John Wheelock Adams1,2,3

ID# 9459, (1815 - 1897)
FatherJohn Wheelock7
MotherPenelope Comee7 (say 1780 - 3 Jun 1815)
Adoptive fatherMoses Adams6 (abt 12 Mar 1781 - 10 Jun 1850)
Adoptive motherRuth Perry4,5,6 (23 Oct 1781 - 19 Aug 1869)

Key Events:

Birth: 3 Jun 1815, Hopkinton, Massachusetts8,9,10
Marriage: Margaret Sherill Cobb, 185311,12,13
Marriage: Laura Bowen, 27 Apr 187514,15
Divorce Filing: Laura Bowen, 15 Mar 1880, Monroe Co.16
Death: 5 Jun 1897, Kansas City, Missouri17,18
Burial: 20 Feb 1904, Mount Hope Cemetery, Rochester, New York19

Spouse:Margaret Sherill Cobb (1825 - 19 Nov 1867)
     No children

Adopted Children:

John seems to have "adopted," perhaps not formally, several boys. Those known are Charles, who adopted the Adams surname and was later recognized as John's son, and Edwin, who is known only by his appearance in the 1875 census. Another boy, listed as Mortimer Adams, age 10, in the 1860 census, may have been another.39,40,41,42
  • Charles Wisner36 (abt 1855 - 3 Aug 1899)
  • Edwin Rhudolph30 (abt 1864 - )

Spouse: Laura Bowen (11 Apr 1820 - 13 Apr 1891)
     No children

ChartsDescendants of Gideon Cobb

Copyright Notice

Narrative:

     John Wheelock Adams was born on 3 Jun 1815 in Hopkinton, Massachusetts.8,9,10 He was born with the name John Adams Wheelock, but used the surname of his adoptive parents throughout his life.8
     John was adopted by Moses Adams and Ruth Perry of Holliston, apparently as an infant. His mother had died in childbirth. How they were related to him, if at all, is unknown.6,20
     He was probably the male under age 10 listed in the household of his adoptive father, Moses Adams, in the 1820 Federal Census of Holliston, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts.21 He was probably the male age 15 to 20 listed in the household of his adoptive father in the 1830 Federal Census of Holliston, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts.
     John moved to Rochester, New York, about 1838.22

Moving to Rochester --- Text Stolen from ReigelRidge.com !! ---


     John was named an heir in the will of Moses Adams, his adoptive father, dated 20 Nov 1849 in Holliston, in which John was left, together with the husbands of his three adoptive sisters, all his tools, lumber and stock. John and his three adoptive sisters each were to receive one fourth of all their father's real estate and remaining personal property, with the income of the real estate to go to his adoptive mother during her life.23
     John married first Margaret Sherill Cobb, daughter of Gideon Cobb and Roxana Worden, in 1853.11,12,13
     John and Margaret appeared on the 1855 State Census of Rochester, Monroe Co., New York, enumerated 16 Jun 1855, in the boarding house of D. M. Hall and his three children, with seven other boarders and a servant.24
     John and Margaret appeared on the 1860 Federal Census of Rochester, Monroe Co., New York, enumerated 4 Aug 1860, reporting real estate valued at $2,000. Mortimer Adams, age 10, relationship unknown, Anna Pratt, age 23, a niece, and Jenny Shaw, an 18-year-old servant, were listed as living with them.3
     John and Margaret appeared on the 1865 State Census of Rochester, Monroe Co., Massachusetts, enumerated 5 Jun 1865, reporting they lived in a frame house valued at $2,500. His mother was listed as living with them, as were Anna Pratt, a niece, and Hattie Scamp, a 16-year-old servant.25
     His wife died on 19 Nov 1867.26,11,27
     John apparently "adopted" Charles Wisner between 1865 and 1870. This seems to have not been a formal adoption, as the term "foster-father" was later used to describe his relationship to the boy.28 However the boy used his foster-father's name after that, being known as Charles W. Adams, and they referred to each other as father and son the rest of their lives.
     John appeared on the 1870 Federal Census of Rochester, Monroe Co., New York, enumerated 22 Jul 1870, as the superintendent of the truant school. His foster-son Charles was listed as living with him, as were seven teachers, cooks, and gardeners and 86 inmates. Also listed, as if his wife, was Margart Adams, age 45, but she had been dead for over two years. It appears this was in error.29
John Wheelock Adams
from The Kansas City Journal1

     John married second Laura Bowen, daughter of Dr. Ebenezor Bowen, on 27 Apr 1875.14,15
     John and Laura appeared on the 1875 State Census, enumerated 17 Jun 1875, reporting they lived in a frame house valued at $4,000. His adoptive son Edwin was listed as living with him, as here her daughter by her prior marriage, Lillie Klinch, a 16-year-old domestic servant, Anna Doser, and George Mason, a farm laborer.30
     He was a teacher in Rochester for many years at School No. 12. When a new schoolhouse was completed in 1857 he became principal there. He became superintendent of the House for Idle and Truant Children in 1865. While teaching he specialized in history and botany.31,32,33,34,35

Moving to Kansas City --- Text Stolen from ReigelRidge.com !! ---


     John moved to Kansas City, Missouri, in 1879.36,1
     Laura filed for divorce from John on 15 Mar 1880 in Monroe Co., Supreme Court. The divorce was evidently granted, as they do not appear together after that, and his several obituaries mention his first marriage but not this one, though hers does mention both this and her prior marriage. She continued to use the Adams surname the rest of her life.16
     John appeared on the 1880 Federal Census of Kansas City, Jackson Co., Missouri, at 1109 Main St., enumerated 1 Jun 1880. His foster-son Charles was listed as living with him.37
     After moving to Kansas City he invested heavily in real estate, both business and suburban property. His investments proved judicious and he became quite wealthy. He built the Adams House, opposite the Union Depot, and also owned property in Topeka, Kansas.1,38
     After retiring from active educational work he traveled extensively and collected botanical specimens from around the world, supposedly assembling one of the most complete collection in the west at the time.1
     John died on 5 Jun 1897 in Kansas City, Missouri, at age 82, in his apartments at the Victoria hotel, after an illness of three weeks.17,18 He was buried on 20 Feb 1904 in Mount Hope Cemetery, Rochester, New York.19

Citations

  1. [S7823] John Wheelock Adams obituary, The Kansas City Journal.
  2. [S7815] D. M. Hall household, 1855 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 4, shows name as John W. Adams.
  3. [S7810] John W. Adams household, 1860 U.S. Census, Monroe Co., New York.
  4. [S7811] John W. Adams household, 1865 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 14, shows her as his mother.
  5. [S500] Findagrave.com, online, memorial # 7502757, Ruth Perry Adams, includes tombstone photo showing her as his mother.
  6. [S7828] Moses Adams, Middlesex Co. Massachusetts loose probate records, will, 20 Nov 1849, shows the boy as his adopted son.
  7. [S7825] Vital Records of Hopkinton Massachusetts, pg 201, birth record for John Adams Wheelock.
  8. [S7825] Vital Records of Hopkinton Massachusetts, pg 201, birth record for John Adams Wheelock, shows date.
  9. [S500] Findagrave.com, online, memorial # 7502733, John W Adams, shows date, with year as 1814, and includes tombstone photo showing same and town, as Westboro, and state.
  10. [S7823] John Wheelock Adams obituary, The Kansas City Journal, shows date, with year as 1815, town, as Holliston, and state.
  11. [S2607] Cleveland and Cleveland, Genealogy of the Cleveland and Cleaveland Families, vol 1 pg 46, shows year.
  12. [S7815] D. M. Hall household, 1855 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 4, shows them apparently living as husband and wife.
  13. [S7810] John W. Adams household, 1860 U.S. Census, Monroe Co., New York, shows them apparently living as husband and wife.
  14. [S7818] Laura Klinck Adams obituary, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, shows date.
  15. [S7819] John W. Adams household, 1875 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 16, shows married.
  16. [S7820] Legal notice; Laura B. Adams vs John W. Adams, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, 5 Jul 1880.
  17. [S7823] John Wheelock Adams obituary, The Kansas City Journal, shows date, location, and illness.
  18. [S500] Findagrave.com, online, memorial # 7502733, John W Adams, shows date and includes tombstone photo showing same and city and state.
  19. [S2444] Mount Hope Cemetery, burial records, Jan 1893 to Dec 1906 - Ad.
  20. [S7825] Vital Records of Hopkinton Massachusetts, pg 459, death record for Mrs. Wheelock, citing Christ Church record, shows death 3 Jun 1815.
  21. [S7829] Moses Adams household, 1820 U.S. Census, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts.
  22. [S7815] D. M. Hall household, 1855 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 4, shows he had lived in city 17 years.
  23. [S7828] Moses Adams, Middlesex Co. Massachusetts loose probate records, will, 20 Nov 1849.
  24. [S7815] D. M. Hall household, 1855 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 4.
  25. [S7811] John W. Adams household, 1865 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 14.
  26. [S2608] "Tombstone Inscriptions from Section I - Mt. Hope Cemetery," GenWeb Monroe County NY, shows date.
  27. [S2444] Mount Hope Cemetery, burial records, Aug 1860 to Dec 1881 - Ad, shows she was interred 22 Nov 1867.
  28. [S7817] "$100,000 Looking for an Owner," Republican Watchman, 1 Feb 1901.
  29. [S7813] John Adams household, 1870 U.S. Census, Monroe Co., New York.
  30. [S7819] John W. Adams household, 1875 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 16.
  31. [S7824] John W. Adams obituary, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, shows schools where he taught and dates.
  32. [S7815] D. M. Hall household, 1855 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 4, shows occupation as teacher.
  33. [S7811] John W. Adams household, 1865 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 14, shows occupation as teacher.
  34. [S7813] John Adams household, 1870 U.S. Census, Monroe Co., New York, shows occupation as Sup. truant school.
  35. [S7823] John Wheelock Adams obituary, The Kansas City Journal, shows he was a teacher and many years superintendent of Rochester public schools, and specialty.
  36. [S7812] John W. Adams obituary, The Kansas City Star.
  37. [S7816] Doctor Adams household, 1880 U.S. Census, Jackson Co., Missouri.
  38. [S7812] John W. Adams obituary, The Kansas City Star, shows teacher in Rochester, investing in Kansas City.
  39. [S7817] "$100,000 Looking for an Owner," Republican Watchman, 1 Feb 1901, shows John as Charles' foster-father and names John Wisner as his birth father.
  40. [S7812] John W. Adams obituary, The Kansas City Star, shows Dr. Charles W. Adams as his son and only heir.
  41. [S7819] John W. Adams household, 1875 New York State Census, Monroe Co., New York, Rochester ward 16, shows Edwin as his adopted son.
  42. [S7810] John W. Adams household, 1860 U.S. Census, Monroe Co., New York, lists Mortimer Adams, age 10, but shows no relationships.