Joseph Cassey Bustill (1822-1895)

Joseph Cassey Bustill was born in Philadelphia in 1822; He was a schoolteacher, dedicated abolitionist, and an innovative conductor on the Underground Railroad, working out of Harrisburg, PA.  His letters to the abolitionist leader William Still details Joseph’s deep involvement and clandestine activities within the Underground Railroad, and are a testament to his enduring legacy. Joseph was known as an innovator in utilizing various techniques in conducting operations which “include the regular use of trains to forward fugitives, and the use of the telegraph to send coded messages of activities.” (  Joseph is also notable for founding the First Colored Presbyterian Church of Harrisburg, PA.  He married Sarah Humphreys and they had a child, Anna Amelia Bustill, who became a teacher and published author.

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