Indelible Grace Hymnbook

Frances Jane Crosby

Born: March 24, 1820, Put­nam Coun­ty, New York.

Died: Feb­ru­a­ry 12, 1915, Bridge­port, Con­nec­ti­cut.

Buried: Moun­tain Grove Cem­e­te­ry, Bridge­port, Con­nec­ti­cut.

Fanny Cros­by was prob­ab­ly the most pro­lif­ic hym­nist in his­to­ry. Though blind­ed by an in­com­pe­tent doc­tor at six weeks of age, she wrote over 8,000 hymns. About her blind­ness, she said:

It seemed in­tend­ed by the bless­ed prov­i­dence of God that I should be blind all my life, and I thank him for the dis­pen­sa­tion. If per­fect earth­ly sight were of­fered me to­mor­row I would not ac­cept it. I might not have sung hymns to the praise of God if I had been dis­tract­ed by the beau­ti­ful and in­ter­est­ing things about me.

In her life­time, Fan­ny Cros­by was one of the best known wo­men in the Unit­ed States. To this day, the vast ma­jor­i­ty of Amer­i­can hym­nals con­tain her work. Her se­cu­lar works in­clude:

The Blind Girl, 1844
Monterey and Other Po­ems, 1851
A Wreath of Co­lum­bia’s Flow­ers, 1858
Bells at Ev­en­ing and Other Vers­es (New York: Big­low & Main, 1897)
On her 85th birth­day, Amer­i­can pre­si­dent Gro­ver Cleve­land wrote to Fan­ny:

My dear friend:

It is more than fif­ty years ago that our ac­quaint­ance and friend­ship be­gan; and ev­er since that time I have watched your con­tin­u­ous and in­ter­est­ed la­bor in up­lift­ing hu­man­i­ty, and point­ing out the way to an ap­pre­ci­a­tion of God’s good­ness and mer­cy.

Though your la­bors have, I know, brought you abun­dant re­wards in your con­scious­ness of good ac­comp­lished, those who have known of your works and sym­pa­thized with your no­ble pur­pos­es owe it to them­selves that you are ap­prized of their re­mem­brance of these things. I am, there­fore, ex­ceed­ing­ly gra­ti­fied to learn that your eighty-fifth birth­day is to be cel­e­brat­ed with a dem­on­stra­tion of this re­mem­brance. As one proud to call you an old friend, I de­sire to be ear­ly in con­gra­tu­lat­ing you on your long life of use­ful­ness, and wish­ing you in the years yet to be add­ed to you, the peace and com­fort born of the love of God.

Yours ve­ry sin­cere­ly,
Grover Clev­eland

Source: The Cyber Hymnal