Family:Whitney, William Clifford (1828-1907)

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William Clifford7 Whitney (John Godfrey6, Nathan5, Benjamin4, John3, Benjamin2, John1), son of John Godfrey6 and Mary (Allen) Whitney, was born 3 Jan 1828, Dexter, ME, and died 16 Jun 1907, Cawker City, KS. He was buried in Prairis Grove Cemetery, Cawker City, KS.[1]

He married, 5 Jan 1851, Boston, MA, Anna Eliza Holmes, daughter of Fisher and Freedom Lois (Buell) Holmes.[2] She was born 30 Aug 1825, Barre, VT, and died 8 May 1916. He resided Cawker, KS.

William was the mayor of Cawker, KS, having been elected on five separate occasions. He was a Civil War veteran, having served in both the 1st and 2nd IL Light Artillery, as well as the 7th U.S.C. Heavy Artillery. Was appointed Colonel of the 2nd Freedman Milita, District of West Tennesse until regiment disbanded in July of 1865.

In 1871, he moved with his family to Waconda, KS, where he established a hotel. Here he lost a barn and the stock in the barn when it was struck by fire. His daughter, Addie, also died here in 1872 as well as his son, Arthur, who died in July of 1886.

In 1872, William left Waconda for Crawker where he opened the Whitney Hotel, "the best hotel west of St. Louis." He served Crawker in a many capacities -as Mayor, Justice of the Peace, Commissioner, Councilman, Census enumerator, Police Judge and Postmaster.

A large man - standing 6' -3" and weighing between 260 and 300 pounds, William had a commanding presence. He was known to be friendly, generous and hospitable. His death occurred June 20, 1907 at 8 a.m., most likely from the effects of gangrene which had set in on April 1, 1907. He had planned his funeral down to the last detail, leaving very specific insructions, going so far as to building his own casket.

I believe William to be the son of John and Mary Allen Whitney. He had one brother, Lewelling (Lewellyn), one grandson William C. Whitney and a nephew, Bert (son of Lewelling, the oldest child of John and Mary.)

His uncle, William Allen, wrote to Mary in 1831 ... "If you are going to raise an army of boys (which appears highly probably) I beg you will give me the privilege of appointing for their General that unaccountable prodigy that ungovernable Clifford! he is a real Bonaparte in miniature! and I expect to see him some day, sword in hand, at the head of his thousands."

Children of William Clifford7 and Anna Eliza (Holmes) Whitney:

i. Arthur C.8 Whitney, b. 13 Jun 1853, Winnebago Co., IL; m. Lizzie Whitford.
ii. Laura Adelaide Whitney, b. 11 Jan 1859, Boston, MA.[3], d. 12 Sep 1872, Waconda, KS, aged 13 years 8 months; bur. Prairis Grove Cemetery, Cawker City, KS.[4]


982 1637 Jos. J. Bragdon 39 M - Teamster Maine Sarah G. " 31 F - N.Y. Susan E. " 10 " - Mass. Attended school Byron J. Bragdon 7 M - Mass. Attended school Sarah A. " 3 F - do Sarah Foster 64 " - do Jane Herren 17 " - Domestic N.S. Wm. C. Whitney 24 M - Teamster Maine Oliver Hitchings 22 " - do do

1000 1292 William C. Whitney 33 M - Driver $1000 $100 Maine Ada E. " 32 F - Vermont Arthur C. " 7 M - Illinois Attended school Laura A. " 1 F - Massachusetts 1293 Walter T. Lovejoy 27 M - Driver $600 $400 Maine Emily J. " 27 F - " Henry W. " 2 M - " Henry S. Billings 26 M - Driver " Samuel L. Wilkins 45 M - Carpenter " Roxana A. Tarbell 25 F - Dress Maker "

58 61 Whitney, John G. 72 M W Carpenter $7500 $1000 Maine Male citizen over 21 -----, Mary 66 F W Keeping House Maine -----, Wm. 42 M W Farmer Maine Male citizen over 21 -----, Anna 44 F W Keeping House Vermont -----, Arthur 17 M W Ill. Attended school -----, Addie 11 F W Mass. Attended school

W. C. WHITNEY 52 Self M M W ME Hotel Keeper ME ME Anna WHITNEY 48 Wife F M W VT Landlady VT VT Arthur WHITNEY 27 Son M M W IL Bus Driver ME VT Lizzie WHITNEY 26 DauL F M W ENG Keeping House ENG ENG Addie WHITNEY 2 GDau F S W KS IL ENG John G. WHITNEY 82 Fath M M W ME ME ME Mary WHITNEY 76 Moth F M W ME ME ME Ackley SMITH 29 Oth M S W CA Cook In Hotel OH PA

1 1 Whitney, Wm. C. Head W M Jan 1828 72 mar 50 Maine Maine Main Police judge, Owns free house -----, Anna E. Wife W F Ayg 1825 74 mar 50 2ch 0liv Vermont Massachusetts Massachusetts

  • 1905 State Census, Cawker, Mitchell Co., KS.


  • Census records.

1.^  Find A Grave Memorial #70859238, Col. William Clifford Whitney.

2.^  "Massachusetts Vital Records, 1841–1910," from original records held by the Massachusetts Archives. Online database: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2004; volume 56, page 3.

3.^  "Massachusetts Vital Records, 1841–1910," from original records held by the Massachusetts Archives. Online database: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2004; volume 125, page 37.

4.^  Find A Grave Memorial #36163673, Laura Adelaide "Addie" Whitney.

Copyright © 2011, 2012, 2014, 2019, Robert L. Ward, Kenneth L. Whitney, and the Whitney Research Group.

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