Jakob Abramovitch Klaassen: teacher; born 3 August 1847 in the Bergthal settlement, Ekaterinoslav, South Russia. He was seventh of nine children of Abram Klaassen (19 August 1810 - 24 August 1864), the volost secretary, and Anna (Martens) Klaassen (31 May 1812 - 26 September 1876), (Jakob's father had two children from his first marriage to Katarina Kropp [1811-1833]). On 16 July 1875 he married Agnes Sudermann (5 October 1850, Tashchenak, Taurida, South Russia - 18 December 1923, Chortitza, Chortitza Settlement, South Russia), daughter of Johann Suderman (13 July 1815 - 13 February 1865) and Katharina (Schroeder) Suderman (20 May 1812 - 9 July 1883). Jakob and Agnes had six children: Anna, Katharina, Agnes, Jacob, Peter and Johann. Jakob died 16 December 1919, in Rosental, Chortitza Settlement.
In the history of Mennonite education in the Ukraine he occupies a prominent place. He taught for 46 years. At the age of 17, upon completion of the course in the Chortitza Zentralschule, he began his career as a teacher in the elementary school, and 16 years later transferred to the Chortitza Zentralschule, where he taught from 1881-1895.
Klaassen was a man of unusual capacity for work and self-discipline, continuing his own education until he was at the head of the teaching profession among the Russian Mennonites. He was an earnest Christian, rooted deeply in Mennonitism in thought, feeling, and deed. He was an ardent advocate of girls' schools, and helped to establish them among the Russian Mennonites. The rapid growth of the Chortitza Madchenschule, where he taught the last 18 years of his life, was principally his achievement. His teaching subjects were religion, German, Russian, history and drawing.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 504.
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E, H. "Klaassen, Jakob Abramovitch (1847-1919)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 1 Sep 2015. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Klaassen,_Jakob_Abramovitch_(1847-1919)&oldid=88703.
E, H. (1957). Klaassen, Jakob Abramovitch (1847-1919). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 1 September 2015, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Klaassen,_Jakob_Abramovitch_(1847-1919)&oldid=88703.
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