Christian Isaac Whitten

Chris Whitten

Privacy Level: Private with Public Biography and Family Tree (Yellow)
Mr. Chris I. Whitten
Born 1970's.
Brother of [private brother (1960's - unknown)]
Father of [private daughter (2000's - unknown)]
Profile manager: Chris Whitten private message [send private message]
Account confirmed 26 July 2012 | Chris's 49123 contributions | 2405 thank-yous received
14 July 2016
13:38: Chris Whitten deleted a message from Anthony Clancy on the page for Chris Whitten. [Thank Chris for this]
This page has been accessed 60,299 times.
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Categories: WikiTree Team | Fitchburg, Massachusetts.

Chris is the founder and CEO of this website, WikiTree. Previous to this he created WikiAnswers (aka "FAQ Farm", now, 2001-2007) and Free-Market.Net (1995-2001).

You can e-mail chris@ ( However, if you have questions, please first see How_to_use_WikiTree and the WikiTree Help section. If you don't quickly find your answer there, post on our Genealogist-to-Genealogist (G2G) Forum. If it's a question that needs to be private contact the WikiTree Team at


Chris grew up in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, with his mother Donna and brother Ted. His father Ted and step-mother Vicki were in the nearby town of Ashby.

In 1989 he graduated from Fitchburg High School and started at Lyndon State College in the beautiful Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. After two years in the small business program at Lyndon he transferred to New York University. He graduated from NYU with a degree in economics in 1993.

After college he stayed in New York City and worked as the managing editor of a small mail order book catalog named Laissez Faire Books. Before this was the only source for many unusual books on libertarian philosophy and free-market economics. In 1994, he started experimenting with the Internet to sell books for Laissez Faire. The e-mail list he created there was one of the first of its kind.

In 1995 Chris left his job to create a libertarian community and networking site called Free-Market.Net: The Freedom Network (FMN). This site has been called "the mother of all libertarian websites" for its early work in promoting usage of the Internet among free-market organizations and individuals.

In 1997 he created a non-profit organization in Chicago called The Henry Hazlitt Foundation to be a home for FMN and its sister sites including, and Bureaucrash. The foundation grew to employ five people full-time and more than a dozen people part-time.

In 2000 Chris met Megan McClellan who was finishing her math degree at the University of Chicago.

The next year, Chris left his non-profit work to be more entrepreneurial again. And to pay off his student loans. This led to the creation of FAQ Farm in 2002, which later became WikiAnswers and then

In 2004 Chris and Megan moved back from Chicago to New York City. The next year, in 2005, Megan was offered a job in London and they took that opportunity to see Europe.

In 2006 Chris and Megan returned from England. They bought a home in northern Westchester County, NY.

Late that year Chris sold his WikiAnswers business. During 2007 he worked with to integrate the site into their company. In both 2007 and 2008 WikiAnswers was the fastest growing site among the largest US websites. It became a top 25 US website with millions of visitors per day.

In 2008 Chris began work on this site, WikiTree, and has been working on it full-time ever since.


  • Paternal relationship is confirmed with 23andMe test matches between Chris and his father Ted showing "47.6% DNA shared across 22 segments" according to 23andMe.
  • Paternal relationship is also confirmed through Y-chromosome DNA testing. Keith Whitten Sr. and Chris Whitten match on 37 out of 37 markers, as reported by Family Tree DNA. This confirms their direct paternal lines back to their MRCA Richard Whitten.
  • Maternal relationship is confirmed with AncestryDNA test matches between Chris and both a grandchild ("G.C.") and great-grandchild of Havelock P. Howes. They are a second cousin once removed and a third cousin to Chris. This matches the predicted relationships reported by AncestryDNA: 3rd - 4th cousins, Confidence: Extremely High and 4th - 6th cousins, Confidence: High.

More: Family Tree & Genealogy Tools

Only the Trusted List can access the following:
  • Chris's formal name
  • full middle name (I.)
  • e-mail address
  • exact birthdate
  • birth location
  • personal memories about Chris (1)
  • images (368)
  • private siblings' names
  • private children's names (1)
  • spouse's name and marriage information
For access to Chris Whitten's full information you must be on Chris's Trusted List. Please login. See the Contact section of the Tree & Tools page.

Sponsored by MyHeritage

Followed Tags
Chris is a Wiki Genealogist following these tags:
I feel strongly that DNA testing is a key component of our single family tree project. If you have suggestions for improving DNA integration on WikiTree please post in G2G.
Some members use this tag in G2G to suggest improvements; it's not official.
Legge is my great grand-grandmother's name. The family is from Nova Scotia. I'd be interested in participating in a one name study if anyone starts one.
Oldford is my maternal grandmother's name. Her parents were from Newfoundland. I'd be interested in participating in a one name study if anyone starts one. Let me know!
Storrs is my great grand-grandmother's name. The family is from Connecticut. I'd be interested in participating in a one name study if anyone starts one.
My Whitten ancestors are from Maine. I think most New England Whittens are related, but southern Whittens may not be.
I do like to hear the nice things people say. :-)
If you're a programmer please join our apps project. I believe that empowering independent developers is essential to the future growth of WikiTree.

DNA Tested
Chris Whitten's DNA has been tested for genealogical purposes. It may be possible to confirm family relationships by comparing test results with Chris or other carriers of his ancestors' Y-chromosome or mitochondrial DNA. Y-chromosome DNA test-takers in his direct paternal line on WikiTree: Mitochondrial DNA test-takers in the direct maternal line:
  • Chris Whitten: Family Tree DNA mtDNA Test HVR1, haplogroup U5, Mitosearch D3D3Z, FTDNA kit #124309
It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with Chris:

Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Family Tree DNA.


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  • Private Messages: Send a private message to Chris. (Best for comments to Chris that need to be private.)
  • Public Comments: Login to post. (Best for messages to or about Chris that can be public. Limit 20 per day.)

On July 14, 2016 at 16:43GMT Anthony Clancy wrote:


Havelock was the father of Sarah Josephine (1907-1990) who was married to my 2nd great uncle Joseph Roger Enos (1900-1980).

Regards, Anthony

On July 12, 2016 at 00:07GMT Anonymous Christiansen wrote:

Thank you very much for fixing the Cunningham-1182 problem. I don't have a clue how it even happened. I appreciate the help.

On June 30, 2016 at 16:47GMT Roberta Burnett wrote:

Chris, I can get back to the feed being blocked problem later today, but I just x'd the thank you to you, and it seemed to be sent in proper fashion. Maybe the whole thing was momentary. AND because all of that was yesterday, my memory of that sequence issue is foggy. (Feeling ineffectual, oh well. It happens,)

On June 29, 2016 at 11:21GMT James LaLone wrote:

Chris I posted this on G2G and the Facebook page, your name was mentioned so maybe you can answer my question, thanks. - I posted this on G2G and got a partial answer that the site is funded by ads (for those who are not signed in), but what about it being free forever (and available) - "I am curious, how can this all be free? There must be costs somewhere. Some groups are free but supported by advertising. The reason for this question is that Genforum was free (at least parts) as is RootsWeb. However both were purchased by Ancestry. Genforum no longer exists as an active group and RootsWeb existence is discussed sometimes as being in peril. There is the statement that this site is free forever. Does someone own the site? and if they die who inherits it and will that person want to continue it? What happens when the technology changes, will WikiTree have to pay for updates? Again what assurance that this site will continue to exist? The learning curve on this is very high (one reason I started a support group in my area) and it will take a long time to get things right. I am 70 so don't have a lot of time left, so by the time I get things perfect, how do I know the info will be available for my relatives? Questions, questions!!" Thanks.

On June 24, 2016 at 13:00GMT Summer Orman wrote:

Thanks! I wish I could take credit for it, but it was Eowyn's fabulous idea. I'm just the Mojo messenger.  :D

On June 5, 2016 at 11:26GMT Susan Blazek wrote:

Hi Chris, I recently added more of my New England Whitten ancestors from Industry, Maine. Thought you might be interested.

On May 27, 2016 at 20:41GMT Summer Orman wrote:

Hey Chris, I almost forgot... "Chris and Summer are 10th cousins twice removed," through the Sears family.  :D

On April 28, 2016 at 17:45GMT Summer Orman wrote:

Thanks, Chris! We're off to a good start for sure. We're rockin' and rollin'!

On April 28, 2016 at 15:15GMT Susan Blazek wrote:

Hi Chris, yes, my grandmother Natalie E Whitten grew up in Lynn or Swampscott MA... her father was Harry Ellsworth Whitten, and her mother was Bessie Louise (Durgin) Whitten. So yes, we are probably related somewhere in there.

On April 27, 2016 at 14:23GMT Leake Little wrote:

I'm not selling BigY - however Next Generation Sequencing is the best discovery testing method for the Y chromosome in that it clearly identifies specific paternal family lines (surname) and it brings your DNA results into the genealogical time frame of the last 200-300 years.

more comments

Queen Elizabeth II Chris is 21 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 42 degrees from Anne Frank, 23 degrees from AJ Jacobs, 33 degrees from Neil deGrasse Tyson and 21 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II of the Commonwealth Realms on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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