Mary C. Bryan

During Women’s month at Osceola County Historical Society, we are celebrating Mary C. Bryan for her contributions as an educator. Miss Bryan came to Florida in January 1892. She was 26 at the time when she moved to Florida from Georgia and it was the first year of the forty that she served as a teacher. She was given the third grade and she never changed to the day she retired in 1932.

Miss Mary made her home here in Kissimmee with her brother Bert and his wife Annie. She influenced hundreds of children during her time. Over the years, she kept up with many of them after they left her school, providing scholarship funds to the needy and constantly offering words of encouragement. Miss Mary was known for her love of music and the arts; she offered many students musical lessons and programs.

“She was the first teacher in Florida who used a specialist in music,” says her great niece Joan Bryan Weaver Walker of Orlando.

Miss Bryan died in Kissimmee in 1950 and on October 23rd, 1951, the Mary C. Bryan Elementary School was dedicated and named for her. For 40 years Miss Bryan was part of shaping the community and impacted children that remembered her for her teachings and love for her students.

Sources:

The Osceola County Centennial Book. Osceola County, 1987.

“Dedication Held For New School.” The Orlando Sentinel, October 24th, 1951.

Photo of Mary C. Bryan, top left, with her Brother Nathan Colbert Bryan, his wife Annie Oliver Bryan,
Photo of Mary C. Bryan, top left, with her Brother Nathan Colbert Bryan, his wife Annie Oliver Bryan,