Another Bay Area Whipple Exit

Two years ago, the post entitled “Who Is Willard Whipple?” referred to the Whipple Avenue exit on U.S. Highway 101 south of San Francisco, on the west side of San Francisco Bay. Numbered 409, the led to Redwood City in San Mateo County.

Further study found another Whipple exit, across San Francisco Bay from Whipple Avenue. On the east side of the Bay, Interstate 880’s Whipple Road exit 24 leads to Union City.

Union City exit to Whipple Road on I-880

Because of its proximity to Redwood City (across the Bay), I initially imagined that Whipple Road might have been named after Willard Whipple.

It turns out that Whipple Road was named after three brothers who farmed on the Union City (east) side of the Bay:

The three were among the 13 children of Samuel  Whipple and Phoebe Cleveland, both of whom were born in Duanesburg, Schenectady County, New York. Unlike the brothers Willard and Eli from Redwood City (who descended from Captain John Whipple of Providence, Rhode Island), Samuel descended from Matthew Whipple (brother of John) who migrated from Bocking, England, to Ipswich, Massachusetts in 1838.

John Cleveland Whipple and Edwin Whipple lived out their lives in California.  (The San Francisco Chronicle, for example, reported John’s death date as 28 Aug 1905.) Their brother William married in San Francisco county, then returned to New York, where he died.

John Adams Whipple, Photographic Pioneer

I was recently made aware of a page at the Historic Camera web site about John Adams Whipple (1822-1891) who pioneered photography in America during the 19th Century. He was the “first in the United States to take up the manufacture of chemicals that were used in the daguerreotype process.” He became the “most successful portrait photographer in Boston, with buildings and historical monuments his specialty.”

We hope you enjoy reading about John.


Who’s your daddy? Don’t ask a DNA test

Mater certissima est – the mother is always certain.

The Facebook group of the Guild of One-Name Studies posted a link to an article by Nara Milanich entitled “Who’s your daddy? Don’t ask a DNA test.” It raises interesting questions about parentage. What is a father? Is biology the only way of determining who someone’s father is?

How many of the fathers listed in the Whipple One-Name Study database ( are biological?

What do you think? Take a look at


A Whipple Christmas in 1606

© By Blaine Whipple

By the time of Amy‘s birth in 1606, the Matthew Whipple, Sr. family should have been able to celebrate Christmas in grand style. The citizens of Bocking and Braintree joyously celebrated the birth of Jesus. The inns, taverns, and alehouses were wreathed with Christmas greenery and within those warm, noisy, crowded places, good beer and ale and all the best wines were served. All houses from leading citizens to the lowly rat-catcher were open to hospitality. Few if any went hungry, including prisoners who received baskets of good things to eat and drink.
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Commodore Whipple vs. the Ohio River

One of my relatives recently recommended a new book by David McCullough entitled The Pioneers: The Heroic Story of the Settlers Who Brought the American Ideal. (See the book at

On page 136 of the book, the author describes the difficulties of navigating the Ohio River from Pittsburgh to the Mississippi River. The “Falls” or “Rapids” at Louisville, Kentucky, were a dangerous two-mile stretch of whitewater rapids where the water level cascaded downward, ending up 26 feet lower. Experienced pilots were able to routinely guide smaller craft safely through the Falls.
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Who Is John William Whipple, M.D., of Chile?

Twenty-two years ago in March 1997 (barely two months after the domain was “purchased,” and before the Whipple Website existed), I received an email from Oscar Eduardo Whipple Ascui of Chile, telling of his ancestor John William Whipple, who emigrated from the U.S. to Chile in “about 1850.” I added John to my PAF database that I eventually used to create what is now the Whipple Database. A few years later he was among the initial Whipples to end up on the newly created Disconnected Whipples page. He has remained in the database unchanged since March 1997—until today.
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Our Visit to St. Mary’s Church, Bocking, England

By Weldon Whipple
As I was going through some old photos yesterday, I found a few that I took while visiting my daughter in England in August 2005. At the time I had realized that I am not a descendant of the Bocking/Ipswich Whipples, so I wasn’t particularly motivated to go see Bocking. Having a spare day, we decided to look for Bocking and St. Mary’s Church. (I am the Whipple Website’s Webmaster, after all, and I had already decided to accept all Whipples in the Whipple Genweb.)
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Seeking the Origins of Captain John Whipple of Dorchester MA/Providence RI

SUMMARY: This post explores the possibility that young John Whipple of Dorchester, Massachusetts, and (later) Providence, Rhode Island, might be the same person as John Whaple or Whaples, who was baptized on 13 Dec 1618 at St. Mary and St. Lawrence Church in Great Waltham, Essex, England. (Great Waltham is about 10 miles — a 21-minute drive by car — from Bocking, Essex, England.)

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Battery Amiel Whipple on Fort Standish, Lovell’s Island, Plymouth County, Massachusetts

Recently Mark Whipple sent an email with two links to pages about locations in Boston Harbor. One of the links describes Battery Amiel Whipple, located on Lovell’s Island. (See Amiel’s page in the Whipple Website for more information about Major General Amiel Weeks Whipple. He died from wounds received May 4, 1873 at the Battle of Chancellorsville, Virginia.)
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Thomas Whipple of Bishops Stortford Mentioned by Blaine Whipple

Today as I was trying to answer an email question, I stumbled (again) across Appendix One (pp. 958-1015) in the first volume of Blaine Whipple’s monumental 4-volume work entitled 15 Generations of Whipples: Descendants of Matthew Whipple of Ipswich, Massachusetts, Abt 1590-1647 (Baltimore, MD: Gateway Press, 2007, ISBN 978-0-9801022-0-8 [volume 1 only]; ISBN 978-09801022-4-6 [4-volume set]).  While thumbing through its pages, page 969 caught my eye:
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A.B.C. Whipple, 1918-2013

Addison Beecher Colvin “Cal” Whipple, war correspondent who became a Washington reporter for Life magazine in 1943, died on St. Patrick’s Day. Cal was responsible for publishing a controversial “Picture of the Week” in Life in 1943, next to an editorial about the reality of World War II. “War Bond sales skyrocketed; and the [government’s] censorship rule was abolished.”
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Frank Whipple: Modern British Hero

Frank Whipple, East [London] End legend, passed away on Wednesday, August 24, 2011, at the age of 103. He died at the Royal London hospital. He was known in East London as a “campaigner, football fanatic and devoted family man.” He was admired as the the U.K.’s oldest carer [caregiver] because of his dedication in taking care of his daughter Peggy, “born with severe special needs.” Read the entire article in the East London Advertiser.
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Amiel Weeks Whipple, Transcontinental Railroads & Route 66

While checking Facebook on my iPhone, I ran across an article published as part of Arizona’s celebration of its statehood centennial this year: Arizona Centennial: The Making of a State – Whipple blazed route for transcontinental railroad. (Recall that he was mortally wounded during the U.S. Civil War while defending Washington, D.C. If you’ve spent much time on the Whipple Website, you will also know that Fort Myer–now in Arlington Cemetery, Virginia–was named Fort Whipple from the 1860s until 1881, in his honor.)
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Whipple Cave, Nevada

Blaine Whipple reports a blogger who has chronicled his experiences at Whipple Cave in the Egan Mountains of Nevada. I haven’t had time to research the cave, but I can’t help but wonder if the cave’s name might have something to do with Amiel Weeks Whipple, the military engineer and explorer who (among other things) led an 1853 expedition in search for a railroad route near the 35th parallel of latitude to the Pacific Ocean.
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Flag Day

When I realized that today is Flag Day (in the U.S.), I immediately thought of Wayne Whipple and his “Whipple Flag.” Blaine Whipple wrote an article on the Whipple Flag some nine years ago. In 1912 (when the Whipple Flag was conceived), federal law allowed more flexibility in flag design. Those of us born after the Flag Code was passed by Congress in 1942 won’t remember the Whipple Flag. (From 1942 until Alaska and Hawaii joined the union, the official arrangement of the 48 stars was a 6 x 8 grid.)
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