Beaver, Robert Pierce, North American historian and documentalist of mission, born in Hamilton, Ohio, 26 May 1906, died, Tucson, Arizona, 20 November 1987.
Beaver studied at Oberlin College and Cornell University (Ph.D., 1933) and was in parish ministry before going to China as an Evangelical and Reformed Church missionary in 1938. He taught at Central China Union Theological Seminary in Hunan, was interned in Hong Kong and repatriated in 1943. He taught at Lancaster Theological Seminary, then in 1948 became director of the Mission Research Library (MRL) at Union Theological Seminary New York. In 1955 he was appointed professor of missions at the University of Chicago Divinity School. Personally modest, his writings on comity, women in mission, and American Missions in Bicentennial Perspective (1976) laid the foundations for a new generation of missionary scholarship. His Occasional Bulletin from the MRL continues as the International Bulletin of Missionary Research.
Beaver, R. Pierce. American Protestant Women in World Mission : History of the First Feminist Movement in North America. Rev. ed. Grand Rapids, Mich.: W. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1980.