The Mayor's Blue Ribbon Cemetery Committee of Portsmouth, New Hampshire


Joseph Whipple Esq.

Sacred to
The Memory of
Joseph Whipple Esq.
who departed this life
Feb. 26, 1816
aged 78 years.

Joseph Whipple was the brother of William Whipple, and the Collector of Customs in Portsmouth at this time.

This article, Slavery and New Hampshire, tells the story of Ona Judge, a runaway slave of George Washington's, who was living in Portsmouth. Joseph Whipple was instructed to take her into custody and send her back to Virginia, but instead informed Washington that doing so could cause problems by the anti-slavery supporters. In the end Whipple purposefully did nothing and Ona remained a free woman, living out her years in neighboring Greenland, where she is possibly buried.

portrait of Joseph Whipple

You can read the letter sent to Joseph Whipple from Secretary of the Treasury Oliver Wolcott and his reply on the matter here.

Joseph Whipple was a founder of the town of Jefferson, NH. Being in a remote location in northern New Hampshire, few bothered developing their land claims. Joseph Whipple was one of the first, and cut through the wilderness to build a manor house. He first named the town Dartmouth after William Legge, Earl of Dartmouth. In 1796 he renamed the town Jefferson after Thomas Jefferson who would become president 4 years later.

More Biography Links:
Col. Joseph Whipple, from the website

*image used with permission from






*image used with permission from





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