The Family of
Joel Whitten and Mary Ann Hayes


This page created April 21, 2002.

Joel Whitten and Mary Ann Hayes were the parents of Lucinda Whitten, third wife of Littleton Whitten. Although I have not personally done much research on this branch of my family, I want to include them here by summarizing the research that has been shared with me by other researchers. W.C. Whitten includes this family in a large portion of Chapter 10 of his book Whitten and Allied Families, 2nd edition, and W.A. Whitten and Joe Alex Whitten, Jr. (both descendants of this family) have shared their information with me. Until recently, most researchers of this family agreed with the list of children published in W.C. Whitten's book. Fortunately, in 2000, W.A. Whitten and his brother Charles were finally able to obtain copies of the family Bible of Joel Newton Whitten (son of Joel and Mary Ann) from the Masonic Lodge in Pelahatchie, Mississippi. The information in this Bible largely substantiates what W.C. Whitten published but has shed light on some previously forgotten children and clarified misinformation on others. To W.C.'s credit, however, he tried numerous times to obtain copies of the Bible from the Masonic Lodge before he published his book but was unsuccessful. The children below are listed with the information taken from the Bible whenever possible. Scanned images of the Bible pages (scanned from photocopies) are also included as links below.

W.C. Whitten devotes his entire Chapter 10 to the Whitten families from Lauderdale County, Alabama and Wayne County, Tennessee. He also describes how most of the Whitten families migrated to Alabama and Tennesse from South Carolina. Several of these families (or perhaps several branches of the same family) were from the Newberry District of South Carolina, in particular the family of Charles Whitten, Sr. There is evidence to suggest that Joel Whitten (father of Lucinda Pearlee Whitten) was part of the group that migrated from Newberry District, South Carolina, and he is believed by W.C. Whitten to be a son of Charles Whitten, Sr., although there is no documentation to prove this relationship.

Bible, cemetery, and military records record that Joel Whitten was born in 1792 in Newberry District, South Carolina. He fought in the War of 1812, and according to military records cited by W.C. Whitten, Joel enlisted in 1813 and was discharged in 1818. Joel married Mary Ann Hayes in June 1819 probably in Newberry District, and the couple had their first child Milton in December 1820. It is thought that their first three children were born in South Carolina (probably Newberry District) between the years 1820-1824, but that their fourth child, Harriet, was born in Lauderdale County, Alabama in 1826. Their next child, Lucinda, was supposedly born in Wayne County, Tennesse in 1828, as were the next six children born 1830-1842. Their last known child, Martha, was born in 1845 in Pontotoc County, Mississippi.

Mary Ann Hayes, often called Polly, was born in 1800, reportedly in Marion County, South Carolina. It is not yet know who her parents were. She and husband Joel, along with their youngest five children, were enumerated in Pontotoc County, Mississippi on the 1850 census. I do not know where they were enumerated on the 1860 census, but I would suspect they might be found in Pontotoc County again. Joel died in December 1860, and Polly died in 1866, probably both in Pontotoc County. They were both buried in Caffey Cemetery, a private cemetery in Pontotoc County, Mississippi. Joel's grave is marked with a government-issued headstone indicating his service in the War of 1812.


Joel Whitten
Born:  January 13, 1792, probably in Newberry District, South Carolina
Married:  June 6, 1819, probably in Newberry District, South Carolina
Died:  December 12, 1860 in Pontotoc, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
Buried:  Caffey Cemetery, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
Father:  possibly Charles Whitten, Sr. of Newberry District, South Carolina
Mother:  Unknown

Mary Ann Hayes
Born:  June 26, 1800, probably in Marion County, South Carolina
Died:  October 6, 1866, probably in Pontotoc County, Mississippi
Buried: Caffey Cemetery, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
Father:  Unknown
Mother:  Unknown

  1. Milton W. Whitten
    Born: December 12, 1820, Newberry District, South Carolina
    Married:  May 12, 1841
    Spouse:   Eliza Hay
    Died:  January 6 or 17, 1858 (per Bible). W.C. Whitten has date as February 17, 1858 and location as Wayne County, Tennessee
    Burial: Unknown

    W.C. Whitten listed a Melton Whitten as a child of George Whitten and Elizabeth Cox. George was apparently a son of Charles Whitten Sr, making him a brother to Joel Whitten, and a Melton Whitten did witness a land deed for George in 1852. However, the family Bible of Joel Newton Whitten lists Milton's birthdate first after Joel and Mary Ann's birthdates, and gives their wedding date as June 1819 and Milton's birthdate as December 1820. It would therefore appear that Milton was the first child of Joel and Mary Ann Whitten. The Bible also lists Milton's marriage to Eliza Hay and his death date in January 1858. Also in his book, W.C. Whitten tells this story: "Following his death there was a law-suit between MELTON's widow, ELIZA, and MELTON's partners in the mills. But there was nothing to be gained by the suit as MELTON had been forced to sell the mills during the depression of 1857."

    In my original version of this page, I showed a second marriage for Milton to Mary C. Marshall on March 22, 1883 in Wayne County, Tennessee. A kind cousin and fellow researcher pointed out that Milton died in 1857! Fortunately, W.C. Whitten shows that Milton and Eliza had a son, Milton Wesley. It was Milton Wesley Whitten that married Mary Marshall.

  2. Jacob Asbury Whitten
    Born: March 20 or 26, 1822, possibly in Newberry District, South Carolina
    Married:  Unknown date/place
    Spouse:   Sarah Young (?)
    Died:  Unknown
    Burial: Unknown

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible lists Jacob Asbury Whitten next after Milton in the list of births. The month and year of birth for Jacob are fairly legible, but the day appears to be either 20 or 26. The Bible makes no mention of marriage or death information, but W.C. Whitten makes reference to a Jacob A. Whitten on page 516 of his book: "(Texas and Texans and New Ency. of Texas): JACOB A. WHITTEN, b. Callahan Co., Tex., 19 June 1865, was son of JACOB A. WHITTEN, native of Tenn. and SARAH (YOUNG) WHITTEN, native of Texas. JACOB, Jr. md. in Stephens Co., Tex. 20 Dec. 1889, MOLLIE MORRIS." Could this Jacob Sr. be the son of Joel and Mary Ann?

  3. Nancy Elizabeth Whitten
    Born: December 9, 1824, possibly Newberry District, South Carolina
    Married:  Date/place unknown
    Spouse:   Alexander Simmons
    Died:  May 6, 1860 or 1861
    Burial: Unknown

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible lists the birthdate of Nancy Elizabeth Whitten as shown above then later records the following for her death: "Departed this life on the 6th of May Nancy Elizabeth Simmons, dauter [sic] of Joel & Mary Whitten adged [sic] 37." W.C. Whitten adds the following information for her on page 527: "NANCY ELIZABETH WHITTEN, b. 1824 in S.C., md. ALEXANDER SIMMONS, where or when unknown. Had 3 sons: JOHN ALEXANDER, b. 4 Oct. 1846 in Miss.; WILLIAM CARROLL; FLETCHER." I consider it likely that these two Nancy Elizabeth Simmons are the same person.

  4. Harriet Rebecca Whitten
    Born: May 10, 1826, possibly in Lauderdale County, Alabama
    Married:  July 11, 1848 in Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Spouse:   Elijah Simpson Sanders
    Died:  Unknown
    Burial: Unknown

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible lists "Hariet Rebecky" as the fourth child of Joel and Mary. It does not list marriage or death dates for her. However, according to W.C. Whitten on p. 320, Harriet Rebecca Whitten's marriage to Elijah Simpson Sanders was found in the marriage records of Pontotoc County, Mississippi.

  5. Lucinda Pearlee (Paralee) Whitten
    Born: August 19, 1828, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Married:  About 1843, possibly in Wayne County, Tennessee or
    Spouse:   Littleton Augustus (Gus) Whitten
    Died:  December 12, 1894 in Attala County, Mississippi
    Burial: Edgefield Cemetery, Attala County, Mississippi

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible lists the birthdate for "Lucinda Parlee" as the date shown above but gives no other information for her. We know from family tradition and the 1850 census of Pontotoc County, Mississippi that Lucinda married Littleton Whitten, but the date and location of their marriage is not known for sure. Since their first child was born in December 1843, it would be likely that they were married in early 1843. Because no official marriage record has yet been located, the location of their marriage is also a topic of speculation. However, due to her age at the time of marriage (15) and due to the fact that Littleton and Lucinda were living almost next door to her parents in 1850, I would expect that Littleton and Lucinda were married near to where her parents were living in 1843. According to Joel Newton Whitten's Bible, Lucinda's parents had two children in 1837 and 1842, and family tradition has that these two children were born in Wayne County, Tennessee. Perhaps that is where Littleton and Lucinda married?

  6. Frances Lodasky Whitten
    Born: August 9, 1830, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Married:  November 29, 1846 in Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Spouse:   Ezekiel Lyon Pratt
    Died:  Probably in Utah, probably near Salt Lake City
    Burial: Unknown, but probably in Utah

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible gives the birthdate of "Franie Lodaska" as shown above, and W.C. Whitten suggests on p. 319 of his book that Frances was probably born in Wayne County, Tennessee. Her marriage to Ezekial Pratt was recorded in Pontotoc County, Mississippi. The family reportedly moved to Utah about 1857, and according to W.C. Whitten, "The date of FRANCES' death is not known, but E.L. PRATT md. (2) MINERVA FAULKNER." A Pratt descendant told Joe A. Whitten that Ezekial died in Salt Lake City, Utah.

  7. Charles Wesley Whitten
    Born: June 26, 1833, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Married:  March 2, 1860 at Redlands, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Spouse:   Mary Louise (Mollie) Ellis
    Died:  February 29, 1876, Pontotoc, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Burial: White Zion Cemetery, Pontotoc County, Mississippi (no marker)

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible records the birthdate of "Charles Wesley" as shown above and also lists his marriage and death dates as shown above. The date of marriage is very difficult to read. W.A. Whitten has transcribed the date as the March 2, 1860. I find the day of the month and the exact year (186?) to be practically illegible, but family tradition holds that they were married during the Civil War. Charles died in 1876, and according to W.C. Whitten, Mollie remarried to Henry Pitts. She died and was buried in Tampa, Florida about 1922.

  8. Mary Emelyn Whitten
    Born: August 25, 1835, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Died:  May 2, 1836, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Burial: Unknown, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee

    Until copies of Joel Newton Whitten's Bible were made available, this child had been unknown to modern descendants. The Bible lists her birth and death dates as shown above but does not make any mention of the locations. Since the children born before her birth and after her death are assumed to have been born in Wayne County, Tennessee, the possibility seems likely that she was born, died, and buried in Wayne County also.

  9. Jasper Marion (Jap) Whitten
    Born: May 14, 1837, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Married:  September 18, 1867, Troy, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Spouse:   Mary Virginia Rutledge
    Died:  July 10, 1891, Monroe County, Mississippi
    Burial: Eddington Cemetery, Troy, Pontotoc County, Mississippi

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible lists the birthdate for "Jasper Marin" as shown above but gives no other information. Joe A. Whitten, Jr., grandson of Jasper, provided the date and places for the marriage, death, and burial. According to a note by Toni Brahier: "Jasper entered the Civil War March 2, 1861 at Pontotoc with the Pontotoc Dragons, organized February 22, 1861 with 125 men who engaged in the battle of Ackia (This spelling may be wrong). The battalion disbanded June 1862, and a monument to the Dragons is on the property once owned by Joel Whitten, 10 miles east of Pontotoc. He reenlisted at Union City, TN in Co. I, 1st Reg. MS Calvary as a Corporal and served under Lt. Gen R. Taylor. His regiment was captured May 4, 1865 and were released May 16, 1865. He was 24 yrs. of age."

  10. Eliza C. Catherine Whitten
    Born: September 14, 1839, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Married (1):  December 22, 1853, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Spouse (1):   E. L. McMahan
    Married (2):  after death of first husband
    Spouse (2):   Mr. Stegall
    Died:  Unknown
    Burial: Unknown

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible lists the birthdate for "Eliza C. Catherine" as shown above. The 1850 Census of Pontotoc County, Mississippi shows that "Eliza" was born in Tennessee. The Bible also gives her marriage date to E.L. McMahan as December 22 of 185? (the year is almost illegible). However, according to W.C. Whitten, "Marriage records in Pontotoc Co. show a CATHERINE WHITTEN marrying an E.L. McMAHAN on 21 Oct. 1853." I have not personally seen the official record, but perhaps their license was issued in October with the ceremony being delayed until December? Catherine had three children with McMahan, and the Bible lists their names and birthdates as the following: Mary F.C. McMahan (born October 4, 1855), Daniel W. McMahan (born July 16, 1858), and Sarah D. McMahan (born July 1, 1860?). The Bible states that all three children were born in Pontotoc County, Mississippi. Family tradition holds that Catherine remarried after the death of McMahan to a man named Stegall.

  11. Joel Newton Whitten
    Born: April 20, 1842, probably in Wayne County, Tennessee
    Married:  September 29, 1864 in Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Spouse:   Julia Pamela Marr
    Died:  1929 in Long Beach, Mississippi
    Burial: Confederate Cemetery, Beauvoir, Bolivar County, Mississippi

    Joel Newton's Bible lists his birthdate as shown above but does not list any other information on him. Perhaps this was his parents' Bible that he inherited? The 1850 Census of Pontotoc County, Mississippi shows that "Joel" was born in Tennessee. Joe A. Whitten, Jr. provided the date and place of marriage. W.C. Whitten's book (pp. 319-320) gives this additional information on Joel Newton's life:

    "Records at the Nat'l Archives say that JOEL NEWTON enlisted 28 Feb. 1862 in Co. A, Orr's Guards, at Red Land, Miss., by Col. J.A. ORR. The unit was later changed to 31st Regt., Mississippi Vol. Infantry. These records say that JOEL NEWTON enlisted as a 4th Corporal, later was promoted to 3rd Corporal, and then to 1st Corporal, then to 5th Sgt. on 1 Jan. 1863, and finally to 4th Sgt. He was wounded at Resacca, Ga. 1 May 1864. From then, he seems to have spent the rest of the war in the hospital at Lauderdale Springs, Miss., or on furlough from the hospital... [According to a great-granddaughter-in-law] the family migrated to Texas about 1875, but only stayed about two years because of "water problems." They then migrated back to Mississippi... Later, JOEL WHITTEN and his family moved to the Gulf Coast where he was Mayor of Long Beach, Miss. for years before his death which occurred about 1927 according to a granddaughter. The Bible of JOEL NEWTON WHITTEN is in the possession of a Masonic Lodge in Pelehatchie, Miss.... JOEL NEWTON and JULIA are bd. in the Confederate Cem. at Beauvoir, between Gulfport and Biloxi, Miss., on the Gulf Coast, the final home of JEFFERSON DAVIS. The gravestone marker there says JOEL NEWTON WHITTEN, b. 1842, d. 1929; JULIA, b. 26 May 1844, d. 17 Oct. 1929."

  12. Martha Ezbela (or Ezlula) Ann Whitten
    Born: June 26 1845, probably in Pontotoc, Pontotoc County, Mississippi
    Married:  1871
    Spouse:   James Porter Miears
    Died:  November 5, 1875
    Burial: Unknown

    Joel Newton Whitten's Bible gives the birthdate for Martha as shown above, but her middle name is almost illegible. Her name has been transcribed as Martha Ezlula and Martha Ezbela. Joe A. Whitten, Jr. has her listed as Martha Ann in his notes, and he is also my source for the place of her birth, the date of her marriage, and the full name of her husband. The 1850 census of Pontotoc County, Mississippi also shows her born in Mississippi. W.C. Whitten shows one child for Martha, a son Hewlett who was born in February 1874 in Mississippi. The Bible records that "MA Miears, wife of JP Miears, dec'd on the 5th day of November AD 1875." Her son was not quite two years old when Martha died.


As if the above listed twelve children were not enough to digest, there has been a good deal of confusion regarding other Whittens that have been thought to be children of Joel and Mary Ann Whitten also. As for me personally, I believe the list included in the Bible represents a complete list of children for Joel and Mary Ann Whitten, but I include the information on the individuals below because no one has yet been able to provide clear indication of where they belong. If anyone has further information regarding these individuals, I would welcome your information!


1850 Pontotoc County, MS:
House 300/300
Whitten, Joel - age 58, farmer, value of real estate 700, born SC
Whitten, Mary - age 49, born SC
Whitten, Wesley - age 16, born TN
Whitten, Jasper - age 12, born TN
Whitten, Eliza - age 11, born TN
Whitten, Joel - age 7, born TN
Whitten, Martha - age 4, born MS

House 302/302
Whitten, Littleton - age 48, brickmason, born SC
Whitten, Lucinda - age 22, born TN
Whitten, John - age 6, born MS
Whitten, Mary - age 4, born MS
Whitten, Sarah - age 1, born MS



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