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Amos Whitney

Amos WhitneyBorn: 8-Oct-1832
Birthplace: Biddeford, ME
Died: 5-Aug-1928
Location of death: Portland, ME
Cause of death: unspecified
Remains: Buried, Cedar Hill Cemetery, Hartford, CT

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Business, Engineer
Party Affiliation: Republican

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Co-Founder of Pratt & Whitney

Amos Whitney began his apprenticeship as a machinist when he was 13, following in his father's footsteps. In the late 1850s he met and befriended Francis A. Pratt, a co-worker at the Phoenix Iron Works, and in 1860 they opened their own machine shop, Pratt & Whitney. The shop first manufactured automatic silk winders, but soon expanded into guns and gun-making machinery. Five years after opening the shop, Whitney was able to quit his day job and work full-time there. In the company's quest for perfectly interchangeable parts, Pratt & Whitney became famous for funding the research, design, and construction of the Rogers-Bond comparator, which ascertained the exact length of the foot to 1/50,000th of an inch. This allowed the mass production of precision interchangeable parts, and facilitated the development of large-scale industrial manufacturing. He was a distant cousin of cotton gin inventor Eli Whitney.

Father: Aaron Whitney (machinist)
Mother: Rebecca Perkins Whitney
Wife: Laura Johnson Whitney (m. 8-Sep-1856)
Son: Clarence Whitney (Pratt & Whitney executive)
Daughter: Nettie Whitney

    Essex Machine Co. (1845-50)
    Colt Firearms Co. (1850-56)
    Phoenix Iron Works (1856-65)
    Pratt & Whitney Co-Founder & Superindent (1860-1920)
    American Society of Mechanical Engineers
    English Ancestry


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