Born in Pleasant Valley, Livingston County, Michigan; Mary Ross attended Michigan Agricultural College, graduating in 1903. She married Chauncey Preston Reynolds in 1902, an editor of the Prairie Farmer. Widowed in 1910 with two small children, she embarked on a successful career as an editor of weekly farm journals, and was among the first women in the field. Moving to D.C. to work for the U.S. Department of Agriculture during WWI, she later accepted a job offer in Philadelphia, PA. In Philadelphia, she began collecting cookbooks, which she later donated to her Alma Mater. Her donation became the core of the MSU Libraries Special Colletions' cookery collection. Mrs. Reynolds was recognized with a Distinguished Alumni Award at the MSU Commencement Exercises in 1947. She passed away on January, 6 1963.