BATON ROUGE – During his brief yet remarkable career, abolitionist Charles Torrey – called the “father of the Underground Railroad” by his peers – assisted almost 400 slaves in gaining their freedom. A Yale graduate and an ordained minister, Torrey set up a well-organized route for escaped slaves traveling from Washington and Baltimore to Philadelphia and Albany. Arrested in Baltimore in 1844 for his activities, Torrey spent two years in prison before he succumbed to tuberculosis. By then, other abolitionists widely recognized and celebrated Torrey’s exploits: running wagonloads of slaves northward in the night, dodging slave catchers and sheriffs, and involving members of Congress in his schemes. Nonetheless, the historiography of abolitionism has largely overlooked Torrey’s fascinating and compelling story until now. “The Martyrdom of Abolitionist Charles Torrey” is available from LSU Press.