America's Most Inbred Family Has Been Making Their Own Headstones to Bury Dead in Their Private Virginia Cemetery
The Whittaker family is famously known as America's most inbred family. According to Daily Mail, the Whittaker siblings are the descendants of two sets of first cousins who got married, sparking a chain of incest in the family.
It has now been revealed that the Whittaker family has their own private cemetery, Gordon Cemetery in Pearisburg, Virginia, which has around 30 graves of their relatives. Among the tombs of the graveyard are ones belonging to John and Gracie Whittaker, the first cousins who are the parents of the famous Ray, Betty, Lorene, and Larry who have been featured in a number of documentaries and news articles. The Sun reports that the Whittaker clan shot to worldwide fame after a photographer named Mark Laita snapped them for his book, Created Equal, in 2004.
In 2020, Laita returned to the family in Virginia, but this time he made a video of the family, which went viral. The video was titled Inbred Family - The Whittakers, and since then it has amassed over 29 million views on YouTube. It showcases the family's older generations living in a small town in the Appalachian region, working at their father's farm. The video also highlights how the Whittakers were struggling to make ends meet in their small house with their several dogs. The Whittaker family is British by descent and initially included Ray, Lorraine, Timmy (their only cousin), Freddie, and an unnamed sister.
According to The Daily Star, their common graveyard is some 55 miles away from the family home in Odd. One family-run funeral chapel based in Beckley has been providing funeral services for the family, with obituaries for several of the deceased relatives appearing on their website. The chapel said: “The Whittakers always paid us what we agreed to. We would take them down to a little family cemetery in Virginia and bury them there. Someone in the family they make their own headstones out of concrete.”
Many of the homemade headstones have spelling mistakes. The source added: “Whenever we had a funeral for them the entire staff knew what we were dealing with, and also the family members who went to church and had jobs, their church members would come and help with the service.”
Only their mother, Gracie in the direct family has a professionally made headstone; their father, John has a floral arrangement spelling "Dad" on display. The Whittakers have been creating their own remedial concrete headstones since the '70s for family members who pass away. When asked about the graveyard, Betty Whittaker said, "We don't go much."
A neighbor of the cemetery also said: "I've had this land since 2007, and I've only seen someone come once or twice. It was really overgrown, and then a year or so ago one guy came and cleared it all up, tidied it and put the sign up for Gordon Cemetary." He continued, "Some of the headstones have been made by the family, you can tell which ones. They just wrote out the names and then filled them with concrete, it's why some of them have backwards letters and numbers. It's sad really. Some of them, which are older, have better headstones but the majority of the family just have the homemade concrete ones which have stones in."