from June 7, 1959, Dickinson College Archives.
    "Taintor, Mary Buckley" Dropfile, Dickinson College Archives.
    A letter from David Flaherty to Henry Young, February 16, 1981, Dickinson Special Collections.

    Return to Mary Buckley Taintor

-Cynthia L. Mackey '03
Class of 1934     Chronicles

Dickinson College

Dickinson 1934 is a project of Prof. Osborne's History 204 Class, Fall Semester 2000.