Walter W. Whitfield, Sr.

WALTER W. WHITFIELD, SR., one of the most prominent and widely known farmers of Waterford township, Oakland County, residing on a finely cultivated farm of 290 acres in sections 8 and 17, on Whitfield Lake, was born on his present farm, September 17, 1839, and has been identified with the agricultural interests of the township all his life. He is a son of William and Sarah (Wigg) Whitfield, both natives of England, where the former was born in June, 1810.

James Whitfield, the grandfather of our subject, came to Michigan prior to his death. His children were: William, Walter, Thomas, James, Daniel, Elizabeth, Mary Ann and Jane.

William Whitfield removed from Hampshire, England, with his wife and one daughter and came to Michigan to select a permanent home. The well watered lands of Oakland County immediately appealed to him, as in his Hampshire home he had been obliged to buy the water he used. Hence in 1836 he purchased an 80-acre farm, beautifully situated on the shores of the lake. A small frame house had been built there and this served as a residence. He put forth every energy in the clearing of his land, and added to his original purchase until he had accumulated 600 acres which he left to his children. He raised grains principally and also good stock. William Whitfield was a man of the highest integrity and held the esteem of all who knew him, and being a man of genial, lovable disposition, he made warm friends of the neighbors who, in the course of time, gathered in the vicinity and with him assisted in the development of that choice part of the county. In political belief he was a Democrat. Religiously he was an Episcopalian. He married Sarah Wigg, who was a daughter of Thomas Wigg, a native of England, who died at the age of 97 years. Three children were born to this union, Mrs. Ellen Boss, of Flint, Michigan; Thomas W., who resides on a neighboring farm in Waterford township; and Walter W., our subject, who has the homestead.

Walter W. Whitfield has been a farmer all of his active life, and has engaged extensively in the raising of stock and cattle, keeping 40 head of Durham cattle and Hampshire and Shropshire sheep. For a number of years the premium tickets have been given to his exhibits at the county fairs. He has also raised a goodly number of fine horses. His interests have been principally centered in the cultivation of his land and his careful management has resulted in the raising of fine crops. Mr. Whitfield's property is very valuable and he enjoys all the comforts and advantages possible to the prosperous and progressive farmer.

Mr. Whitfield married Kezia Prismall, who was born in England, and they have a family of four children, namely: Deborah Ellen, Sarah Elizabeth, Daniel and Jesse William. The family belongs to the Protestant Episcopal Church. In politics Mr. Whitfield is a Democrat. For the past eight years he has shown his interest in educational affairs by serving as a member of the School Board.

Last Reviewed: 10/29/2020 MR