Notable Whipples

Notable Whipples

(Besides the information on this page, you might want to visit Wikipedia for more information about these and other Whipples.)


  • Ipswich (Mass.) Whipples
  • Rhode Island Whipples


The earliest mention of a Whipple is probably an entry in the Domesday Book (A.D. 1086), the record of a tax levied shortly after the Norman Conquest of 1066. (In the Domesday Book, the spelling was "Winple.") Several centuries later, a nobleman named Henri de Hipple lived in the old duchy of Normandy. Henri fought for King Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, for which he was knighted and awarded lands in the county of Norfolk. His family's name was changed to Whipple during the reign of Henry VIII (1509-1547). The Whipple name continues in modern-day England.

Anthony Whipple
Present-day Whipple of London, England. (Yes, not all Whipples migrated to America!) (See Anthony's photograph on this site.)
Ernest George Wippell
A resident of Winchcome Gloucester (in the U.K.), Ernest was a "well-known artist in dogs, cats, poultry, birds, flowers, fruit, and insects. He also did cigarette cards." --Harold Poile (
Matthew Whipple
Of Bocking, England, he was for many years the earliest known Whipple in the Ipswich, Massachusetts, line--and the earliest Whipple in the Whipple Database.
Thomas Whipple
Of Bishop's Stortford, England, he was proposed in fall 2006 as the new earliest known Whipple in the Ipswich, Massachusetts, line. The grandfather of Matthew (above), he is now the earliest Whipple in the Whipple Database.

Colonial America

Most present-day Whipples are probably descendants of immigrants to colonial America from England in the early 1600s. At least two groups of Whipples settled in America at that time. One is represented by Captain John Whipple, who settled in Providence, Rhode Island, after living for a period of time in Dorchester, Massachusetts. The other group is represented by John and Matthew Whipple (sons of Matthew "the Elder" Whipple), who migrated from Bocking, Essex, England, and settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts. Among the descendants of this group are U.S. Presidents, social reformers, inventors, manufacturers, statesmen, explorers, and many others.

Notable among Afro-American Whipples is Prince Whipple, originally a slave of (later freed by) General William Whipple, who signed the Declaration of Independence. Other Afro-American Whipple branches exist, but are not yet known to this website.

Stephen Hopkins
Signer of the Declaration of Independence and governor of colonial Rhode Island. (His brother, Esek, was Commander in Chief of the Continental Navy. Their niece, Sarah Hopkins, married Commodore Abraham Whipple,)
Marion (Whipple) Rathbone
Probably the first Whipple in America, Marion and her husband, Richard Rathbone, are believed to have sailed from England aboard the ship Speedwell in about 1621, settling in New England
Abraham Whipple
Commodore in the U.S. Navy during the American Revolution. (Visit The Commodore's Page on this site.) Abraham led the American colonies' first open, armed opposition to British forces in the burning of the ship Gaspee (see on June 10th, 1772. (One of Abraham's ships--the Katy--was rechristened the Providence. See
John Whipple ("Captain")
Previously thought to be the first Whipple in America. (In fact, he might still be the first!) As a youth, John sailed aboard the Lyon from England to Dorchester, Massachusetts, in 1631 or 1632. Some 26 years later, in 1658, he moved with his wife and children to Rhode Island. (See this site's Two Immigrants Named John.)
John Whipple ("Elder")
With his brother Matthew, migrated from Bocking England to Ipswich, Massachusetts, in 1638. Son of Matthew. This John is frequently confused with Captain John (the one who eventually settled in Providence, Rhode Island). (See this site's Two Immigrants Named John. John's will at
Joseph Whipple III
Joseph III and his father Joseph Jr. both served as deputy governors of Rhode Island. Joseph III's portrait appears on this web site.
Prince Whipple
New Hampshire's foremost black representative of America's Revolutionary War. Named after his master, General William Whipple. (See more at Prince's web page.)
Samuel Whipple
Settled near the Connecticut village of Poquetannoc in 1712. His descendants who remained in the Groton/Ledyard area became members of John Rogers' Rogerene community in Quakertown (in the southern part of Ledyard, Connecticut).
William Whipple
Signer of the Declaration of Independence from New Hampshire. (See William Whipple, Signer of the Declaration of Independence on this site.)

United States

As the colonies united to form the United States, Whipple ranks were joined by native Americans and immigrants from Ireland, Austria/Germany and Prussia. (View the U.S. distribution of Whipples in 1850, 1880, 1920 and 1990.) Whipples left the U.S. to settle in Australia, Chile and the Dominican Republic.

Susan B. Anthony
Pioneer in the women's rights movement.
Latimer Whipple Ballou
U.S. Representative from the 2nd Rhode Island district, 1875-1881.
Clara Barton
Founder of the Red Cross.
William Jennings Bryan
Husband of a Rhode Island Whipple, he was an American politician and orator who ran (unsuccessfully) for U.S. President three times.
John Lester Hubbard Chafee
Governor of Rhode Island 1962-1969; U.S. Secretary of the Navy, 1969-1972; U.S. Senator from Rhode Island 1977-1999.
Lincoln D. Chafee
U.S. Senator from Rhode Island, elected 2000, to serve until 3 Jan 2007.
Montgomery "Monty" Clift
Acted in numerous movies, including Freud (1962), Judgment at Nuremberg (1961), Raintree County 1957), From Here to Eternity (1953), Red River (1948), and The Search (1948)..
Calvin Coolidge
30th President of the United States (1923-1929). (Both of his parents are descendants; so is his wife!)
Nelson Eddy
Singer and Hollywood actor who appeared in 19 musical films during the 1930s and 1940s, as well as in opera and on the concert stage, radio, television, and in nightclubs. One of the first "crossover" stars, he appealed to shrieking bobby soxers and opera purists alike. In his heyday, he was the highest paid singer in the world.
Lloyd Espenschied
Research and development engineer at Bell Labs. Among his 130 U.S. Patents are the coaxial cable, the radio altimeter, and radar.
Arthur Fenner, Jr.
Governor of Rhode Island, 1789-1805.
James Fenner
Elected as U.S. Senator from Rhode Island, he served from March 4, 1805, to September 1807, when he resigned to become Governor of Rhode Island 1807-1811, 1824-1831, 1843-1845. He was presidential elector, 1821 and 1837; and president of the Rhode Island constitutional convention, 1842.
John Brown Francis
Governor of Rhode Island 1833-1838.
Robert Goddard
Pioneer of rocket science (for whom NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center is named).
Ty Hardin
Television and motion picture actor. His credits include Bronco Layne, Merrill's Marauders, PT 109 and others (see more complete list of credits).
Charles W. Lippitt
Elected governor of Rhode Island in 1895.
Henry F. Lippitt, Sr.
Elected governor of Rhode Island in 1875.
Henry F. Lippitt, Jr.
Served as a U.S. Senator from Rhode Island from 1911 to 1917.
H.P. (Howard Phillips) Lovecraft
Writer of "wierd fiction." (His tale, The Case of Charles Dexter Ward, is reviewed on this site.) Visit his web site at
James Russell Lowell
Best known as a poet, he was also a noted editor, literary critic, lecturer, teacher, scholar, reformer and diplomat who played an important part in the cultual life of the United States.
Horace Mann
Called the "Father of the Common Schools," Horace Mann played a leading role in establishing the United States' elementary school system. Visit PBS's page on Horace Mann.
Joel McCrea
Perhaps best known as a star in American Western movies, he also played leading roles in non-Westerns, and has a star in Hollywood's Walk of Fame. Among his numerous movies are titles like Ride the High Country (1962), Stars in My Crown (1952) and Alfred Hitchcock's Foreign Correspondent. (See what Google's search service retrieves for Joel McCrea.) His wife Frances Dee and son Jody McCrea were/are likewise noted actors/personalities.
Ransom Eli Olds
Originator of Oldsmobile cars.
John Sargent Pillsbury
Governor of Minnesota from 1876 to 1882, he founded Pillsbury Mills with his brother George and nephew Charles.
Charles Pratt
One of the large owners of the Standard Oil Company (in association with John D. Rockefeller, Stephen Harkness, William G. Warden, and others), Charles founded and endowed the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Joe Redington
Founder of Alaska's Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race from Anchorage to Nome.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt
32nd President of the United States (1933-1945).
Tom Von Ruden
A world class middle distance runner in the late 1960s and early 1970s, Tom was a member of the United States Olympic team at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City. He twice (February 1970 and February 1971) set the world record in the 1000 meter run. On the latter occasion, he held the world record for almost five years.
Henry Hastings Sibley
First Governor of the State of Minnesota (1858-1860).
Ryan Tedder
Singer, songwriter, musician, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, and lead vocalist of the pop rock band OneRepublic. He has an independent career as songwriter and producer for numerous artists. One of his YouTube videos has over 2 billion views. Read more in Wikipedia.
James Alfred Van Allen
In the 1950s, instruments he designed and placed aboard the first U.S. satellite, Explorer One, discovered the bands of radiation surrounding the Earth--now called the Van Allen Radiation Belts. The Van Allen Belts explain (for example) the aurora borealis ("northern lights") seen in the northern latitudes. Van Allen died 9 Aug 2006 in Iowa City, Iowa. Related sites:
A.B.C. (Addison Beecher Colvin) "Cal" Whipple
An executive editor at Time-Life Books. He authored a number of books on a variety of subjects, including some on ships and manners.
Allen Oldfather Whipple
Professor of surgery at Columbia University, 1921-1946, who developed the "Whipple operation" for treatment of pancreatic cancer.
Amiel Weeks Whipple
Explorer of the southwestern U.S., topographical engineer, and military general and defender of Washington, D.C., during the U.S. Civil War, where he was mortally wounded at the battle of Chancellorsville in 1863. From the 1860s until 1881, Fort Myer (Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia) was named Fort Whipple, in his honor. Read more at Amiel's web page.
Charles Ayer Whipple
Portrait painter and mural artist. He spent seven years (1921-1928) retouching the famous Brumidi paintings in the first floor Senate wing of the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. His portrait of President McKinley is in the the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, D.C.
Charles W. Whipple
Appointed Chief Justice of the Michigan Supreme Court in 1848. He was a delegate to the state Constitutional Convention in 1850 and served in a variety of other capacities.
Chris C. Whipple
Former producer at CBS News 60 Minutes and ABC News PrimeTime, and creator of the hit show What Would You Do?
Edwin Percy Whipple
Boston author and lecturer. His biographers state that (although "time has passed him by") in the mid-nineteenth century "he was surpassed only by Poe and James Russell Lowell [his 7th cousin, see above] as an informed, judicious, and comprehensive critic."
Frances Harriet Whipple Green McDougall
Poet, novelist, essayist, abolitionist, suffrage advocate, spiritualist. Active first in Rhode Island and New England, she migrated to San Francisco in 1861. Read Sarah C. O'Dowd's biography and analysis of her life and literary contributions.
Frank Whipple, Jr.
Creator of the "Whimsical Nuns" paintings sold at Laguna Originals Gallery (Laguna Beach, California). You can now purchase Frank's Whimsical Nuns paintings as greeting cards from Whipple's Wimples. Collectors of Frank's paintings include Lucille Ball, Frank Sinatra, Johnny Carson, and others. (Source:
Fred Lawrence Whipple
Astronomer. He was Chairman of Department of Astronomy, Harvard University, 1949-1956, and Director of the Smithsonian Institution Astrophysical Observatory, beginning in 1955. Arizona's Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory bears his name.
George C. Whipple III
New York society reporter. George hosts Whipple's World on NY1. (See George in the Photo Gallery.)
George Hoyt Whipple
Recipient of the 1934 Nobel Prize in Medicine. (See his biography and a photograph of his childhood home on this site. That home is now the Whipple House Museum in Ashland, New Hampshire.)
Guy Montrose Whipple
American psychologist and editor.
Henry Benjamin Whipple (Bishop)
The first Episcopal bishop of Minnesota.
John Adams Whipple
Boston photographer who was the first in the United States to take up the manufacture of chemicals that were used in the daguerreotype process. Read Historic Camera's biography of John Adams Whipple
John N. Whipple
The husband of Eva Dalton of the notorious Dalton Gang of Kansas and surrounding states.
Joseph Reed Whipple
Boston hotel owner and manager. (See his biography on this site.)
Manley Nehemiah Whipple
Manley (1814-1843) and two of his grand children, Charles Burgess and Ella Agnes Burgess Sneary, drew a series of pencil sketches that are the subject of a set of pages on the Whipple Website.
Randy Whipple
After a successful career as a childhood actor (appearing as Randy Crabtree in "My Mother the Car" and roles in "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet," Adam-12," "The Red Skelton Show" and others, Randy went to college, met his wife, and had jobs as news anchors. He eventually became a successful realtor in Oregon.
Robert Eugene Whipple
The first of a line of Irish Whipples that immigrated to the United States from County Cork, Ireland, in the early 1800s. (See genealogist Blaine Whipple's Why They Left The Emerald Isle.) Among Robert's descendants are one of two Whipple families that currently live in Australia. That family moved from Kansas to Australia via New Zealand in 1970. The other family migrated to Perth from Hawaii, about 100 years ago. (Source: Tricia Whipple)
S.A. (Seth Arca) Whipple
Born in Michigan in 1855, S.A. is noted for his paintings of ore boats and scenes in the Great Lakes region of the U.S.
Sampson E. "Sam" Whipple
"American actor best remembered for his role as Dr. John Ballard on the TV series Seven Days. His credits include The Doors, Airheads, This Is Spinal Tap, ... The Rock [and many others]." (Source: Wikipedia.) Additional credits appear at
Squire Whipple
Civil engineer, "The father of American bridge building." (See his biography on this site.)
Thomas "Red Legs" Whipple (Chief)
Sioux Indian Chief who lived in southern Minnesota in the 19th century. "Forced" to take a "European" name, he chose Thomas Whipple, and named his son Benjamin Whipple, after Bishop Henry Benjamin Whipple, Episcopal Bishop of Minnesota, a vocal advocate of the rights of native Americans. (Source:
Walter Whipple
Silent screen star who started his acting career on the stage in Oakland and San Francisco, Calif. He reportedly taught Lon Chaney how to mix and apply make-up. Walter starred in "Squaw Man" on the stage in San Francisco. Although not listed in the credits, Walter was in the silent film "Hell's Hinges" with Wm. S. Hart? (Source: Katherine Ruth Neal, Walter's granddaughter)
Wayne Whipple
Author. At age 49 he "began writing and gave up all other interests, ... producing the equivalent of fifty books, including newspaper and magazine syndicate articles, and at sixty began writing for the motion picture industry." He designed the Whipple Flag.
William Denison Whipple (Major General)
Chief of Staff in the Army of Cumberland in the Civil War, and later on the staffs of Generals Sherman and Sheridan. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington Virginia .
Winfield "Win" Whipple
Born in Crowley, Louisiana, Win grew up in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. He is remembered in Arkansas sports history for The Jump, on May 5, 1933, at the annual state high school track meet at the College of the Ozarks at Clarksville. Read his biography by Larry Don Frost.
Tennessee Williams
American playwright best known for The Glass Menagerie (1945) and A Streetcar Named Desire (1947).
Lothrop Withington, Jr
Harvard freshman and football captain and noted goldfish swallower. After earning an extra $10 for swallowing a goldfish at the Harvard's Freshman Union on 3 Mar 1939, Lothrop remarked, "The scales caught a bit on my throat as it went down." (See Swallowing Goldfish.)
Brigham Young
Colonizer of the American West and second president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Edson Whipple (of Rhode Island descent) accompanied Brigham on his first journey to the Salt Lake Valley. (Edson's autobiography appears on this site.) Nelson Wheeler Whipple and Eli Whipple followed soon after.
Steve Young
Quarterback for the San Francisco '49ers.


Charles Everett Whipple
Migrated from Kansas to Australia via New Zealand in 1970. This line descends from Robert Eugene Whipple, who migrated to the United States from Ireland in the early 1800s.
Lysander Greenlief a.k.a William Francis Whipple
Ancestor of many of today's Australian Whipples.


Germany (and German-speaking countries) didn't really exist as a nation before 1871. Before that time, it was a diverse group of countries, duchies, independent cities, etc.--whose boundaries shifted frequently.

Christopher Wippel
According to his Find a Grave memorial, his parish records are from Roxheim, Germany. "Christopher came to America with his wife Catharina (Lauer) Wippel and four children aboard the ship Strabo. The family arrived in Baltimore [on] 6 July 1840. By the 1850 Census, the family is living in New Sewickley Township, Beaver County, Pennsylvania."
George Whipple
The Whipples of Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, are descendants of George Whipple, whose son, Charles Frederick Whipple, was born in Germany in 1841, and immigrated to the U.S. in 1844. (See the 6 Jun 1900 Census of Ward 5, Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, which lists Charles F. Whipple as head of household, born in Germany--as were his parents.) Some sources indicate that the Terrebonne Whipples came from Baden (more specifically, from Baden-Baden). We're not sure how to say/spell "Whipple" in German. George might have been spelled Georg; Charles Frederick might have been Carl (or Karl) Friedrich.

A family named Wippel reportedly came to the U.S. from Austria/Germany. Upon their arrival in about 1900, they anglicized the spelling of their name to Whipple. (Source: Bill Whipple.)

A group of Whipples in Kansas/Missouri and New York traces its ancestry to a family named Woepple (or Wöpple) from Prussia. (The Prussian Whipples might be related to the Austria/Germany Whipples mentioned above.) (Source: Jason T. Whipple)


John William Whipple
Ancestor of Chilean Whipples. After receiving his M.D. from Harvard Medical School in 1852, he migrated to Chile by 1857. See the Whipple Blog for more information.

Dominican Republic

Lowell Sharman Whipple
Born in 1893 in Kingsbridge, N.Y., Lowell is the ancestor of all the Whipples in the Dominican Republic that we know about..


Kees van Keulen ( of the Netherlands reports that three of his relatives are Whipples. In a note to the Whipple Website dated 20 Jan 2000, he states that they include:

  1. The grandmother of my daughter - she is a Rosalie Whipple (Risselada-Harrold)) and at her age of 82 lives in The Hague.
  2. The oldest daughter of this (very very nice) grandma and the aunt of my daughter - she is an Inez Whipple (Schreij-Risselada) and lives in Schimmert in the deep-south of The Netherlands.
  3. My daughter - who is Robin Whipple Risselada.

Referring to the fact that all the three Dutch Whipples he knows are all women (who change their surnames when married), Kees adds, "There won't be more Whipples around here, I guess."

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