Derby has a rich history in the U.S. diplomacy as evidenced by Ebeneezer Bassett, Davic Humphreys, and Shelton. The class of 1922 for the Derby Hall of Fame adds to that distinguished list with William Whitney, Deputy U.S. Counsel to Bermuda.
The Whitney family was well established in Derby and were prosperous in the import business that was centered in the Lehman Stone house on the east side of town along the Naugatuck River. His parents were Archibald and Nancy Brewer Whitney and he was born on December 16, 1821 in New York City. William Whitney owned a jewelry store on Main Street in Nathan's Hall which was a landmark building in the Borough of Birmingham and one of the last buildings demolished on Main Street.
On December 10, 1872, Whitney was appointed as the Deputy U.S. Consul to Bermuda and officially recognized by the government there on March 28, 1873. He married Frances Hill on January 28, 1875 and Bermuda became their adopted home though we know he visited Derby at least once more in 1881 just prior to making a one year tour of England and the continent.
He was known for his charitable work in Bermuda and especially for supporting the Whitney Institute which still serves as a middle school in Bermuda.
He died in Bermuda on December 26, 1890.