Archive:The Descendants of John Whitney, page 359

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The Descendants of John Whitney, Who Came from London, England, to Watertown, Massachusetts, in 1635, by Frederick Clifton Pierce (Chicago: 1895)

Transcribed by the Whitney Research Group, 1999.


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WHITNEY GENEALOGY. 359

mained till 1830, carrying on a business in machine and forge-works, when he was appointed assistant superintendent of the Mohawk & Hudson railroad, and be- came superintendent the following year. Resigning this post in 1839, he was elected canal commissioner of N. Y. state, and for two years superintended the enlarge- ment and management of the Erie canal and its branches. In 1842 he removed to Philadelphia and entered into the manufacture of locomotives with Matthew W. BALDWIN, but withdrew from the partnership in two years. Soon afterwards he became president of the Morris Canal Company, for which he applied special ma- chinery to a series of inclined planes by steam, by which means its boats could pass elevations. He took out patents on May 22, 1847, for the corrugated plate- wheel and began their manufacture with his son Geo. as partner. On April 25, 1848, he patented his process for annealing car wheels. It consisted in placing the wheels soon after they were cast in a heated furnace, where they were subjected to a further gradual increase of temperature, and were then cooled slowly for three days. The discovery of this process of annealing, as applied to chilled cast-iron wheels marked an era in the history of railroads. It enabled them with safety to in- crease both loads and speed. Previous to this discovery it was impossible to cast wheels with solid hubs, and therefore impossible to secure them rigidly to the axle. Now the whole wheel was easily cast in one piece, and capable of being forced securely upon the axle at a pressure of forty tons. Over ten million car wheels are now in use in this country, and this principle of annealing is applied in some form to every wheel that is made of chilled cast iron. On March 19, 1850, he patented the tapered and ribbed corrugated wheel. For many years he made from 50,000 to 75, 000 car wheels per annum. The business is still carried on by the firm of A. Whit- ney & Sons. In 1860, Mr. Whitney was made president of the Reading railroad, but he resigned in a year from failing health, after contributing largely to the success of the road. He gave liberally during his life and among other public bequests he gave $50,000 to found a professorship of dynamical engineering in the University of Pennsylvania, $12,500 to the Franklin Institute, and $20,000 to the Old men's Home in Philadelphia. He left a princely fortune to his family, and was probably the only millionaire among the sons of Townsend. He d. June 4, 1874; res. Brownsville, N. Y., and Philadelphia, Pa. 5387. i. WILLIAM WALLIS, b. Sept. 1, 1817; d. unm. in Cuba, Nov. 17, 1847, civil engineer. 5388. ii. GEORGE, b. Oct. 17, 1819; m. Mary J. ELY. 5389. iii. MARY JANE, b. Nov. 8, 1821; m. Aug. 16, 1843, John H. REDFIELD, b. July 10, 1815; res. 216 W. Logan Square, Philadelphia, Pa. Ch.: William Wallace, b. July 7, 1844; m. Oct. 31, 1872, Emma STODDARD; res. Minneapolis, Minn.; Clarinda, b. July 30, 1846; d. unm. Aug. 4, 1891; Robert Stuart, b. May 2, 1849; m. Oct. 30, 1877, Mary T. GUILLON; res. 3766 Walnut St., Phil., Pa.; Eliza Whitney, b. Dec. 13, 1851; res. 216 W. Logan Squ., Phil., Pa. 5390. iv. DANIEL LYMAN, b. Feb., 1824; d. infancy May 24, 1825. 5391. v. ELIZA, b. Jan. 25, 1826; m. June 9, 1857, Rev. M. A. DeWolfe HOWE, D. D., b. Apr. 5, 1808; res. Reading, Pa. Ch.: Arthur Whitney, 2032 DeLancey place, Phila., Pa.; m. Mary W. DEUCKLAN, Apr. 4, 1888; b. May 15, 1859; Anna Barnard, dec'd; b. May 8, 1858; Mark A. DeWolfe, b. Aug. 28, 1864; address, 41 Temple place, Boston, Mass.; Antoinette DeWolfe, dec'd; b. Jan. 13, 1861; Wallis Eastburn, b. Sept 12, 1868; address, 91 Mt. Vernon St., Boston, Mass. Howe, Mark Anthony DeWolfe, P. E. bishop, b. in Bristol R. I., Apr. 5, 1808. He was graduated at Brown in 1828; ordained deacon in 1832, and priest in 1833. In Octo- ber of the latter year he became rector of St. James church, Roxbury, Mass., where he remained three years, and then re- moving to Cambridge, was rector of Christ church, and editor of the Christian Witness. Returning to Roxbury in 1836 he remained there ten years, and then became rector of St. Luke's church, Philadelphia, where he officiated till 1865, when he was consecrated bishop of central Pennsylvania. From 1850 till 1862 he was secretary of the house of clerical and lay deputies, and he was a deputy to the general convention from that date till 1872. In 1865 he was elected missionary bishop of Nevada, but declined. He received the degree of D. D. from Brown in 1848, and from the University of Pennsylvania in 1876. He has

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