February 24: Ellen Minott Sherman (1901)

The family of Ellen Minott Sherman obviously valued education. Her father’s ancestry included a long line of ministers and lawyers, including founding father Roger Sherman. Her father, Henry Sherman, was a Yale graduate and a noted lawyer, judge, and author. Her maternal grandfather was publisher of the New York Evening Post. The Post was founded in 1801 by Alexander Hamilton and was a respected broadside of the 19th Century prior to its present day tabloid format.

When Ellen was 11 years old, her father took a job with the Treasury Department and moved the family to Washington. In 1867, Ellen was enrolled at Vassar College in Poughkeepisie, NY. Vassar had been founded six years earlier and was the first degree-granting institution of higher education for women in the United States. With Ellen’s college graduation also came her confirmation at Epiphany. Ellen’s parents are both listed as Epiphany communicants at the time. It comes as no surprise that Ellen would want to spend her life enabling the education of others. As can be seen in the accompanying advertisement in the Atlantic Monthly, Ellen operated “Miss Ellen Minott Sherman’s Boarding and Day School for Girls.” Ellen Sherman passed away February 23, 1901, age 50 and was buried from Epiphany.

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