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Male, born 1857-02-10, died 1929-07-27

Associated with the firm network

Whidden and Lewis, Architects

Professional History


Draftsman, McKim, Mead and White, Architects, New York, NY, 1881-c. 1885; Partner, [William E.] Chamberlin and Whidden, Architects, Boston, MA, c. 1886-1888. The R.L. Polk and Company's Portland City Directory of 1889 (p. 565) indicated that Whidden was an arthitect [sic] in charge of Portland Hotel n w corner 6th and Yamhill, res. 261 11th."

Partner, Whidden and [Ion] Lewis, Architects, Portland, OR, 1889-1929; The Whidden and Lewis firm occupied Rooms #1209-1213 of the Wilcox Building in Portland in 1914, but was listed in only in Room #1209 in 1917. (See Portland, Oregon City Directory, 1914, p. 1478 and Portland, Oregon City Directory, 1917, p. 1212.)



B.S. Arch., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA, 1877; Dipl., École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris, France, 1877-1881.



Whidden first came West in 1881-1882 accompanying Charles Follen McKim (1847-1909) of the firm of the New York City-based architectural firm of McKim, Mead and White, for whom he was working. McKim and Whidden were supervising preparations for two hotels (one in Portland, OR, the other in Tacoma, WA), and a railroad station (in Portland) for Henry Villard and the Northern Pacific Railroad. He apparently liked the West Coast, as he returned to it c. 1888. Before this, however, he spent the mid-1880s in Boston, MA, as a Partner in the firm of Chamberlain and Whidden. Whidden was not listed in R.L. Polk and Company's Portland City Directory of 1888, but was listed in that of the following year, residing at 261 11th.

He formed his partnership with Ion Lewis in 1889, practicing in Portland from 1889-1929.

In 1900, Whidden, his wife, four children and two servant resided at 153 20th Street (probably SE 20th Avenue) in Portland. Their two servants were M. Flanigan (born c. 07/1860 in Ireland) and a man listed only as "Louie" in the 1910 US Census (born 08/1877 in China). (See, Source Citation Year: 1900; Census Place: Portland Ward 2, Multnomah, Oregon; Roll: 1348; Page: 4B; Enumeration District: 0043; FHL microfilm: 1241349, accessed 05/24/2017.)

Ten years later, the 1910 US Census did not record any children living with William and Alice. They retained only one servant Lang Leung, (born c. 1865 in China), in their house on Riverside Drive in Riverdale, south of Portland. From at least 1916 until 1920, William and Alice resided at 171 King Street, living without servants, in a Portland apartment building. (See, Source Citation Year: 1920; Census Place: Portland, Multnomah, Oregon; Roll: T625_1499; Page: 2A; Enumeration District: 16; Image: 124, accessed 05/24/2017.) During 1914-1915, they occupied Unit #2, moving to Unit #1 in 1916-1917.

He died at the Mallory Hotel, Portland, OR, at the age of 72.


Whidden's father worked as a building contractor and served as a Suffolk County [MA] Commissioner.


Whidden married Alice McLoughlin Wygant (born 04/11/1861 in OR-d. 03/04/1941 in San Diego, CA), in Portland, OR, in 1884.


He and Alice had four children. Their first children were twins, Rae and Mae, (born 08/1885 in Portland, OR). The next oldest was Austin C. Whidden (born 08/1890 in Portland, OR), and the youngest, Thomas M. Whidden.

Thomas Marvin Whidden (born 09/09/1892 in Portland, OR-,d. 02/08/1986 in Alameda, CA), who married Linda Brinyana Jockers (born 12/15/1906-d. 01/19/1950 in Alameda, CA) on 09/24/1930 in Alameda, CA. In 1942, Thomas worked for the Pacific Bridge Company in Alameda, CA. (See, Source Citation The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System, 1926-1975; Record Group Number: 147, accessed 05/24/2017.)

The geneaology web site, Find A, indicated that the Whiddens had had six children: "He married Alice McLoughlin Wygant in 1884, with whom he had 6 children, 3 sets of twins, according to an early biographical piece (1910). Two died as young children, another son, Dr. Rae W. Whidden, a graduate of Harvard, died in 1918. He had one daughter, May, who must have preceded him in death as his notice reads that he was survived by sons, Thomas and Austin, and wife Alice." US Census records of 1900 and 1910 stated that he and his wife had had only four children.

Associated Locations

  • Boston, MA (Architect's Birth)
    Boston, MA

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  • Portland, OR (Architect's Death)
    Portland, OR

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PCAD id: 4337