• Born 29 November 1831
  • Deceased 3 October 1896,aged 64 years old
  • Buried - Colonel Eleazer Lindsley Burying Ground, Lindley, NY


 Spouses and children



Individual Note

Joseph Fowler was educated at Pennington Seminary, Pennington, New Jersey, and became a well-to-do merchant at New Brunswick, New Jersey, and afterwards United States contractor for forage, etc., at Lawrenceville, Penna., acquiring considerable property. His sister Mary married Col. James Woodruff, a Railroad Superintendent of Elizabeth, New Jersey, and his sister Rebecca a Mr. Ryno, an undertaker, of Rahway, New Jersey.

Joseph Fowler Rusling was born in Bridgton, Cumberland county, New Jersey, November 29, 1831, a son of Rev. Sedgwick and Electa W. (Cummings) Rusling, natives of New Jersey, and of English extraction. His parents reared a family of seven children, and his father died in Lawrenceville in 1876. Joseph F. was educated in the public schools of New Jersey and at Pennington Seminary. In September, 1847, he secured a clerkship with Bishop & Newell, a large grocery, grain and coal firm of New Brunswick, New Jersey. Five years later he bought the business and conducted it successfully for a long period. In 1855 he was appointed an agent for Asa Packer for the sale of coal in New York City. He shipped the first coal by rail to Newark, New Jersey, connecting the New Jersey Central, at Elizabeth, with the New Jersey railroad. These two roads having different gauges, he invented the broad tread-wheel, which permitted the cars to go direct through to Newark without unloading. Mr. Rusling was founder and president of the second building and loan association in the United States. At the breaking out of the Rebellion, he secured letters from President Frelinghuysen, of Rutgers College, to President Lincoln and Secretary Seward, and going to Washington, D. C., obtained a contract for supplying the government with forage. In October, 1861, he was appointed agent of the government to handle forage shipped over the Baltimore and Ohio railroad under Colonel Ingals. In the spring of 1862 he became agent of the government to purchase hay and oats in the west, ship them to the seat of war and oversee their transportation. While thus engaged he was taken sick and returned to his home in May, 1862, and for two years was unable to do any business. In 1864 he removed with his family to Lawrenceville, Tioga county, which continued to be his place of residence until his death, October 3, 1896. The first year of his residence in this village he bought hay and grain for the government. In 1868 he embarked in the hay business for himself, operating at times as many as fifteen presses, and continued the business up to 1873. In 1871 he invented a hay-tie, which is now in general use, and the same year he erected the Rusling block in Lawrenceville. In 1878 he took charge of the cattle bill in congress for the Humane Society, and finally secured laws for the better transportation of live stock from the west to the eastern markets. On December 23, 1857, Mr. Rusling married Stella Shoemaker Orten, a daughter of Dr. M. P. Orten, and grand-daughter of Hon. James Ford, a pioneer of Lawrenceville. Six children were born to this union, as follows: Elizabeth L., wife of R. D. Brundage, of Wilkes-Barre; Charles S., Ford O., Frank D., Henry D. and Stella. Mr. Rusling was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and was also connected with the I. O. O. F. and the F. & A. M. societies. In politics, a Republican, he was burgess of Lawrenceville and president of the school board in that borough at different periods.

Stella S. married, in her early life, Mr. J. S. Rusling, who has been for forty years a prominent figure in many large business transactions in Washington, New York, and Philadelphia. Mr. Rusling has a vein of mechanical ingenuity, which has served him in good stead in a number of inventions of considerable merit. He now occupies the old family home in Lawrenceville. Mr. and Mrs. Rusling have six children, four sons and two daughters. The sons are young men of unusual energy and sagacity in business. Charles S., the oldest, completed a college course in Rutgers College, New Brunswick, New Jersey, graduating there in 1882. Ford, the second son, is a manager of electric street car lines, with a high reputation for skill and efficiency. He is now located in Rochester, New York. The younger sons are also connected with the same branch of business. Of the two daughters, the older, Mrs. Brundage, resides in Wilkesbarre. The younger, Stella, is still at home at Lawrenceville.
source: Book - The Rusling Family - James F. Rusling - J. B. Lippincott Company, Philadelphia, 1907Page 96

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James Rusling 1762-1826 Mary Fowler 1766-1809  

Sedgwick Rusling 1799-1876 Electa W. Cummins 1802-1867

Joseph Fowler Rusling 1831-1896