Vassar, John Ellison
John Ellison Vassar (1813–1878) grew up in Poughkeepsie, New York. He was 28 years when he had a distinct conversion experience. For a number of years he evangelized in Dutchess County, N.Y., and other cities. He also spent a short time doing temperance work. In 1863, commissioned by the American Tract Society, he began his ministry to soldiers fighting the Civil War. After the Gettysburg fight he was captured by Stuart's Calvary. When questioned as a suspected spy before General Stuart he asked "General, do you love Jesus?" He was promptly released to go back behind the Union lines. "During the winter of 1863–64 there was a great revival, and especially in the Third Corps. Meetings were held nightly, and thousands were converted." He had a way about him that even the most disagreeable violent people would be calmly won over. After the war he traveled the country and his last days were spent in the New England States.
Father: Thomas Vassar.
Mother: Joanna Ellison.
Wife: Mary Lee.
Children: Walter, Albert, Hattie, and Johnnie.