Posted By:Harry Thomas
Subject:Info Request on Fess Whitaker's Spanish American War Service
Post Date:October 04, 2006 at 12:36:25
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Forum:Spanish-American War Forum
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Hi. I am researching the life of Fess Whitaker, a Kentuckian who published an autobiography called HISTORY OF CORPORAL FESS WHITAKER in 1918. In the book, he says he served in The Spanish American War and fought alongside (and befriended) Teddy Roosevelt. I am trying to confirm the details of Whitaker's Spanish American War service.

Whitaker was born 1880 in Knott County, Kentucky and claims (in the book) that he joined Company L, Fourth Kentucky Volunteers, but at least one online roster of the 4th Kentucky Volunteers I have found contains no mention of Whitaker. Also, Whitaker talks about shipping out to Cuba in 1899 and fighting with Roosevelt that year, but it's my understanding that the war was over (and U.S. troops withdrawn from Cuba) by Jan. 1899.

But he must have met and befriended Roosevelt at some point, because Whitaker's New York Times obituary (he died in 1927) named him as a friend of Roosevelt's.

At this point, any information anyone can provide about Whitaker's Spanish American War service would be greatly appreciated. I am trying to fact-check the dates and details he provides in his autobiography.

Thank You,
-- Harry Thomas