Blessed Assurance is just one of 9,000 hymns written by one of the most prolific hymn writers in history—Fanny Crosby, who was blind at birth. Many of her hymns are still song today. Fanny Crosby was 15 when she was enrolled at the newly founded New York Institute for the Blind. It was her home for 23 years; first as a student and then for 12 years as an influential teacher and political activist. As her hymn writing grew more popular, so did her influence. By some accounts, she was “one of the best known women in North America,” and became the first woman to address Congress. In her 95-year life, Fanny Crosby was not only a prolific poet but engaged in memorizing the Bible. She was able to recite large portions of the first four books of the Hebrew Bible and the four Gospels.