Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Tombstone Tuesday ~ Thomas Whitman

I had known the death date of Diana (Morgan) Whitman (April 25, 1861) for a while, but couldn't find any more information about her husband, my 3rd great-grandfather, Thomas Cutler Whitman (born April 2, 1803, in Guysborough County, Nova Scotia). Had he returned to Nova Scotia? Was he still living in Jamaica, Queens, New York, where his family was living in the 1860 U.S. Census, as I noted in Surname Saturday ~ Whitman? I haven't had luck finding him in the 1870 U.S. Census.

Earlier this year, I was exploring Find A Grave and found that someone had set up memorials for several Whitmans in Elmont Cemetery in Elmont, Nassau County, New York. I requested a photograph of the stones (as well as requesting management of the memorials) and got a photograph of the tombstone showing a death date of July 22, 1870.

Find A Grave Memorial# 54811937
Photo credit Find A Grave user arondo.
I then found his death notice on GenealogyBank.com:

New York Herald, July 23, 1870
WHITMAN.- On Friday, July 22, THOMAS C. WHITMAN, aged 68 years.
The funeral services will take place from Berean Baptist Church, corner Bedford & Downing streets, on Sunday morning, at nine o'clock.
Nova Scotia papers will please copy.
I love to see that last phrase because it tells me that the family wanted the news to be shared in Nova Scotia newspapers because Thomas C. Whitman would have been remembered by friends and family there.


  1. It's really interesting how the death notice asked the Nova Scotia papers to copy. In my research I've often been amazed how well people maintained connections across the miles years ago.

    1. Yes, I always like seeing the request for other papers to copy a death notice. Thanks for reading and commenting.