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The Taming of the Tree; Christophel/Whittaker Family Roots

Updated July 17, 2014

About Our Family Research

Welcome to Taming of the Tree! My name is Dee D'Errico; and, I am the webmaster of this site which is a stepping stone to more sites presenting more information, many stories, wonderful photos, interesting court cases, and much, much more.

The adventures and misadventures of this family history were collected over many hours of pure indulgence in the quest. It all started out as a scrapbook for my children which grew into three filing cabinets. There is no end, of course, to this story......

Below the list of restored photos and the list of related family files, in the links section, are links to the three additional sites. They may be accessed by the links or by the following addresses:

"Taming The Tree" - presents a total family tree with related pictures right next to the names of the individuals in the tree and over 80 picture albums on different themes such as old homesteads, homeland villages, and pictures of cemeteries and tombstones. It also presents contributions from cousins via the picture albums:

"The See Family Chronicles" - presentation of the book "A Chronicle of the See Family and Their Kindred" by Irene See Brasel, plus my own compilation and notes on the See Family:

I have added some new links in the last section on this page for "Related Links". These are linked directly with some Free Space pages on where I have a wiki version of my family tree and will be uploading many PDF files and interesting documents and stories. Check back from time to time as there will be more.

Note: Please remember that genealogy is an on-going adventure. No one ever finishes their family tree. There may sometimes be errors made during the process. This is why I constantly try to obtain copies of original documents. It is also why I update my sites regularly with corrections and new information.

Family Photos
  • Neva Porter Whittaker Headstone (121 KB)
    Spring Grove Cemetery, Cincinnati, Ohio.
  • Benjamin Whittaker Headstone (131 KB)
    Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia
  • Virginia High Whittaker Headstone (67 KB)
    Wife of William Wallace Whittaker, Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia. Photo by Cristy Dunlap.
  • Burlew Whittaker Headstone (107 KB)
    Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia
  • David Howe's Grandfather Clock built 1712 (85 KB)
    Shipped over from England and has not stopped ticking since.
  • William Wallace Whittaker Headstone (130 KB)
    Greenlawn Cemetery, Old Soldier's Circle, Portsmouth, Ohio
  • Ephraim Whittaker Headstone (178 KB)
    Son of David and Mercy Whittaker, Old Hillside Cemetery, Concord, Massachusetts b. 23 Jul 1711 d. 03 Jun 1790
  • Emily Howe (35 KB)
    One of the three Howe sisters who came to Virginia to teach. Her sister Anna Howe married Henry B. Whitteker, son of William and Philena. Photo restored by Kelly Perez.
  • Mercy Whittaker Headstone (157 KB)
    Wife of David Whittaker, Old Hillside Cemetery, Concord, Massachusetts b. 29 Nov 1676 d. 28 Nov 1733
  • Rand House (161 KB)
    This house, no longer standing, was built by Norris S. Whitteker in Charleston, West Virginia, around the same time that he also built the Hubbard/MacFarland House (1836). See Hubbard House in the Links section below. Photo by Cristy Dunlap.
  • Oliver Whittaker Headstone (168 KB)
    Son of Ephraim Whittaker, Old Hillside Cemetery, Concord, Massachusetts b. 1743 d. 29 Jan 1756
  • Michael See Monument (100 KB)
    Monument erected by the D.A.R. as a memorial to those Revolutionary War Veterans buried in Mason County, West Virginia. Michael See's name appears in the second column, sixteenth from the top. Detail of photo taken by Sara Patton.
  • Hayna, Rheinland Pfalz, Germany (156 KB)
    The center of the village of Hayna. The little green sign points to the west to Rohrbach. This picture was the clue as to which Rohrbach of the dozen different Rohrbachs in Germany might be the correct one which the Christophels emigrated from. Photo by Dr. Jane Theede.
  • Site of the Old Indian Town at Old Chilicothe, OH (159 KB)
    This is the site where the See Indian captives, and many others, were brought by the Shawnee; and, where they were made to run the gauntlet. Photo by Sara Patton.
  • Little Ethel and Pauline Ervin (119 KB)
    Standing in the doorway of the building where they lived in Cincinnati, Ohio
  • David Whittaker Headstone (159 KB)
    Old Hillside Cemetery, Concord, Massachusetts b. 1674 d. 08 Apr 1755 Son of John and Elizabeth
  • Thomas Whitteker Headstone (166 KB)
    Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia b. 27 Dec 1795 d. 03 Jun 1867. Photo by Dale Berger.
  • Family Art Work (92 KB)
    Two Pastels by Michelle Hammond Lambert
  • Family Art Work II (62 KB)
    Colored Pencil on Scrap Paper by May Ada (Jean)Whittaker
  • Edward & May Ada Whittaker Christopher Headstone (272 KB)
    My father, Edward R. Christopher b. 07 Sep 1915 d. 25 Jun 1992. My mother, May Ada Whittaker b. 28 Apr 1912 d. 03 Jun 1978 buried in Vista Memorial Gardens at Hialeah, Florida.
  • Family Art Work III (67 KB)
    Pencil on Scrap Paper by May Ada (Jean) Whittaker
  • Lieuticia Morris Whitteker Headstone (133 KB)
    Wife of Norris Stanley Whitteker; they were my maternal Great Great Grandparents. She was b. abt. 1809 and died 17 Apr 1876 at the age of 66 yrs.
  • Family Artwork IV (82 KB)
    Pencil on Journal Sketch Paper by Joanne Finch
  • John Whitaker, Sr. (23 KB)
    Son of Benjamin Whittaker and Neva Porter.
  • Family Art Work V (68 KB)
    Pencil on Journal Sketch Paper by Joanne Finch
  • Tony Whitaker (70 KB)
    Oldest Son of Lawrence Whitaker, Sr. and Elizabeth Bielata.
  • Family Art Work VI (163 KB)
    Detail of Acrylic on Wood by Dolores Christopher D'Errico
  • Rev. Nathaniel Whittaker (12 KB)
    Son of David Whittaker and his wife, Mercy.
  • Family Art Work VII (144 KB)
    Pentel on Copy Paper by Dolores Christopher D'Errico
  • Lawrence Whitaker, Sr. (20 KB)
    Picture was taken with the 1937 Cincinnati flood in the background. Lawrence is one of the twin sons of Benjamin Whittaker and Neva Porter.
  • Tony Whitaker, WWII Cavalryman (19 KB)
    For the Tony Whitaker Memorial Page and story of the battles fought see the link to "More Taming The Tree" in the links section at the bottom of this page.
  • Dori, Bette, and Lawrence Whitaker, Jr. (49 KB)
    Children of Lawrence Whitaker and Elizabeth Bielata.
  • Doodle (Ruth) Ervin Senter with Grandchildren (71 KB)
    Daughter of Ethel Whittaker and Paul Ervin.
  • Elizabeth Christophel Leuser (103 KB)
    Daughter of Michael Christophel and Catharina Schiff.
  • Peter Adam & Mary Meyer Christopher (46 KB)
    Peter Adam and Mary's wedding took place at St. George's Catholic Church in Cincinnati, Ohio on 03 Jun 1908. Just three months before Mary had buried her father, George; and would do the same for her mother, Elizabeth, in two more months time. Her only brother would also die on Christmas day of 1912. Tragedy would strike again when one of the twins, Ellanor, would die in July of 1916 at the age of ten months. My father, Edward Christopher, was the remaining twin. In all, they had only three children who lived to adulthood.
  • The Olde Log House - Another View (87 KB)
    When William Whitteker and his bride, Philena Cobb, came to settle in Charleston, Western Virginia in 1806, this cabin, built by the Ruffners was vacant. He and Philena stayed with the David Ruffners for a few weeks until He and Philena bought their own log house and may have even stayed in this one. It was built by the father of David Ruffner, Joseph Ruffner, who had moved.
  • The Olde Log House (59 KB)
    This log house, built by Patriarch Joseph Ruffner, was probably representative of the type of log house which William Whitteker bought and lived in with his bride, according to his diary for the next 40 years, from 1807 to 1846 when Philena died. William was a carpenter and house builder and would have made improvements over the years.
  • Aaron Whitteker Headstone (67 KB)
    Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia
  • Adam & Catherine Kuntz Christophel's Children (137 KB)
    From the left: Louise Christopher Schedel, Joseph Christopher, Francis Christopher, John Christopher, Peter Adam Christopher, Charles Christopher, George Christopher, and Catherine Christopher Lacy. They all had started to use the English "Christopher" rather than the German "Christophel".
  • Betsey Dannenberry Quarrier Whitteker Headstone (68 KB)
    The wife of Aaron Whitteker, Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia
  • Florentine Leuser (109 KB)
    Daughter of Adam Leuser and Elizabeth Christophel.
  • Peter Adam Christophel First Communion (84 KB)
    My grandfather, Peter Adam Christophel, at the age of seven years, around 1885, shortly before he was to quit school in the second grade and go to work to help support his family. His father, Adam, a cigar maker, was sick; and was to die seven years later of Consumption, leaving his widow, Catherine Kuntz Christophel, with eight children.
  • Norris S. Whitteker Headstone (73 KB)
    Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia
  • Katherine Christophel Schaible (48 KB)
    Daughter of Michael Christophel and Catharina Schiff.
  • Daughters of Catherine Kuntz Christophel (117 KB)
    Catherine, in her later years, with her two daughters at either end of the photo, Louise and Kate. The others are all of her daughters- in-law, most of whom cannot be matched names with faces, except for my grandmother, Mary Meyer Christopher, third from the right. No one is left alive to identify the others, each with the correct names.
  • William S. Garcelon Headstone (62 KB)
    Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia
  • Ivory Jones/Roxalena Garcelon Headstone (94 KB)
    Spring Hill Cemetery, Charleston, West Virginia
  • Barbara Muschler Kuntz, Daughters/Grandchildren (28 KB)
    This photo, probably taken in the 1880s, is of Barbara Muschler Kuntz, mother of Catherine Kuntz Christophel with two of her daughters; Catherine on the right and Elizabeth on the left. Just who of the grandchildren appear in the photo has been lost to the mists of time. Photo restored by Kelly Perez and Dee D'Errico.
  • Edward Richard Christopher (70 KB)
    My father, Edward Richard Christopher, born 07 Sep 1915. In this picture he was about 28 years old. He was scheduled to be sent to Africa; but was discovered to have very high blood pressure, so high, in fact, that they let him out of the Army on a medical discharge. He and my mother were both twins.
  • May Ada (Jean) Whittaker (83 KB)
    My mother, May Ada Whittaker, at about 32 years of age. She had this picture made for my father when he was in the army and before they married.
  • May Ada Whittaker - Tiny Dancer (39 KB)
    May Ada Whittaker at 15 years of age. Her parents both died before she was 14 years old. She and her twin sister, Mary Ida, were packed off to a boarding school from which they both ran away at 15 and from then on took care of themselves.
  • Mary Ida Whittaker (70 KB)
    Mary Ida Whittaker and May Ada Whittaker were twin daughters born 28 Apr 1912 to Benjamin E. Whittaker and Geneva Porter at Wheeling, Ohio County, West Virginia.
  • Mary Meyer Christopher Headstone (162 KB)
    Wife of Peter Adam Christopher, Old St. Mary's Cemetery, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Ethel and May Ada Whittaker (79 KB)
    Ethel and May Ada were in their early to mid 30s in this picture. Ethel was born in 1909. It looks as though they were playing "twins" in this picture.
  • Peter Adam Christopher Headstone (203 KB)
    Old St. Mary's Cemetery, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Eva Whittaker Baron (122 KB)
    Eva was my mom's oldest sister. She was born 01 Feb 1900 at Charleston, Kanawha County, West Virginia. She worked as a hairdresser in a beauty parlor of a Cincinnati Department Store for many years.
  • Adam Christophel and Catherine Kuntz Headstone (139 KB)
    Old St. Mary's Cemetery, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • The Christopher Twins (67 KB)
    Ellanor and Edward Christopher, born 07 Sep 1915 to Peter Adam Christopher and Mary Meyer. This picture was taken shortly before Ellanor died of "gastroenteritis" during the summer time. This is now recognized to be a child-hood syndrome.
  • Esther Christopher (100 KB)
    Esther was my father's oldest sister, born in 1909 at Cincinnati, Hamilton County, Ohio. This was her high school graduation picture.
  • Roxalena Whitteker's Table (154 KB)
    Little brass card on this table, "Built by one of Norris Whitteker's sons", which was donated to the house which Norris built in Charleston, WV, led me to my 3rd cousin Carolyn Jones Halstead. After we met, I found out that what was engraved on the brass card was not even true....she did not know where the table had originated other than that it had belonged to Roxalena Whitteker, daughter of Norris Whitteker and Letitia Morris. Serendipity at work here? Or the Ancestors?
  • Virginia Christopher/Joseph Wenzel Wedding (147 KB)
    From the left: Vera Christopher (cousin), Virginia Christopher (my father's youngest sister), Joseph Wenzel, and my father, Edward Christopher. The Wedding took place at St. Monica's Catholic Church in Cincinnati, Ohio.
  • Thomas Jack Baron, Jr. (67 KB)
    Son of Thomas Jack Baron and Eva Whittaker
  • John Whittaker, Jr. (60 KB)
    Son of John and Idabelle Whittaker
  • Dolores Whittaker (82 KB)
    Daughter of Lawrence and Elizabeth Whittaker
  • Bette (aka Betty) Whittaker (113 KB)
    Bette, daughter of Lawrence & Elizabeth Whittaker on her wedding day....married to Ray Homer.
  • Jerusha Howe's Pianoforte (145 KB)
    Still sits in The Wayside Inn, Sudbury, Massachusetts, where it has been known to start to play on it's own.
Related Files
  • Carroll Ancestors (37 KB)
    Four generations from 4 X G Grandmother, Catherine Carroll with notes, documentation, and stories.
  • Lindfield Provisional Ancestors (49 KB)
    Provisional ancestors of the Lindfield family as provided by the Lin(d)field One Name Group with 22 generations, notes, and documentation.
  • Garcelon Family (34 KB)
    Six generations of Garcelons including the marriage of John W. Garcelon to Roxalena Whitteker and beyond with notes and documentation.
  • Kuntz Ancestors (30 KB)
    Contains six generations of Kuntz family from Great Grandmother Catherine Kuntz back to Christofori Kuntz in the Rheinland Pfalz in the 1700s. Includes notes and documentation.
  • Zeh/See Family Stories (267 KB)
    Six generations of the See Family, complete with stories of Indian Massacres, notes, and documentation. Report includes Story of Captain Magdalena Zeh & Life of Great Great Great Grandmother Frances See.
  • Morris Ancestors (210 KB)
    Story of Partriarch William Morris who "accidentally" came to America aboard a ship and stayed, finally settling in Western Virginia in 1774. Includes 6 generations with stories, notes, and documentation.
  • Kerley Ancestors (146 KB)
    From William Kerley, my 7XG Grandfather, down through 6 generations, including notes, stories and documentation.
  • Davis Ancestors (35 KB)
    Davis Ancestors of 5 X G Grandmother, Tabitha Davis who married Samuel Whittaker with notes and documentation.
  • Muschler Ancestors (55 KB)
    Six generations of Muschlers, including my Great Great Grandmother, Barbara Muschler, second wife of George Francis Kuntz with notes and documentation.
  • Berens Family (3 KB)
    Three generations of the Berens family to Joseph Berens who married Esther Catherine Christopher with notes and documentation.
  • Meyer Ancestors (16 KB)
    Ancestors of my paternal Grandmother, Mary Meyer, with notes and documentation.
  • Baron Family (19 KB)
    Four generations of the Baron Family from Abram Baron in England to Thomas Jack Baron, Jr. and his children in Ohio, USA.
  • High/Hoch Ancestors (97 KB)
    Great Grandmother Virginia High's ancestors & family with five generations from Switzerland & Germany to Berks County, PA & on to Western VA with notes & documentation.
  • Wenzel Family (1 KB)
    The ancestors of Joseph Wenzel who married my father's youngest sister, Virginia Christopher, with notes and documentation.
  • Whittaker/Whitteker Ancestors (338 KB)
    Six generations of Whittakers from John of Watertown MA b. 1641 through the 1800s to WV and beyond with notes, stories, and sources.
  • Howe Ancestors (132 KB)
    These pages contain six generations of the ancestors of 4 X G Grandmother Lydia Howe who married William Whitteker, Revolutionary War Veteran, plus stories, notes, and documentation.
  • The Peter Shields Story (153 KB)
    Peter came to America with the British Army during the Revolutionary War. He deserted and joined the American cause and stayed, raising a family in the new Country......
  • Granite Brick Wall Porter Ancestors (50 KB)
    The true story of how to lose a grandmother and then find her again.
  • Ringlesby Brothers and Their Families (34 KB)
    New Ringlesby/Ringsby Family information.
  • Ervin Family (8 KB)
    Four generations of Ervins with stories, notes, and documentation.
  • Descendants of Andreas Christophel (122 KB)
    Christophel granite brick wall torn down! Adam's father found. Two new generations added, including his grand parents.
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