1. NATHANIEL WHITING, Dedham, had a grant of land in Lynn, 1638, but was of Dedham 1641, freeman, 18 May 1642, married 4 March [should show November], 1643, HANNAH, eldest daughter of John DWIGHT of the same. "I suppose he liv. in that part which became Medfield." had:
i. NATHANIEL WHITING, b 7, bp 29 Sep 1644; of Medfield, CT, freeman 1672; m HANNAH -?-; had:
i. Jonathan Whiting, b 9 Oct 1677
"and prob had other ch. at M. for the name spread much in that vicinage"
ii. JOHN WHITING, b 29 Sep, bp 11 Oct 1646, prob d soon
iii. JOHN WHITING, next yr, d soon
iv. another son (poss SAMUEL) WHITING, b 20 Nov, 30 Dec 1649
v. HANNAH WHITING, b 17, bp 22 Feb 1652
vi. TIMOTHY WHITING, b 5 Jan 1653
vii. MARY WHITING, 8 July 1656, d soon
viii. MARY WHITING, b 12, bp 24 Oct 1658
ix. SARAH WHITING, b 3 Dec 1660
x. ABIGAIL WHITING, b 7 Jun 1663
* xi. JOHN WHITING, [the 3rd so named] b 19, bp 23 Jul 1665; d 1732; m MARY BILLINGS
xii. JONATHAN WHITING, b 9, bp 20 Oct 1667; m RACHAEL THROP; had:
i. Nathaniel Whiting, m Hannah Lyons
and perhaps more; Goodwin adds JUDAH, b 20 Mar 1670; and ANN, 25 Feb 1672
↑ A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, Showing Three Generations of Those Who Came Before May, 1692, on the Basis of Farmer's Register, by James Savage. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1862, IV, p. 519
Our ancester is first mentioned in theis country in the Salem, MA quarterly court file, in the return made by the proprietors clerk of the number of acres belonging to each of the landholders al Lynn, MA in 1638: Nathaniell Whiteinge 10 (acres). He is believes to have gone with Rev. Samuel Whiting of lynn in a636In Lewis' History of Lynn, the name appears as Whiteridge, but the correct spelling has been given by later writers.
He is next mentioned on the records of the First Church at Dedham, MA: Nathaniel Whiting was admitted into ye Church 30th 5m 1641. He was granted the privileges of a freeman Mat 18, 1642.
He was by occupation a miller and the first to operate a corn mill in Dedham, MA.
The records do not give us the date of the completion of the dam and mill, but a committee was appointed on July 14, 1641 to lay out a a cartway to our watermill.
A grant of 8 acres was made to John Elderkin and Nathaniel Whiting jointly on the south side of the mill for a house lot. There is no date for this grant but the next entries:
John Elderkin conveyed to Nathaniel Whiteings his half as appears by a deed dated thee 22 of the 9th month 1642.
In 29th of ye 7th month 1649n, Nathaniel Whiting obtained the other half of the mill and privileges.
The mill privilege was retained in the hands of the Whiting family until 1823, when the heirs of Hezekiah Whiting sold it to Jabez Chickering.
The printed records of the Town of Dedham, MA contain many entries concerning Nathaniel Whiting, the mill and his tax rates town, county and school purposes, his grants of land and public services.
On January 15, 1862-3 the very day of his death, the Town empowered the selectmen to make the following agreement with Nathaniel Whiting and James Draper, Sr. (Printed records Townof Dedham v:140)
He died at Dedham 14: 11 mo, 1682. His age is notgiven. The original of his will and inventory are missing from the files and the following copies are taken from Suffolk County Probate records, VI: 408 and IX: 117:
He married at Dedham 4th 9 mo, 1643 Hannah Dwight, daughter of Joh and Hannah Dwight of Dedham, MA. She died in Dedham, MA November 4, 1714, age 89.
She was therfore born about 1625. She survived him over 30 years and appears to have managed his business and briought up their large family with rare discretion.
His will is recorded in the Suffolk Registry of Probate, XVIII: 396.
Children, all born in Dedham. MA:
Nathaniel b. 7/26/1644 (9/7/1644?; m. Dedham, MA 3/29/1664 Joanna Gay b. 3/23/1645; daughter of John and Joanna Gay
John b. 9/28/1646; d. x/26/1646
John b. 9/3/1647; d. 7/25/1856
Samuel b. 10/20/1649
Hannah b. 12/17/1651; d. Wrentham, MA 6/14/1740
Timothy b.11/5/1653; d. Dedham, MA 12/26/1728; m. Sarah Bullard
Mary b. 5/8/1656;d. 8/29/1656
Mary b. 4/12/1658; Probably died young
Sarah b. 4/12/1660; d. Dedham, MA 3/22/1732; m. about 1685 Nathaniel Farrington(b. 8/9/1656; d. 5/8/1721)
Abigail b. 6/7/1663; d. Roxbury, MA 10/25/1721; m. Roxbury, MA 2/18/1680-1, James Draper
John b. 7/19/1665; m. 12/4/1688 Mary Billings; d. 1/4/1728 of Wrenthham, MA where he resided' d. 1732 (from a fragmentary account of some of his decendents, see Goodwin's Genealogical notes pp 46-7.)
Jonathan b. 10/9/1667 (recorded also at Roxbury)m. Rachel Thorp. They had a son Nathaniel whomarried Hannah Lyons whose son Nathaniel, Jr. was a near progenitor of the whitins of Whitinsville, a flourishing manufacturing town founded by them.
Judah (or Judith) b. 3/30/1670; d. Dedham 2/19/1746-7; m. 1st Barachiah Lewis; m. 2nd Dedham, 3/16/1714, Joseph Ellis
Anna b. 11/25/1672; d. Dedham, MA 3/9/1749; m. 1st John Eaton; m. 2nd Dedham John Lewis 4/4/1700; m. 3rd Dorchester, MA 8/11/1725 James Herring of Roxbury, MA
The Whiting Family in Dedham
By Eleanor Palma
When Nathaniel Whiting arrived in Dedham in 1641, it was the beginning of a one hundred eighty-two year relationship of the Whiting family with the town of Dedham and the mills. He originally was given a site and privileges to grind corn on what was called Mother Brook, near the site of the Old Boston Envelope Company on Maverick Street. When a new corn mill was erected above the mill of Nathaniel Whiting in 1664 by Ezra Morse, it began a series of complaints to the town by Nathaniel of flooding damage to his mill. Some contentious years followed with accusations on both sides as well as law suits until Whiting agreed to abide by the town’s decisions.
Nathaniel Whiting had been born in England about 1609. He was deeded ten acres of land in Lynn, Massachusetts in 1638. Subsequently he moved to Dedham, and on November 4, 1643, he married Hannah Dwight, the daughter of John Dwight, an upstanding member of the community. Over the years, fourteen children were born, ten of whom lived to maturity. Nathaniel Whiting was a prosperous man and owned land not only in Dedham but also in Roxbury and Wrentham. Shortly before his death in 1683, Nathaniel and James Draper received the third mill privilege upon Mother Brook to build a fulling mill, and the descendents of Nathaniel Whiting held this mill privilege for over one hundred eighty years.
Throughout the years, the descendents of Nathaniel Whiting continued to be an integral part of the town of Dedham. Calvin Whiting, the son of Isaac and Rebecca Fisher Whiting, was born in 1762 and married Elizabeth Fuller. Calvin was a merchant and an inventor. He formed a partnership with Eli Parsons, tinsmith, for the manufacture of tin ware and sold it in his store at what was called “Connecticut Corner.” Their first machine patent for tin ware manufacture dates to 1806 and was granted to Whiting and Parsons. Calvin Whiting was also authorized by an Act of the Legislature to bring water in pine logs from a large spring in Federal Hill to residents in the Village in 1797.
Calvin was an inventive genius and invented much of the wool carding machinery for the Whiting mills. He received a U.S. patent on February 1, 1814 for a loom for warping or mounting the warp of the yarn bean in a wool mill. The original copy of the patent is signed by President James Madison with the official raised seal. Calvin was also a civic minded individual and served a total of fourteen years as a selectman in the town as well as being licensed as a Justice of the Peace.
A series of journals authored by Isaac Whiting, the son of Moses and Sarah Gay Whiting who was born in 1776, gives much insight into the early nineteenth century. What began as work journals turned into commentaries about family affairs and aspects of daily life in a busy community. For example: “March 18. 1823 Mr. Holis Perry came to work for me on trial for 6 or 7 months and if he suits me, am to give 20 dollars per month. He finding his own board, washing and mending.” “Self attended annual meeting of Horse Thief Society at Gregg’s Tavern.” “August 3, 1826 Self with Lemuel Whiting went to Mr. Birds in order to do something about settling for his flowing the water upon the gristmill.” Almost one hundred fifty years after Nathaniel Whiting complained about flooding at his mill, the argument continues.
Much of the genealogy information present in the Society’s archives was garnered by Caroline Whiting. Caroline, the oldest daughter of John and Lucinda French Whiting, was born in Dedham in 1810. She had been a schoolteacher in several towns in Rhode Island and worked for a time as an assistant teacher at the Academy at Kingston in Kingston, Rhode Island. For several years, about 1835, she taught a private school in her own home. In 1839, she was the Preceptress at Lawrence Academy in Groton, Massachusetts. She had many interests in addition to genealogy and kept careful journals of her day-to-day affairs. It is through her diligence that much of the family’s lineage is preserved.
William Whiting, the son of Lemuel and Mary Gay Whiting who was born in 1830, was the last Whiting to own a mill. The mills had changed over time, and much of the family land had been sold. About 1871, Charles Sanderson began laying out the old Whiting Farm as Oakdale. The land was divided into house lots and only the name of Whiting Avenue remains.
[There is a painting by Charles Mills in the furniture room at the Society showing the Whiting mills.]