Dr. H. Ward Keator

Biography courteously provided by Joyce Riedinger, Delaware County Coordinator.


DR. H. WARD KEATOR, a youthful, but already brilliantly successful physician of Griffin's Corners, in Middletown, N.Y., was born in the adjoining town of Roxbury, December 13, 1870, and is the son of Henry M. and Anna (Shoemaker) Keator. Great-grandfather Isaac Keator, who married Esther White, was one of the early settlers in Roxbury, to which place he came from Dutchess County. He purchased a small estate near the present village of Roxbury, which was a mere hamlet at that time; and here he reared a family of six children, - namely, Jacob, David, Harmon, Beers, Caroline, and Jason. Harmon, the third son, was born August 20, 1817, and was by occupation a farmer. He married Sarah, a daughter of B.J. Cross, one of the first settlers of West Kill, Greene County, and died on the 8th of April, 1852, leaving four children - George W., Homer B., Elizabeth, and Henry M.

Henry M. Keator displayed at an unusually early age that energy and courage which are almost always marked characteristics in the lives of those men who win success in their chosen occupations. At fourteen he began to earn his own living, driving teams for the farmers in the neighborhood; but, with the wise precaution which was one of nature's gifts, he set himself steadily to work to master the carpenter's trade. By industrious effort and close economy amassing enough money to buy a lot, he erected a house in Roxbury in 1874, where he has since lived. He married Miss Anna Shoemaker, a daughter of Martin and Louisa (Rifenburg) Shoemaker. The father of Mrs. Keator was a progressive farmer of Ashland, Greene County, who went West in his old age, and died in Nebraska. Henry M. Keator is a member of the Reformed church, and also a member of the Roxbury Coeur de Lion Lodge of Masons, No. 571. Dr. H. Ward Keator, the son of Henry and Anna (Shoemaker) Keator, and the original of this brief memoir, received a plain education in the schools of Roxbury, and acquired a knowledge of his profession at the Baltimore, Md., College of Physicians and Surgeons, where he took his degree on the 15th of April, 1892. He immediately began to practice medicine at Port Allegany, Pa., and in the course of two years had established himself as a successful physician.

At this time the death of Dr. Patterson, a noted medical practitioner at Griffin's Corners, left a fine opening in that community for an intelligent and competent physician and surgeon; and so it came about that Dr. H. Ward Keator found himself following his profession in the familiar haunts of his childhood surrounded by old friends and home associations. As regards his religious convictions, he is a member of the Reformed church; and taking an interest in politics, as all American citizens should, his political proclivities are toward the Republican party.


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