Family:Whitney, Joseph Botsford (1849-1933)

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John1), son of James Wheeler8 and Anna Maria (Lewis) Whitney, was born 3 Sep 1849, LeRoy, NY, and died 4 Apr 1933, New York, NY.

He married, 1874, Martha Hazeltine Cummings, of Honesdale, PA, daughter of Arthur Aaron and Harriet (Squires) Cummings. She was born 29 Sep 1852, PA, and died 5 Jul 1932, Manhattan, NY.[1] She was buried in Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY.

He graduated at the Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY.

Pelletreau says:[2]

"Joseph Botsford Whitney, second child and only son of James Wheeler Whitney and Anne Maria (Lewis) Whitney, was born at Le Roy, New York, September 3, 1849. He came with his parents to Brooklyn in early childhood, where he has since continued to reside. He was educated at the Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute, taking the scientific course of study, intending to follow the profession of a civil engineer, but afterward decided on a business career. He entered his father's firm in New York city and finally succeeded to the business. Later he turned his attention to the manufacture of silk goods and subsequently to improved methods of manufacture combined with economic features. He invented an improved creel, by means of which are made more perfect warps, and by the same process reducing the cost of manufacture. His next and most important improvement was a warp stop-motion for looms, so finely adjusted as to be suitable for silk, the most delicate of fabrics. In this not only the quality of the fabric was improved but the cost of production was decreased, as it had been in the previous instance. A third improvement was for the purpose of equalizing the tension on the threads in the process of quilling on a silk quilling frame. By means of these and other improvements Mr. Whitney advanced his manufactures to a high degree of perfection, being the first manufacturer in America to make goods equal to those of the finest foreign looms, and although he had studied and perfected himself for the profession of a civil engineer he has succeeded in carrying the art of silk manufacturing to a higher state of perfection than any other manufacturer of his day in this country by putting into practice in this line the principles of thoroughness and exactness of his scientific course of training. His manufactory, located at Paterson, New Jersey, of which he is the sole owner, is known as the Brilliant Silk Manufacturing Company.
"The name of Whitney will ever be associated with industrial improvements through Eli Whitney, the inventor of the cotton gin, which invention gave impetus to the cultivation of cotton, making it for the last half century the world's greatest staple for fabric manufacture. We are glad to be able to record the fact that this same ability to advance the requirements
J. B. Whitney
"in another branch of industry finds expression through Joseph B. Whitney, whose important inventions are aiding in the onward march of our great nation toward the industrial supremacy of the world.
"Mr. Whitney has been too busy developing his various improvements to give special attention to public affairs. He married Martha Hazeltine Cummings, of Honesdale, Pennsylvania, daughter of Aaron Cummings, of that place. Three children are the issue of this marriage: Isabel Lydia; Hazeltine; and Arthur Aaron, who died in infancy."

Children of Joseph Botsford9 and Martha Hazeltine (Cummings) Whitney:

i. Isabel Lydia10 Whitney, b. Mar 1880, NY; d. 2 Feb 1962, NY; noted water-colorist and pioneer woman fresco painter; unmarried.
ii. Hazeltine Whitney, b. ca. 1883, NY; d. aft 1946, then unmarried.
iii. Arthur Aaron Whitney, b. -----; d. in infancy.


Joseph WHITNEY 30 Self M M W NY Commission Merchant NY NY Martha WHITNEY 29 Wife F M W PA Keeping House NY PA Isabella WHITNEY 2 Dau F S W NY NY PA George CUSHMAN 60 Othe M S W RI Minister RI RI Celia COLLN 27 Othe F S W GERMANY Servant GER GER

James W. Whitney M 72 - U.S. C. Retired Marie do F 69 - " C. Joseph do M 42 - " C. Silk merchant Martha do F 40 - " C. Isabella do F 13 - " C. Marie Evansen F 24 - Norway A. Servant Hanna Johnston F 28 - Sweden A. "

59 145 Whitney, Joseph B. Head W M May 1850 59 mar 22 New York Connecticut Connecticut Silk Merchant, Owns free house -----, Martha Wife W F Apr 1853 47 mar 22 3ch 2liv Pennsylvania New York Pennsylvania -----, Isabel L. Dau W F Mch 1880 20 sgl New York New York Pennsylvania At school ----, Hazeltine Dau W F Apr 1882 18 sgl New York New York Pennsylvania At school Cooper, Mildred Niec W F May 1888 12 sgl Omaha Pennsylvania Pennsylvania At school Carroll, Jane Srvt W F Apr 1858 42 sgl Wisconsin Ireland Ireland Domestic Fairlong, Mary Srvt W F Jan 1858 42 sgl Connecticut Ireland Ireland Domestic

  • 1910, 138 Second Place, Brooklyn Ward 10, Kings Co., NY.
  • 1915 State, 114 Remsen St., Brooklyn Ward 1, Kings Co., NY.
  • 1920: not found.
  • 1930, Washington, Washington Co., DC.


  • Census records.
  • Census records.

1.^  New York, New York City Municipal Deaths, 1795-1949, at

2.^  William S. Pelletreau, History of Long Island: from its earliest settlement to the present time (New York and Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1903), Volume III, pages 239-240.

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