Celebrating Women's History Month in the WNCC: Mrs. Margaret Dixon
March 29, 2022
By: Jim Pyatt, WNCC Archivist & Historian
Rev. Margaret Kuhns Dixon
In the President’s Report of the 1917 Journal of the North Carolina Conference of the Methodist Protestant Church, among his listings of “fields supplied,” there is the simple statement of “Mrs. A. G. Dixon to Lebanon Church,” (p. 28) which means that Mrs. Dixon was appointed as pastor at Lebanon Methodist Protestant Church in High Point to complete the conference year when the previous pastor, the Rev. P. S. Kennett was released from that church and assigned to Concord. This simple statement marks the first known appointment of a female pastor to a Methodist congregation within the bounds of the present Western North Carolina Conference.
Margaret Kuhns Dixon was the wife of the Rev. Arminius Gray Dixon, a clergy member of the North Carolina Conference of the Methodist Protestant Church, who was pastor at First Methodist Protestant Church, High Point when his wife was assigned as pastor at Lebanon. Prior to their marriage, Margaret served from 1893-98 as a missionary to Japan under the Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society of the Methodist Protestant Church, then as traveling secretary for fourteen years. “In 1908, when the North Carolina branch of the Woman’s Home Missionary Society was formed, Mrs. Dixon was elected as the first President. “She was then elected President of the Woman’s Home Missionary Society in 1912, a position she held until that group became part of the Board of Missions in 1928.
With her husband, Dr. Dixon, she was a leading force in the successful Children’s Home at High Point during his term as administrator [1928-41].” (Ethel W. Born, By My Spirit ([New York:] Women’s Division of the General Board of Global Ministries, 1990), 138.)
Be sure to read the other biographies written by WNCC Archivist & Historian Jim Pyatt:
Rev. M. B. Lee McCrary, the first woman to become a full clergy member of the Western North Carolina Conference.
Rev. Dolores Barus Queen, the first woman to serve as District Superintendent in the Western NC Conference.
Bishop Charlene P. Kammerer, the first (and to date, the only) woman to serve as Bishop of the Western North Carolina Conference.
Mrs. Jettie Morrison, a key figure in the Women's Society of Christian Service and the integration of The United Methodist Church in 1968.
Bishop L. Scott Allen (May 4, 1918-September 18, 2004), the first (and to date, the only) African-American to serve as Bishop of the Western North Carolina Conference.
Mrs. Effie Miller (September 17, 1930-September 1, 2008), a leader in the Western North Carolina Conference and the United Methodist Church, especially with regard to the United Methodist Women.
The Rev. Dr. J. C. Peters (July 10, 1925- July 2, 1998), the first African-American to serve as a District Superintendent in the Western North Carolina Conference.
Mr. Clarence Winchester, a leader in the North Carolina Conference (Central Jurisdiction) and in the WNC Conference.
Dr. Isaac Miller (September 26, 1920-November 1, 2008), a leader in Higher Education and in the United Methodist Church.