William Collins Whitney

#78318
Most Popular
Boost
Birthday
5, 1841
Birthplace
Massachusetts
Death Date
Feb 2, 1904 (62)
Birth Sign
Cancer
Birthday
5, 1841
Birthplace
Massachusetts
Death Date
Feb 2, 1904 (62)

About

Remembered as both a politician and a successful businessman, this conservative "Bourbon" Democrat served as President Grover Cleveland's first Secretary of the Navy and made his fortune in the legal, railway, steel, coal, financial, and horse racing industries.

Before Fame

After graduating from Yale University in the early 1860s, he pursued a law degree at Harvard College.

Trivia

Over the course of his life, he bred nearly thirty American race-winning horses.

Family Life

A member of the wealthy and socially prominent Whitney family, he grew up with a brother, Henry Melville Whitney, who headed major steamship and railway companies, and with sisters, Lily and Susan, who married into other prominent families. His marriage to Flora Payne produced children named Harry, Pauline, Payne, Oliver, and Dorothy; his second wife (whom he married after Flora Payne's death) was Edith May.

Associated With

His oldest son, Harry Whitney, carried on the Whitney family's horse breeding legacy, producing a dozen Kentucky Derby horses.