Archive:Joseph Clement Whitney (1838-1914)

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Archives > Archive:Biographies > Joseph Clement Whitney (1838-1914)

Biographical Review, Volume XX, Containing Life Sketches of Leading Citizens of Sagadahoc, Lincoln, Knox, and Waldo Counties, Maine, Boston, MA: Biographical Review Publishing Company, 1897, pp. 166, 169.


"Joseph Clement Whitney, M.D., an able physician of Thorndike, Waldo County, who has a large and profitable general practice in this section of the county, was born in Phillips, Franklin County, February 26, 1838, son of Benjamin M. and Susan (Wells) Whitney. Ancestors of Dr. Whitney resided in Massachusetts in Colonial times; and his grandfather, Micah Whitney, fought for independence at the battle of Bunker Hill. Some time after the Revolutionary War, Micah settled in Gorham, Me., and lived there until 1811, working at his trade of blacksmith. Then he moved to Phillips, where he followed his trade for the rest of his life. He lived to be nearly ninety years old. With his wife, Hannah (Cobb) Whitney, he reared a family of twelve children, none of whom died under the age of forty-six. Benjamin M. Whitney, born in Gorham, received his elementary education in the district schools. Subsequently he attended the academy in Limerick, Me., where he was a classmate of one of the Fessendens; and he taught school in this State during the winter until 1868. He then went to Arkansas and from there to Texas. In the latter State he was engaged in teaching for some time. Afterward he went mining in New Mexico. Here, on one occasion, having entered a mine too soon after a blast, he was prostrated by gas, from the effects of which he never recovered. He returned to his home in Maine after a residence of eighteen years in the West, and died from the cause just mentioned. A scholar and an educator of ability, he fully merited the high regard accorded to him by his neighbors and fellow-townsmen. His wife, Susan, a native of Mount Vernon, Me., and a daughter of Nathaniel and Susan (Harris) Wells, of Ipswich, Mass., became the mother of seven children. These were: Phebe C., who is no longer living; Royal T., who now resides in Texas; Martin V., a resident of Lewiston, Me.; Melvina, who is now deceased; Joseph C. Whitney, the subject of this sketch; Mary Clementine, who is the twin sister of Dr. Whitney, and lives in Phillips; and Benjamin D. who resides in Gardiner, Me.

"Having acquired his elementary education in the district schools, Joseph Clement Whitney attended the Phillips High School and the Lewiston Seminary. He began to read medicine with Dr. Sanborn, and later was a student of Dr. Plaisted. After attending a course of lectures at the Maine Medical School in Brunswick in 1861, he entered the University of the City of New York, where he completed his medical studies, and graduated in 1863. He began his professional career in Freedom, Me., where he practised successfully for fifteen years. Then, believing that better prospects awaited him here, he came to Thorndike. His subsequent success has fully verified his anticipations. At the present time he is kept constantly busy in attending calls from all parts of the broad section of which Thorndike is the central point, a fact that is the best proof of his professional skill and reliability. Dr. Whitney married Zubie E. Keen, daughter of Thomas S. Keen, of Thorndike, who was formerly a resident of Montville, Me. Mrs. Whitney is the mother of two children, namely: J. Osborn, who wedded Ethel Monroe, and resides in Unity, Me.: and Hattie L., who is now the wife of B. F. Stantial, of Brooks, Me. Dr. Whitney was formerly a member of the Waldo County Medical Society, and is connected with the Masonic lodge in Thorndike. In politics he acts with the Republican party, and he cast his first Presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln in 1860."

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