William Alfred Passavant, Renewer of the Society
William Alfred Passavant – Renewer of the Society –
Born in Zelienople, Butler County, Pennsylvania, 9 October, 1821. He graduated from Jefferson college, Pennsylvania, in 1840, and at the Lutheran theological seminary, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in 1842. In the latter year he was ordained to the ministry, and he held pastorates in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1842-‘4, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1844-’55. He was instrumental in the establishment of hospitals at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Chicago and Jacksonville, Illinois, and orphanages at Rochester, Pennsylvania, Zelienople, Pennsylvania, and Mr. Vernon, New York. He was the first to introduce the order of deaconesses in any hospital in this country in 1849, but, owing to a “lack of support, his project failed. He was the leader of the movement that resulted in the establishment of Thiel college, Greenville, Pennsylvania, in 1870. Dr. Passavant published a large number of sermons, addresses, and reports. He was the founder of the “Missionary” in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1848, and its editor until it was merged, in 1861, into the “Lutheran and Missionary” in Philadelphia, and then for a number of years he was one of the editors of the combined periodical. In 1880 he founded the “Workman,” a bi-weekly, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, of which he was editor until 1887.