Family:Whitney, Abraham Johnson (1820-1891)

From WRG
Jump to navigationJump to search

Capt. Abraham Johnson8 Whitney (Zerah7, James6, Samuel5, Samuel4, Nathaniel3, John2, John1), son of Zerah7 and Jane (Demond) Whitney, was born 13 Jan 1820, Genoa, NY, and died 12 Mar 1891, Grand Rapids, MI.

He married firstly, 26 Apr 1852, Whitneyville, MI, Julia Ann Morse, daughter of Benjamin Morse, of Lowell, MI. She was born 1833, NY, and died 12 Jul 1865, Grand Rapids, MI, aged 32 years.

He married secondly, 17 Nov 1866, Muskegon, MI, Virginia Amanda Chatterdon, daughter of ----- and Minerva (Dryer) Chatterdon. She was born in Victor, NY, and died 20 Mar 1868, Muskegon, MI.

He married thirdly, 18 May 1870, Grand Rapids, MI, Frances Bennett, daughter of John and Elizabeth (Lewis) Bennett. She was born 16 Dec 1840, London, England.

He was a carpenter and millwright by trade. At the beginning of the Mexican war he enlisted for five years in the 2d U. S. infantry, took part in the battle of Monterey, was later under Gen. Scott and fought in the battles of Vera Cruz, Contreras, Churubusco, Chepultepec, and Molino del Rey and in the final capture of Mexico. After the war he returned to New York and soon went to California where he spent about two years gold hunting. Returning to Whitneyville, MI, he was married. When the civil war broke out in 1861 he at once enlisted as second lieutenant in the 3d Michigan infantry. Participated in the battle of Bull Run, siege of Yorktown, Williamsburg and Fair Oaks. Promoted to captain he took part in the other battles, but on account of illness he resigned in 1862, since which time until his death he resided in Grand Rapids. He resided Grand Rapids, MI.

Phoenix says the following:

"Abraham Johnson Whitney, b. at Genoa, N.Y., 13 Jan. 1820; a carpenter and millwright. At the beginning of the Mexican war, he enlisted in the 2d Reg., U. S. Infantry, for five years or the war; took part in the battle of Monterey, under Gen. Zachary Taylor; and was afterward transferred to the command of Gen. Winfield Scott, under whom he fought in the siege of Vera Cruz, the battles of Contreras, Churubusco, Chepultepec, and Molino del Rey, and in the final capture of Mexico. Returning to New York with the army, he was there discharged, and soon after went to California, and spent eighteen months in gold-mining. He then returned to Whitneyville, Mich., where he married, 26 Ap. 1852, Julia Ann Morse, dau. of Benjamin Morse, of Lowell, Mich. At the beginning of the war of 1861, he entered the service as second lieut. in the 3d Reg., Mich. Vol. Infantry, commissioned 13 May 1861; and took part in the first battle of Bull Run, the siege of Yorktown, and the engagements at Williamsburgh and Fair Oaks, or Seven Pines. He was then promoted to the grade of captain; and participated in the seven days campaign before Richmond, the retreat to Harrison's Landing, and all of the battles in Gen. Pope's campaign, ending at the second Bull Run. Finding himself unfitted for active service by rheumatism, brought on by fatigue and exposure, he resigned 29 Sept 1862. His wife died at Grand Rapids, Mich., 12 July 1865, aged 32 years, and was buried at Whitneyville. He married (2d), 17 Nov. 1866, at Muskegon, Mich., Virginia Amanda Chatterdon, of Lowell, Mich., who was born at Victor, N. Y., dau. of ----- and Minerva (Dryer) Chatterdon, who lived at Lowell, Mich., when she was married. She died at Muskegon, 20 March 1868, and was buried there, 23 March 1868. He married (3d), 18 May 1870, at Grand Rapids, Frances Bennett, who was born in London, Eng., 16 Dec. 1840, dau. of John and Elizabeth (Lewis) Bennett. Her father, from Yorkshire, and her mother, from Wales, were living in the Province of Ontario, Canada, at the time of her marriage. He was living at Grand Rapids in Sept. 1874. He has been a wanderer since 1834; and says that he has lived in Mexico, South America, Australia, Canada, and every State in the American Union."

Abraham Johnson8 and Julia Ann (Morse) Whitney apparently had no children.

Abraham Johnson8 and Virginia Amanda (Chatterdon) Whitney apparently had no children.

Child of Abraham Johnson8 and Frances (Bennett) Whitney:

i. Willard J.9 Whitney, b. ca. 1877, MI.


The census records show several young people with the surname Whitney living in his family who seem unlikely or impossible to be his natural children. Possibly they were adopted or just foster-children. Only Willard is specifically called a son.


1856 1663 Benjamin Morse 51 M - Farmer $4500 $1200 New York Louisa " 53 F - " " A. J. Whiting 40 M - Master Carpenter $1200 $400 " " Julia " 26 F - " " Adelaide " 18 F - Domestic Michigan Attended school Helen " 12 F - " Attended school

Adelaide and Helen could not be his children by Julia, his first wife. Apparently they are not nieces, either. Their identities are not clear.

619 574 Whitney, Abraham J. 46 M W Blind Maker $100 Pennsylvania Male citizen over 21 -----, Frances 29 F W England Parents foreign born -----, Leroy 12 M W Michigan Attended school -----, Elizabeth S. 7 F W Ontario Mother foreign born, Attended school

If Leroy was his son, and b. ca. 1858, why wasn't he listed in the family in 1860? If Elizabeth was his daughter, b. ca. 1863, why was her mother foreign born?

Abraham WHITNEY 59 Self M M W NY Chair Maker NY PA Francess WHITNEY 39 Wife F M W ENG Keeping House ENG WELCH Willard J. WHITNEY 3 Son M S W NY ENG ENG George B. WRIGHT 21 SSon M S W CAN Chair Maker ENG ENG Lizzie S. WRIGHT 17 SDau F S W CAN ENG ENG

How the Wrights were step-children of Abraham Whitney is hard to understand. Lizzie S. Wright could be the same as Elizabeth S. Whitney from the 1870 Census.


Copyright © 2006, 2009, Robert L. Ward and the Whitney Research Group