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COLBERT COUNTY, ALABAMA
BIOGRAPHIES

ARTHUR HENLEY KELLER


ARTHUR HENLEY KELLER, was born February 5, 1836, near Tuscumbia, and is a son of David and Mary Fairfax (Moore) Keller.

He was reared and educated in Tuscumbia, where he also received instructions from Governor Lindsay. At the age of nineteen years he entered the law department of the University of Virginia, and when twenty-two years of age received his license to practice from Gov. A. B. Moore, who was then circuit judge. In November, 1861, he enlisted as a private in the Confederate army. He was detailed as a quartermaster-sergeant under Dr. D. R. Lindsay, of the Twenty-seventh Alabama, stationed at Fort Henry. He had charge of the stores, and after they were destroyed at Florence, he was assigned temporarily to the staff of Gen. Sterling Wood. In July, 1862, he joined General Roddy’s cavalry as a private, and in September of that year rejoined his old regiment as quartermaster at Vicksburg, with which he remained until July, 1864, when he was made paymaster of General Roddy’s division of cavalry, a position he held to the close of the war.

When peace once more reigned supreme over the land, Captain Keller engaged in the receiving and forwarding business at Keller’s Landing until the courts were opened, when he practiced law until 1874. In December of that year, he purchased the North Alabamian, and was its editor ten years. In July 1885, he was appointed United States Marshal for the Northern District of Alabama, and in June, 1886, was confirmed by the Senate.

Captain Keller was married November 12, 1867, to Mrs. Sarah E. Rosser, daughter of William Simpson, a well-known commission merchant at Memphis. She died in March, 1877, leaving two sons. In July, 1878, Captain Keller led to the alter Kate Adams, daughter of General Charles W. Adams, of Memphis, and to this union have been born two children, Helen Adams and Mildred Campbell; the older lost her hearing and sight when but eighteen months old, and is now being educated by Miss Annie Sullivan, from Perkins Institute for Blind at Boston.

Captain Keller and wife are members of the Presbyterian Church, and he is a member of the Knights of Honor and the A. O. U. W. The Captain has never solicited political preferment, but represented his party as a delegate to the St. Louis Convention in 1876, and also as a delegate at large to the Cincinnati Convention in 1880.

The father of our subject was born in Hagertown [sic], Md., in 1788, where he received a good education. He migrated to Knoxville, Tenn., where he entered mercantile business, hauling his goods in wagons twice a year from Philadelphia, generally making the trip on horseback. In 1820 he removed to Alabama, locating near Tuscumbia, where he remained until his death, which occurred in 1837. He was engaged at farming until one year before his death, when he became superintendent of the Tuscumbia & Decatur Railway. He was a member of the Presbyterian church, and in politics was a staunch Whig. He reared seven sons and three daughters. The Kellers came originally from Switzerland to America in the person of Caspar Keller, the grandfather of our subject. He came to this country during colonial days and settled in Maryland. He reared a large family, descendants of whom can be found principally in Maryland, Virginia, Missouri and North Alabama.

The mother of our subject was born in Rockbridge County, Va., in 1796. Her father, Col. Alexander Moore, was an aide to General LaFayette at the surrender of Yorktown, and she was a second cousin of General Robert E. Lee. The Moore family were wealthy planters of Virginia. They trace their lineage to Sir Thomas Moore of England, and were among the first settlers in Virginia. They were communicants of the Episcopal Church.

[SOURCE: Northern Alabama Historical and Biographical. Illustrated. Smith and De Land, Birmingham, Ala. 1888., p. 433] Typed for inclusion here by Linda Ledlow.
 


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