Katherine (Kate) Augusta Sierkie Hanhardt
1884 - 1932
Katherine Sierkie, a singer born in Prussia, taught voice at three Adventist colleges in the U.S. in the opening years of the twentieth century. While completing her education at the Sorbonne University in Paris, she converted to the Seventh-day Adventist message and transferred to the Adventist training school at Friedensau, Germany, to study Bible.
In 1909, Sierkie was asked by the General Conference to teach voice at Pacific Union College, formerly Healdsburg College, which was reopening that year in Angwin, California. After three years at PUC she accepted an invitation to teach music at Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, where she taught until 1915.
In that year, she married Wesley H. Hanhardt, a minister located in Kansas. Five years later, they went to Texas, where she was known as the "sweet singer" of the college, taught voice, and conducted the choir at Southwestern Junior College until 1923. The Hanhardts enjoyed working during summer vacations in evangelism in Texas and Oklahoma.
When he became home missions director, they moved to San Antonio, Texas. They were living there when she died at age 47, following a two-year illness.
Sources: Obituaries, Southwestern Union Record, 13 April 1932 and Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, 5 May 1932; 1921-1923 Mizpah, Southwestern Junior College yearbook; Walter C. Utt, A Mountain, A Pickax, A College, (identified in photographs of early faculty as Kate Sierkie), 1968, 52, 53; Listed as Kate Sierke(sic) in promotional materials for Union College, 1912-1915.