Erastus Hussey & The Underground Railroad

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Erastus Hussey was an early pioneer in Michigan, originally from the New York. He first came to Michigan in 1824, and settled in the Plymouth Township area. He eventually married, and had a child, and then moved to Battle Creek in September 1838. First he was in the shoe repair manufacturing business, and also owned a grocery store. He later owned and operated a dry good store in downtown.

In 1840, he was approached by a man who asked him to serve as a station master on the newly formed Underground Railroad. His station would be in Battle Creek, and his responsibility would be to feed, provide shelter for and help with safe passage fugitive slaves on their way to Canada. He would work in this clandestine activity until 1865, and help over a thousand freedom seekers in twenty-five years.

In this episode I cover some of his back story, as well as his own personal accounts given in his only known interview that he gave about his time in serving the underground railroad. He also told the story about the group of 45 former slaves who came through all one night, following the Kentucky Slave Raid in Cass County.

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