Hall, Horace Alvin (1892–1969)

By Adlai Wilfred M. Tornalejo, and Remwil R. Tornalejo

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Adlai Wilfred M. Tornalejo is a theology instructor at South Philippine Adventist College, Digos Davao del Sur, Philippines. He finished his Bachelor of Theology from Mountain View College, Valencia, Bukidnon, Philippines in 2016. He earned an M.A. in religion in church history and theology from the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies in 2018.

Remwil R. Tornalejo is an associate professor in the Historical-Theological department of the International Institute of Advanced Studies Seminary (AIIAS). Tornalejo has a B.A. in theology from Mountain View College, Valencia, Philippines, and M.P.S., M.Div., and M.Th. degrees from AIIAS. He had served as a pastor, Literature Ministry Seminary dean and instructor at the South Philippine Union Conference. He had served as chair of the theology department of the South Philippine Adventist College. Tornalejo completed his D.Theol. from Theological Union (ATESEA). He is married to Marilou Manatad. They have four children.

First Published: April 26, 2022

Horace Alvin Hall was a teacher, chemist, physician, surgeon, medical missionary, writer, editor, and hospital administrator.

Early Life, Education and Marriage

Horace A. Hall was born in Ward, Allegany County, New York on April 6, 1892, and was the only child of Seventh-day Adventist parents Alvin E. Hall and Susan Amelia Canfield. He spent his childhood and teenage years in Alfred, New York, where he finished his elementary, secondary, and bachelor’s education.1

Horace went to Alfred Grammar School and finished eighth grade during the 1905-1906 school year, then transferred to Alfred Academy from 1907-1911. From 1911 to 1915, Horace went to Alfred College and finished his bachelor’s degree. He then proceeded to the College of Medical Evangelists (now Loma Linda University) from 1916 to 1920 for his degree in Medicine.2

Horace married Helen Evelyn Huber on August 20, 1918, in Loma Linda, California. Helen was born on March 10, 1898, in Daville Illinois, to parents Emil Huber from Germany and Bessie Hedlin from Sweden, but both were U.S. citizens.3

Horace and Helen Hall had two children: Donald and Betty Arlene. Donald was born on March 5, 1922, in Riverside, California, and Betty Arlene on January 20, 1928, in Loma Linda, California.4

Through the influence of his godly wife Helen and the efforts of a dedicated colporteur, a certain brother Lorenz of La Sierra, Horace was converted into the Adventist faith in 1926 while he was practicing medicine in Arlington, California. The following year, he was baptized in Colton, San Bernardino County, California by Pastor Ragsdale.5

He completed his degree of Fellow of American College of Surgeons (FACS) in 1932.6 He also earned a degree of Fellow of International College of Surgeons.7

Ministry

Dr. Horace A. Hall received a call to join the Far Eastern Division to open the medical missionary work in the Philippines in 1927.8 The Halls arrived in the Philippines in August 1928 and started his ministry as the medical superintendent and surgeon of the Manila Sanitarium and Hospital (now Adventist Medical Center, Manila).9 Prior to his assignment to the Philippines, he already practiced medicine in California from 1920 to 1928.10 Together with Dr. H. W. Miller, Dr. Horace A. Hall pioneered the Adventist medical work in the Philippines.11 In particular, Hall was instrumental in the establishment, construction,12 and development of this medical institution.

In a letter to Elder A. Glenn Calkins, president of the Southeastern California Conference, Dr. Hall described his pioneering medical work in Manila as the sole medical missionary among 12,000,000 people.

“It is less than a year since I landed in the Philippines and less than nine months since I began to practice the medical art in Manila. At present I have operated upon over 400 people and have taken care of hundreds upon hundreds of medical cases.”13

He served as the medical director and surgeon of Manila Sanitarium and Hospital for seven years (1928-1935).14 Throughout his years of service in the Philippines, he had only one furlough, and that was in 1933. Horace was ordained while he was serving in the Philippines at Manila Sanitarium and Hospital on December 31, 1932. The ceremony that Sabbath was officiated by Flaviano Dalisay, Frederick Griggs, W. A. Spicer, and R. R. Fighur.15 While serving as the medical director of Manila Sanitarium and Hospital, he also served at the same time as the medical secretary of the Far Eastern Division.16

Upon his return to the United States, Hall served as an operator for a 22-room clinic in Redlands, California, from 1935 to 1945.17 In 1941, Dr. Hall received a call from the General Conference to serve as the medical director of the Iowa Sanitarium in the Northern Union and the Iowa Conference.18 However, there are no records that confirm that he accepted the call.

In 1946, Dr. Hall received a call to return to the Philippines for work; however, he was released from that appointment as voted on April 1, 1946, due to his health condition.19 Instead, from 1946 to 1948, he served as the medical director and surgeon at the Paradise Valley Sanitarium and Hospital, in San Diego, California.20

Starting in August 1946, Hall also served as a contributing editor of Life and Health, a national health journal published by the Review and Herald Publishing Association.21 He served the Life and Health journal in that capacity until May of 1968.22 During the time that he was contributing editor to the journal, he was also a practicing surgeon and director of a clinic in Newport Beach, California.23 Towards the end of 1954, Hall received a call to serve in Addis Ababa, Abyssinia, Ethiopia, and served there from 1955 to 1956.24

Dr. Horace A. Hall died on July 27, 1969, in Loma Linda, California.25 After Horace's death, Helen married Dr. A. D. Butterfield. Helen died on November 25, 1996, in Loma Linda, California.26

Contributions

Dr. Horace A. Hall’s valuable contributions to the Adventist denominational work come through his pioneering medical missionary work in the Philippines. He was the sole medical missionary during the late 1920’s, and while the work seemed to be overwhelming, he persevered. Not only that, he was the first medical director of Manila Sanitarium and Hospital and he was also instrumental in the establishment, construction, and development of this medical institution. Today Adventist Medical Center, Manila is a witness to Dr. Hall’s commitment and dedication to trail blaze the medical mission in the Philippines.

Another significant contribution of Dr. Horace A. Hall in the medical mission of the Adventist Church was his ministry through serving as one of the contributing editors of the Life and Health journal. He served in that capacity for almost twenty-two years and shared the Adventist health message throughout the world through the printed page.

Sources

“Appointments and Itineraries: Dr. Horace A. Hall–Released.” General Conference Committee Minutes, April 1, 1946. Accessed March 24, 2022. https://documents.adventistarchives.org/Minutes/GCC/GCC1946-04.pdf.

“At Rest-Butterfield, Helen Hall.” ARH, April 24, 1997.

Biographical Information Blank, Helen Huber Hall. General Conference Archives.

Biographical Information Blank, Horace Alvin Hall. General Conference Archives.

“Dr. Horace A. Hall–Philippines.” General Conference Committee Minutes, August 10, 1927. Accessed March 27, 2022. https://documents.adventistarchives.org/Minutes/GCC/GCC1927.pdf.

Esteb, Lemuel E. “On To Victory.” North Pacific Union Gleaner, October 15, 1929.

Hall, Horace A. “Like Wild Fire.” Pacific Union Recorder, August 29, 1929.

“Hall, Horace Alvin.” Obituary. ARH, October 9, 1969.

“In Remembrance.” ARH, October 9, 1969.

Lee, Frederick. “Medical Missionary Work in the Far East.” ARH, June 8, 1930.

Life and Health, August 1946; February 1951; February 1951; May 1968.

“Manila Sanitarium and Hospital.” Eastern Canadian Messenger, February 4, 1930.

Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook. Various years. https://www.adventistyearbook.org/.

“Transfers of Workers.” General Conference Committee Minutes, June 8, 1941. Accessed March 24, 2022. https://documents.adventistarchives.org/Minutes/GCC/GCC1941-06.pdf.

Notes

  1. Biographical Information Blank, Horace Alvin Hall. General Conference Archives.

  2. Ibid. See also Lemuel E. Esteb, “On To Victory,” North Pacific Union Gleaner, October 15, 1929, 5.

  3. Biographical Information Blank, Helen Huber Hall. General Conference Archives.

  4. Ibid.

  5. Ibid.

  6. Biographical Information Blank, Horace Alvin Hall.

  7. “Profiles of Contributors: Horace A. Hall, M.D., F.A.C.S, F.I.C.S.,” Life and Health, February 1951, 7.

  8. “Dr. Horace A. Hall-Philippines,” General Conference Committee Minutes, August 10, 1927, 333. https://documents.adventistarchives.org/Minutes/GCC/GCC1927.pdf. Accessed March 27, 2022; “In Remembrance,” ARH, October 9, 1969, 24.

  9. Frederick Lee, “Medical Missionary Work in the Far East,” ARH, June 8, 1930, 132.

  10. Biographical Information Blank, Horace Alvin Hall.

  11. Ibid.

  12. “Manila Sanitarium and Hospital,” Eastern Canadian Messenger, February 4, 1930, 1.

  13. Horace A. Hall, “Like Wild Fire,” Pacific Union Recorder, August 29, 1929, 1. See also Lemuel E. Esteb, “On To Victory,” North Pacific Union Gleaner, October 15, 1929, 5.

  14. Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook, 1935, 296.

  15. Biographical Information Blank, Horace Alvin Hall.

  16. “In Remembrance,” ARH, October 9, 1969, 24.

  17. Biographical Information Blank, Horace Alvin Hall.

  18. “Transfers of Workers,” General Conference Committee Minutes, June 8, 1941, 8. https://documents.adventistarchives.org/Minutes/GCC/GCC1941-06.pdf. Accessed March 24, 2022.

  19. “Appointments and Itineraries: Dr. Horace A. Hall--Released,” General Conference Committee Minutes, April 1, 1946. https://documents.adventistarchives.org/Minutes/GCC/GCC1946-04.pdf. Accessed March 24, 2022.

  20. Biographical Information Blank, Horace Alvin Hall.

  21. “Board of Editors,” Life and Health, August 1946, 4.

  22. “Board of Contributing Editors,” Life and Health, May 1968, 3.

  23. “Profiles of Contributors: Horace A. Hall, M.D., F.A.C.S, F.I.C.S.,” Life and Health, February 1951, 7.

  24. “In Remembrance,” ARH, October 9, 1969, 24. See also, “At Rest-Butterfield, Helen Hall,” ARH, April 24, 1997, 29.

  25. “Hall, Horace Alvin,” obituary, ARH, October 9, 1969, 24.

  26. “At Rest-Butterfield, Helen Hall,” ARH, April 24, 1997, 29.

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Tornalejo, Adlai Wilfred M., Remwil R. Tornalejo. "Hall, Horace Alvin (1892–1969)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. April 26, 2022. Accessed May 24, 2024. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=7AVZ.

Tornalejo, Adlai Wilfred M., Remwil R. Tornalejo. "Hall, Horace Alvin (1892–1969)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. April 26, 2022. Date of access May 24, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=7AVZ.

Tornalejo, Adlai Wilfred M., Remwil R. Tornalejo (2022, April 26). Hall, Horace Alvin (1892–1969). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved May 24, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=7AVZ.