CROSBY, Frances Jane (later van Alstyne). b. Putnam County, New York, 24 March 1820; d. Bridgeport, Connecticut, 12 February 1915. ‘Fanny’ Crosby was born to a distinguished Puritan family. She was blinded, probably through bad treatment for an eye infection from a man passing himself off as a doctor, when she was six weeks old. Her father died the same year. She was raised as a Presbyterian by her mother and grandmother, and later by a Mrs Hawley. She attended the New York City School for the Blind where she excelled as a singer, pianist, guitarist, organist and harpist, and showed that she possessed a remarkable memory and intelligence, and where she later became a teacher. She married...
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