Saturday, December 19, 2015

# 7 Genealogy is what I do: GGGGrandpa Keith

John Keith arrived in Indiana before it was a state in the early 1800s. His name appears in 1807 in Dearborn County. He married Ellenor Peak sometime before 1814 when their son Nathan P. Keith was born. I think the P. probably stands for Peak (his mother's maiden name) so he was named for his grandfather Nathan Peak who was a Revolutionary War Veteran. When John came to Indiana he apparently had 5 siblings that came at the same time. His brothers Nicholas and William purchased land warrants right next to John's land warrant in what later became York Twp, Switzerland County, Indiana. John and Ellenor had 10 children as far as I can tell. After Ellenor died in 1749, John married his brother Nicholas's widow, Elizabeth. John died in 1863 and is buried on his land. His is the only gravestone still standing, but there were apparently others buried there as well, including Ellenor. Census records name both Maryland and Pennsylvania as his birth place. He was probably born around 1790, because his gravestone says he was aged 73 at death.
John's son, Nathan, was married to Nancy Sisson on August 27, 1839. They had 4 children:
John Wesley Keith born in 1840, Hiram Wilson Keith born in 1844, Harriet Ellen Keith born in 1847, and Mary A. Keith born in 1849. In 1850,
According to the 1850 Mortality Schedule, Nathan drowned in the Ohio River in May. It is too early for a death certificate and no probate record or will has been located. I have also looked for an obituary or even a news article about his death, without success. I would like to know what Nathan was doing in the Ohio River! Actually there are a lot of things I would like to know about this family. Where did they really come from? Were they simply farmers? Did they attend a local church somewhere nearby? and the list goes on.