Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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PASSAVANT, William Alfred, clergyman, born in Zelienople, Butler County, Pennsylvania, 9 October, 1821. He was graduated at 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 Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, in 1844-'55. Since then his time has been occupied with editorial duties, but chiefly with works of philanthropy. He has been instrumental in the establishment of hospitals at Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Chicago and Jacksonville, Illinois, and orphanages at Rochester, Pennsylvania, Zelienople, Pennsylvania, and Mr. Vernon, New York. The hospitals are under his special supervision. 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, and has since then been one of its trustees. Dr. Passavant has published a large number of sermons, addresses, and reports. He was the founder of the "Missionary" in Pittsburg, 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 Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, of which he was editor until 1887.
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