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Bechtel, Paul M. (1957-1998) | Archival Collections at Wheaton College

Name: Bechtel, Paul M. (1957-1998)

Historical Note:

Paul Moyer Bechtel, the son of Henry M. and Eva Reid Bechtel, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on December 13, 1909.

Bechtel was a 1932 graduate of Juniata College. After completing his undergraduate studies Bechtel taught high school English in Waynesboro, Pennsylvania. He continued his studies at Cornell University, receiving a master’s degree in 1936. He began teaching English at Wheaton College in 1946. While teaching, Bechtel worked on and received his Ph.D. from Northwestern University. His dissertation was titled Treasury of Devotional Literature. He served as chairman of the English department from 1966-75. Bechtel was granted a Fulbright professorship at Istanbul University during the 1968-69 academic year.

After his retirement from teaching in 1975 Bechtel served as Assistant to President of Bibles for the World, 1977, for which he served as editor for a Bible series. After his retirement Bechtel also took on several other editing projects like the ten volume Confessions of St. Augustine or Thomas a Kempis’ Imitation of Christ, both for Moody Press. He was also asked to research and write the official history of Wheaton College for its Quasquicentennial, or 125th anniversary. This book was titled Wheaton College: a heritage remembered and was published in 1984.

In 1948 Bechtel married Mary Krom and together they raised four children. After a long battle with cancer Bechtel died on January 15, 1998.

Note Author: Wheaton College Archives & Special Collections staff

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