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Lillian Dale Avery Stuttle.

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Stuttle, Lillian Dale (Avery) (1855–1933)

By Michael W. Campbell

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Michael W. Campbell, Ph.D., is North American Division Archives, Statistics, and Research director. Previously, he was professor of church history and systematic theology at Southwestern Adventist University. An ordained minister, he pastored in Colorado and Kansas. He is assistant editor of The Ellen G. White Encyclopedia (Review and Herald, 2013) and currently is co-editor of the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Seventh-day Adventism. He also taught at the Adventist International Institute for Advanced Studies (2013-18) and recently wrote the Pocket Dictionary for Understanding Adventism (Pacific Press, 2020).

First Published: October 2, 2023

Lillian Dale (Avery) Stuttle was an editor, poet, hymn writer, and author of Adventist conduct literature.

Lilly (or Lilla or Lillian) was born July 12, 1855, in Locke, Michigan, to Jonas (1821-1905) and Marcia (1829-1910) Avery. When she was a young girl, her parents became Adventist, which she later recalled effectively meant she grew up in an Adventist home. She specifically attributed her love for the Lord to the deep spirituality of her mother while growing up at home.

Lilly later married Charles Stuttle (1842-1933) who became an Adventist about 1861 through the preaching of J. O. Corliss (1845-1923). Charles was briefly married (c. 1860) to Harriet A. Wickman (1840-1861) but she died soon after childbirth,1 and their only child, Hattie (1861-1862) died a few months later.2 During this terrible crisis, he learned of the Adventist message and began to observe the seventh-day Sabbath. On his first Sabbath he met Lilly although it would not be until September 14, 1877, that the two would wed. During the 1870s Lilly was one of the early students at Battle Creek College. While there, she “endeared herself to all by her kindly deeds and sunny disposition.”3

Lillian wrote hundreds of poems, making her one of the most published Adventist poets.4 Her earliest published poem appeared in 1891 as an adaptation of Psalm 121:8 and John 13:7.5 Her poetry reflected her Adventist convictions. Her book of poems, Satan’s First Lie, or Man in Death, presented “in the form of a poem an argument against the doctrine of the natural immortality of the soul and in favor of eternal life through Christ.”6 Similarly, she wrote about the preparatory work during the investigative judgment just prior to Christ’s return.7 Among several collections of her poetry are two entitled, Gleanings and Shiloh. Her poems were featured in classic works such as S. N. Haskell’s The Cross and Its Shadow, and even more recently, at the funeral of Del Delker, noted Adventist vocalist.8 Some of her poems were transposed into songs in various Adventist hymnals.9 Here she wrote the hymn, “O Master, Let Me Walk with Thee,” (SDAH #574) set to the tune, Morton, composed by Edwin Barnes (1864-1930),10 a music teacher, and named in honor of Eliza H. Morton, who was also a teacher at Battle Creek College in 1881.11 Another popular hymn was “Walking with God.”12 Her favorite hymn was “O, Let Me Walk with Thee, My God.”13

Lilly wrote some of the most substantial early household manuals or conduct literature within Adventism, ironically from a woman who never had any children. Her first and most famous work was Making Home Happy that was first published in 1898 with numerous subsequent printings. This was followed by Making Home Peaceful (Review and Herald, 1899), and Making Home Beautiful (Southern Publishing, 1910). She partnered with J. Edson White in writing against the dangers of alcohol in The Man that Rum Made, showing a strong connection with the Temperance Movement. This book went through numerous printings. She also wrote a series of resources for children’s Sabbath School classes, notably Selections for Our Little Folks.

About 1915 the Stuttles retired to San Diego, California, near the Paradise Valley Sanitarium. Lilly died on March 17, 1933, and is buried in the Glen Abbey Memorial Cemetery in San Diego.14 Her husband passed away about five months later and was buried next to her.15

Sources

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “After Forty Years.” ARH, September 4, 1919.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “At Last.” ARH, July 27, 1897, 470.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Bend Low Before the Blast.” ARH, December 15, 1896.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Chastened.” ARH, August 31, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Commission to the Twelve.” The Home Missionary, August 1896.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “The Dying Year.” ARH, December 28, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “The Encampment of the Angels.” ARH, December 21, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Elsie’s Sacrifice: A Thanksgiving Story.” American Sentinel, November 18, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Faith.” ARH, October 16, 1894.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “From Strength to Strength.” ARH, November 20, 1894; Signs of the Times, November 26, 1894.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Gleanings. Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald, ca. 1922.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Grandma Gray’s Lesson.” ARH, October 19, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “The Hand that Guides.” ARH, June 1, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Harold’s Dream.” American Sentinel, December 2, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Isaiah 48:18.” ARH, June 15, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Jesus Knows.” Signs of the Times, December 24, 1894.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Life.” Youth’s Instructor, December 26, 1895.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Making Home Beautiful. Nashville, TN: Southern Missionary Society, ca. 1910s.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Making Home Happy. Battle Creek, MI: Review and Herald, 1898, 1899. 1876??

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Making Home Peaceful. Battle Creek, MI: Review and Herald, 1899.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Memorial Stones.” ARH, November 9, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “My Country.” ARH, September 18, 1894.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “My Prayer.” ARH, September 29, 1896.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “The New-Earth State.” ARH, September 7, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Only Wait.” Signs of the Times, February 19, 1894.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Poems of the Christ Life: Arranged in a Series of Recitations for Use in Sabbath School Entertainments. Lansing, MI: Beacon Publishing Co., 1893.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Proverbs 16:32.” ARH, October 26, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, I. D. “Psalms 121:8; John 13:7.” ARH, October 27, 1891.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Regret.” ARH, August 24, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Rest.” ARH, March 13, 1894.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Satan’s First Lie; or, Man in Death. Bible Students Library, no. 199. Mountain View, CA: Pacific Press, [1891].

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Shiloh, the Man of Nazareth. Mountain View, CA: Pacific Press, 1950.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Shiloh: The Man of Sorrows. Boston: Richard G. Badger, 1914.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Six Little Sparrows, or Mrs. Matthew’s Thanksgiving.” ARH, November 23, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “The Smell of Fire.” ARH, June 8, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Snow Men.” Youth’s Instructor, January 3, 1895.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Sunset.” ARH, June 22, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Thine Forever.” ARH, August 10, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. Those Bible Readings. Mountain View, CA: Pacific Press, ca. 1907.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Transformed.” ARH, November 30, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Uncle Will’s Story.” American Sentinel, December 9, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “Weighed in the Balance.” Signs of the Times, December 9, 1897.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D. “What Makes Me Glad.” The Present Truth, January 16, 1896.

Avery-Stuttle, L. D., Mina Mann, and Ella M. Robinson. Selections for Our Little Folks. Mountain View, CA: Pacific Press, c. 1909.

Covington, Ava Marie. They Also Served: Stories of Pioneer Women of the Advent Movement. Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1940.

Lacey, H. Camden. “Poetry in the Preaching Service.” Ministry, July 1932.

“Lillian Dale Avery-Stuttle obituary.” ARH, May 18, 1933.

“Lillian Dale Avery-Stuttle obituary.” San Diego Evening Tribune, March 18, 1933.

“Religious Writer Passes at Home.” San Diego Evening Tribune, March 17, 1933.

White, J. Edson and L. D. Avery-Stuttle. The Man That Rum Made with Temperance Lessons and Stories. Marshall, MI: Nashville Book Company, 1912.

White, J. Edson and L. D. Avery-Stuttle. The Gospel Primer, no. 2. Nashville, TN: Southern Publishing, c. 1910.

Notes

  1. “Harriet A. Wickham Stottle [Stuttle],” Find a Grave, 2023, accessed August 3, 2023, https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/47724598/harriet-a-stottle.

  2. “Hattie Wickham,” Find a Grave, 2023, accessed July 15, 2023, https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/96100386/hattie-wickham.

  3. “Lillian Dale Avery-Stuttle obituary,” ARH, May 18, 1933, 22.

  4. See list of ten influential Adventist poets: Idamae Melendy, “Your Denominational IQ,” ARH, August 25, 1960, 15.

  5. Mrs. I. D. Avery-Stuttle, “Psalms 121:8; John 13:7,” ARH, October 27, 1891, 659.

  6. See publication announcement, “Literary Notices,” Good Health, October 1893, 320; “Literary Notices,” Signs of the Times, August 14, 1893, 637.

  7. L. D. Avery-Stuttle, “Weighed in the Balance,” Signs of the Times, December 9, 1897, 6.

  8. See E. Lonnie Melashenko, “A Tribute to Del Delker,” March 24, 2018, accessed July 15, 2023, https://www.voiceofprophecy.com/sites/default/files/del_delker_homily.pdf. For more information on Del Delker, see “Delker, Ardella Vernell "Del" (1924–2018),” ESDA, accessed August 3, 2023, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=AG0G&highlight=Delker.

  9. A. W. Spalding, Origin and History of Seventh-day Adventists (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald, 1962), 2:137; “L. D. Avery-Stuttle,” Hymnary.org, accessed July 15, 2023, https://hymnary.org/person/AveryStuttle_LD.

  10. See “Barnes, Edwin E. (1864-1930),” ESDA, accessed August 3, 2023, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=8G8A&highlight=barnes.

  11. Wayne Hooper and Edward E. White, Companion to the Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal (Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald, 1988).

  12. “O Let Me Walk with Thee My God,” Hymnary. org, accessed July 15, 2023, https://hymnary.org/search?qu=in%3Ainstances%20textAuthNumber%3A%22%5Eo_let_me_walk_with_thee_my_god%24%22&sort=hymnalTitle.

  13. Ava Marie Covington, They Also Served: Stories of Pioneer Women of the Advent Movement (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1940), 34.

  14. “Lilla Dale Avery Stottle Stuttle,” Find a Grave, 2023, accessed July 15, 2023, https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/45709734/lilla-dale-stuttle.

  15. “Charles Newton Stottle Stuttle,” Find a Grave, 2023, accessed July 15, 2023, https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/45709681/charles-newton-stottle_stuttle.

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Campbell, Michael W. "Stuttle, Lillian Dale (Avery) (1855–1933)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. October 02, 2023. Accessed June 18, 2024. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=6IRZ.

Campbell, Michael W. "Stuttle, Lillian Dale (Avery) (1855–1933)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. October 02, 2023. Date of access June 18, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=6IRZ.

Campbell, Michael W. (2023, October 02). Stuttle, Lillian Dale (Avery) (1855–1933). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved June 18, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=6IRZ.