Family:Whitney, Elijah (c1761-a1840)

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Elijah's Locations

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Elijah Whitney, ([probably] Francis, [perhaps] Joshua3, David2, Samuel1), parentage unproven, but probably son of Francis and Rachel (-----) Whitney,[1] was born circa 1760 or 1761,[2] Virginia, and died after 1832.

He married firstly, bef 5 Jul 1778, Washington Co., VA, Obedience -----.[3] She died before 1804.

He married secondly, 23 Aug 1804, Garrard Co., KY, Ailcy Childress.

He married thirdly, 3 Jul 1819, Christian Co., KY, Sally Curtis.[4]

Elijah Whitney first appears in court records in Washington Co., VA:

At a Court held for Washington Co. VA August 21st 1781 ... Commonwealth of Virginia against Thomas Gros ... it is the opinion of the Court that the said Gros be bound to his appearance to the next Grand Jury ... where upon he together with Frathias Wall and Elijh Whitney entered into and acknowledged their recongizance in the sum of 10,000 Pounds VIZ the said Gros in the sum of 5,000 Pounds and each of his securities in the sum of 2,500 Pounds. At Court held for Washington County Virginia Nov. 21st 1781 ... Thomas Gross for misprison ... the Jury returned verdict and assess damages 1000 Pounds and 10 days imprisonment.[5]

Elijah Whitney appears with Francis Whitney in the tax records of Washington County, VA.

1782 Washington County, VA, Elijah Whitney paid 11 tithes, no cattle, no horses.[6]

1783 Washington County, VA, Elijah Whitney paid one tithe.[7]

Elijah Whitney is found in Kentucky after 1803.

The following land grants were recorded for Christian Co., KY:[8]

2 Nov 1803 Whitney, Francis, 160 acres on the Little River
21 May 1804 Whitney, Elijah, 150 acres on the Little River
25 Mar 1805 Whitney, Elijah, 200 acres on Kelleys Creek
8 Jul 1818 Whitney, Elijah, 50 acres on the Little River

Children of Elijah and Obedience (-----) Whitney:

i. (probably) Hiram Whitney[9], b. 1785; d. 1842, KY.
ii. (son) Whitney, b. 1794-1800. This was perhaps Joseph Whitney.
iii. Elizabeth Whitney, b. bef. 1794; d. 28 Dec 1849, Wayne Co., IL; m. 1 Feb 1812, Christian Co., KY, Robert Rutledge Gaston, son of James and Catherine (Creighton) Gaston, b. 27 Jan 1792, Lancaster Co., SC, d. 12 Nov 1837, Wayne Co., IL.
iv. Mary "Polly" Whitney, b. 9 Aug 1798, VA; d. 22 Feb 1867, Panola Co., TX; m. 7 Aug 1816, Christian Co., KY, Frances Bird Bounds, son of Joseph and Mary (Bird) Bounds, b. 20 Feb 1797, NC, d. 25 Jan 1865, Panola Co., TX. They moved to Panola Co., TX about 1844/46.
v. (son) Whitney, b. 1800-1810.

Children of Elijah and Ailcy (Childress) Whitney, or possibly of Sally Curtis by a former husband, so step-children of Elijah:

vi. (daughter) Whitney, b. 1811-1820.
vii. (daughter) Whitney, b. 1811-1820.

The following Whitneys, married in Christian Co., KY, may have been his children:[10]

Patsy Whitney, m. 13 Apr 1813, Starling Bounds
Joseph Whitney, m. 11 Sep 1813, Rebecca Poe
Polly Whitney, m. 7 Aug 1817, Francis Bounds


Elijah Whitney testified in the affidavits of Russell Curtis and also John Harris that he was originally from Washington County, VA and was a neighbor to John Harris. He also moved to Garrard County, Kentucky the fall following John Harris' move there. He filled out an affidavit later for Russell Curtis that he was also acquainted with and a neigbor of Russell Curtis and did at one point live in Warren County, Kentucky before moving to Christian County, Kentucky.


  • 1782, Washington County, Virginia
  • 1790 Census for Virginia no longer exists.
  • 1800 Census for Virginia and Kentucky no longer exist.
  • 1810, Christian Co., KY: Elijah Whitney, 1 male over 45, 1 male 10-16, 1 male under 10, 2 females 10-16, 2 females under 10.
  • 1820, Trigg Co., KY: Elijah Whitney, 1 male over 45, 1 male 18-26, 1 male under 10, 1 female 26-45, 1 female 16-26, 2 females under 10, 2 people in agriculture,
  • 1830, Cadiz, Trigg Co., KY: Elijah Whitney, 1 male 60-70, 1 male 10-15, 1 male under 5, 1 female 30-40, 1 female 10-15, 2 females 5-10, 1 female under 5.


1.^  Elijah Whitney and Francis Whitney were both listed on early tax lists for Washington County, VA and both men were granted land in Christian County, KY.

2.^  If he was over 45 in 1810, then he must have been born before 1765. If he was at least 21 when taxed in 1782, then he must have been born before 1761. In 1830, he was listed as age 60-70, so he must have been born 1760-1770. Based upon all of this information, he is estimated to have been born circa 1760 or 1761.

3.^  Settlers-Upper Holston-Clinch Area Index to Gordon Aronhime Microfilm (MICRO 33.1-33.5).

4.^  Dodd, Jordan. Kentucky Marriages, 1802-1850 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 1997. Original data: Electronic transcription of marriage records held by the individual counties in Kentucky.

5.^  Summers, William Preston, Annals of Southwest Virginia 1746-1786, Vol. II, Page 1085.

6.^  Washington Co VA Personal Property Tax List 1782-1786 Page 167.

7.^  Washington County Virginia Taxables 1782-1787, Page 57.

8.^ Kentucky Land Grants [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 1997. Original data: Jillson, Willard Rouse. The Kentucky Land Grants. Vol. I-II. Louisville, KY, USA: Filson Club Publications, 1925.

9. ^  The proximity of Elijah and Hiram Whitney suggests a familial relationship, however, to date none has been proven.


Copyright © 2007, Tara Bellomy, Jeanne Neilon, and the Whitney Research Group.