John Cecil Haussler

1899 - 1986

John Haussler, known primarily as a history teacher, was also active as a musician. During his 60-year career he taught history, conducted choirs, served as a minister, an academy principal and dean of men, and, during his last 35 years of service, became well-known as a professor of biblical studies at La Sierra College, now La Sierra University, and Loma Linda University. In addition to working at LSC and LLU, he also worked at Canadian Junior College, now Canadian Union College University; Southwestern Junior College, now Southwestern Adventist University; and Southern Junior College, now Southern Adventist University.

John was born in Alvin, Texas, one of seven children of Gustav Dietrich and Louise Emma Anna Schneider Haussler. The 1900 Galveston flood created a surge that destroyed the family farm and led to their moving to Kelso, Washington, in 1909, where they established a farm. John attended Walla Walla College and graduated with a degree in history. Following his first teaching position at Canadian Junior College, he accepted a position at Southwestern Junior College, where he met Doris Holt, head of the music department. They married in 1925.

Haussler's most significant involvement in music came when he and Doris accepted positions as teachers at Southern Junior College in 1928. Officially he was to teach all of the history and government classes and some Bible, and she to assist in music, teaching piano and voice on a commission basis. By the beginning of their second year on campus, though, she was appointed head of the music department. During the next six years she conducted a women's chorus and the orchestra, organized and accompanied vocal groups and soloists, and made the first effort to create a school song.

He, in addition to teaching in other areas, assisted in music also, directing the college church choir, college chorus, and a male glee club. He also taught a conducting class and led out in regular regional radio broadcasts of college choral groups. Even though the Hausslers were totally immersed in all aspects of life at the school, they still found time to take students on field trips to attend classical music events in nearby Chattanooga.

Following the Tennessee experience Haussler served as principal at Walla Walla College Academy in Washington state, where his wife taught music from 1935 until 1941, when they moved to LSC.

The Hausslers were living in Riverside, California, when he died at age 86.


Sources: Perry Family Tree (John Cecil Haussler),; Obituaries: (John) Adventist Review, 28 August 1986, Walla Walla College Westwind; (Doris) Pacific Union Recorder, 20 March 1989; Dennis Pettibone, A Century of Challenge, The Story of Southern College 1892-1992, 1992, 126, 127; Dan Shultz, A Great Tradition, Music at Walla Walla College, 1982-1992, 242.