Alexander Ruben VanTassel was the son of Ruben and Elizabeth VanTassel of Brooklyn, Kings County,
New York. Their family consisted of 4 children, Alexander being the oldest. He was born there on March 31, 1854 and was educated in the schools of that location. He learned the tanner's trade in
Wobern, Massachusetts, practicing that occupation for some time in Bolivar, NY, and in New York City. About 1884, he came to western Pennsylvania, establishing a tannery business in DuBois, with his
brother Edward, and was also affiliated with John DuBois. In 1899, he relinquished his interest in that business, and constructed his building for a tannery
business of his own, hiring his own workers. He purchased land and laid out a lot plan for the VanTassel Addition in DuBois.
Mr. VanTassel was twice married, his first wife being Jennie Thomas, whom he married in Allegheny County,
NY. He and Jennie had one son, Stephen. His second wife was Alice Henderson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. B. Henderson, of Brookville. They were the parents of a daughter, Blanche.
Alexander R. VanTassel died on December 7, 1921, and was buried near the Henderson family plots in Brookville Cemetery, in Brookville, Jefferson County, PA.