José Julián Acosta Calbo (February 16, 1825 – August 26, 1891), born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, was a distinguished journalist and a fervent advocate of the abolition of slavery in Puerto Rico.
Acosta was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. There he received his primary education. He was one of Rafael Cordero's most notable students. Cordero was an inspiration to Acosta and the influence of his teachings remained with Acosta for the rest of his life. Later, he became a protégé of Father Rufo Manuel Fernández, who would send him to Madrid, Spain to study Physics and Mathematics. After he graduated in 1851, Acosta continued to expand his educational knowledge in Paris, London, and Berlin. In Berlin, he was a student of the naturalist Alexander von Humboldt. When Acosta returned to Puerto Rico, he took a job as a professor of Botany and Maritime Sciences and became the director of the Civil Institute of Secondary Education. Acosta was the founder and editor of the newspaper El Progreso (Progress), and he collaborated with many other newspapers which were oriented toward liberalism.