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Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs:

Index to All Families | Index to Families by County: Albany, Columbia, Fulton, Greene, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Warren, Washington

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[This information is from Vol. II, pp. 905-906 of Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs, edited by Cuyler Reynolds (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1911). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 929.1 R45. Some of the formatting of the original, especially in lists of descendants, may have been altered slightly for ease of reading.]

The family of Keeler, noted among the famous landlords and restaurateurs of this country, was founded in the United States by Daniel Keeler, who married Margaret Murphy, and has sons John and William Henry.

(II) William Henry, son of Daniel and Margaret (Murphy) Keeler, was born in Albany, New York, March 23, 1843. He was educated in the public schools of the city, and at the age of twenty began his long and prosperous career as a purveyor to public appetite and comfort. His first venture was an oyster house on Green street, Albany. He early learned the secret of pleasing his patrons, and "Keeler's," of the early day, was as well known and popular as at the present time. He continued in business on Green street for seven years, selling out to his brother John in 1871. Until 1884 he held high political positions in Albany city and county and was not engaged in other business. In 1884 he joined with his brother John and opened a restaurant at 56 State street. This partnership was soon dissolved, and in 1886 William H. Keeler purchased a building at 26 Maiden Lane, Albany, which he remodeled and converted into a modern restaurant. In 1890 the business had so increased that he purchased the present property, corner of Broadway and Maiden Lane, to which additions have been made until eight buildings are now included, fronting on three streets with a large annex on the south side of Broadway. Probably "Keeler's" is more widely known than any other hotel in the country, entertaining in hotel and restaurant not only the regular traveling public, but the thousands of tourists who make Albany a point to be visited as they either go or come on their summer vacations to the famous resorts of northern New York, New England and Canada. The hotel is run on the European plan, with a restaurant for both ladies and gentlemen located on the first and second floors. While Mr. Keeler is the head of his great business, he has practically retired, leaving the more arduous duties of management in the able hands of his sons. He is a life-long Democrat and in 1872 was elected alderman to represent the fourth ward of Albany. He succeeded himself in 1874, serving in the council four years. He was then elected street commissioner, serving five years, and in 1882 was elected sheriff of Albany county. He served the full term of three years and made an excellent official. In 1900-04 he was the candidate on the Democratic ticket for presidential elector. He married, in 1877, Catherine, daughter of Robert Taylor, of Albany; children: John D., William H. (2), Rufus P., Grace and Harriet.

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