Name: James Whitaker
Given Name: James
Birth: 19 Feb 1782 in Hopewell Furnace, Berks, Pennsylvania, USA 1 2
Death: 5 Apr 1875 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Ancestral File #: 1R3L-GSR
Military Service 3
Obituary of James Whitaker
Change Date: 30 Sep 2009 at 01:00:00
James Whitaker died at his residence, at the Southwest corner of 17th and Wallace Streets, in this city on the 5th in the 94th year of his life. he was born Feb 19th, 1782, near Coventry, in Chester County and was descended in the paternal line from a noted Saxon family in England, and in the maternal line from Abraham Opeen Graeff, one of the 13 original settlers of Germantown in 1683, and one of the four Germans who signed the historical first protest against slavery.
Seventy years ago, Mr Whitaker came to Philadelphia and commenced the manufacture of nails in Hartung's Alley, continuing the business afterwards at the corner of Old York Road and Fourth Street. In 1816 he and his brother Joseph leased a rolling mill at the Falls of Schuylkill, and in 1820 another [J & J Whitaker, manufacturer of stoves, springs, and nails in Phily according to Lynne M. Witte] near Wilmington, Delaware, and Gibraltar Forge, in the neighborhood of Reading. In 1826 he bought an interest in the Cumberland Iron and Nail Works at Bridgeton, NJ, and in 1827 an interest in the Iron Works at Phoenixville, PA. He moved to the latter place and remained there for several years as the managing partner of the firm of Reeves & Whitaker, now the Phoenix Company. In 1836 he removed to Reading, and for ten years was an active partner in the successive firms of Keim, Whitaker & Co. and Whitaker, Seyfert and McManus, now Seyfert, McManus & Co. In 1846 he returned to Philadelphia, withdrawing to some extent from active business life, but leaving considerable capital invested in the firm of Whitaker & Stevens, at the Ark wright Cotton Mills in Many. A pioneer in the iron trade, his associates one after another passed away until he alone remained as the solitary representative of an era now being rapidly enveloped in oblivion.
For many years he has been without doubt the oldest of the Iron Maters of Pennsylvania. Endowed with physical and mental vigor, and possessing unusual energy and force of character, he was well fitted to fight the battles of life with success. His reputation for integrity was without smirch or stain.
In 1814, when the British threatened an attack upon this city, he joined a military company, and assisted in throwing up entrenchment at Marcus Hook. Later in life he became a member of the Society of Friends, and was connected with the Green Street Nick Site Meeting. His descendants numbered 15 children, 61 grandchildren, 17 great grandchildren, and 2 great great grandchildren.
The above was contributed by Samuel Pennybaker, Philadelphia, PA, later Governor of Pennsylvania.
(Research):FamilySearch.org list death date as 5 Apr 1870
War of 1812
Father: Joseph Musgrave Whitaker b: 25 Aug 1755 in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
Mother: Sarah Updegrove b: 1759 in Coventry, Chester Co., Pennsylvania, USA
- Charles Whitaker
- Title: OneWorldTree
family trees submitted by Ancestry members "stitched" together with family trees and historical records from other sources.
Title: Ancestral File (Charlesworth)
Publication: Submitter: James M Charlesworth, Jr
PO Box 190 1631 Harvey St SE
Jefferson, OR 973522
- Title: Joseph Whitaker 1789-1870 The Life and Times of a Notable Pensylvania Ironmaster
Author: Miriam Clegg
- Title: Lynne M. Witte
60 West Cherry Lane
Limerick, PA 19468