Family Ties


My great-great-great-grandparents were Charles Luke Keith Sr. (better known as Luke) and Hannah Willcutt. Their children were Martha (sometimes referred to as Patty), Harvey, Catherine, Charles Luke Jr. (also known as Luke) and John Wesley Keith (who was adopted).

My great-great-grandparents (Charles Luke Keith Jr. — who was also known as Luke — and his wife Sarah Crawford) had the following children: Ethan, Nancy, William, Hannah, Louese and James. Luke also had two children by his first wife, Minerva Payson (see Crittenden Family below): Lois and Henry.

Many of the letters posted here are letters that Luke Jr. and Sarah received through the years or are letters that their descendants saved and allowed me to scan and transcribe. This page will attempt to show how those other families are related to the Keiths.


Luke and Sarah’s daughter (and my great-grandmother) was Nancy Keith. She married Henry Brown (better known as Hank). Nancy and Hank Brown had five children: twin boys who died in childbirth, Claude, Lela and Bess.

Hank’s parents were Ambrose and Matilda (Allen) Brown. Matilda’s parents were Jedediah and Mary (Pearsall) Allen. They had 12 children. Matilda’s sister, Julia Allen, wrote some of the letters included in this blog.


Luke was engaged to Jerusha Crittenden, but then Minerva Payson came to town and Luke broke his engagement to Jerusha and married Minerva on April 23, 1839. Luke and Minerva had two children: Lois and Henry. Minerva died just four years later on August 29, 1843. He then married his first love, Jerusha, on July 25, 1847; however, she died just a little over a year later, on September 23, 1848. Luke then married Sarah Crawford on November 14, 1849. According to family stories, in the evenings Luke would go to the cemetery and play his violin at the graves of his first two wives. While there are quite a few letters from the Crittendens, little is known about that branch of the family and research is ongoing.


Luke and Sarah’s youngest daughter was Louese Keith. She married Daniel D. Harris (better known as D.D. or just D). D’s parents were Daniel D. Harris Sr. and Adaline Ralph. D and Louese had Jay, Addie “LaVerne”, Charles “Floyd”, Pearl “Leone” and Sarah “Mildred.”


Luke’s sister, Catherine Keith, married first Ethan Bradley and then second, George Clinton Lee. Catherine’s children were Helen Bradley, James and Lucy Lee. Catherine’s second husband, George Lee, was Catherine’s cousin, being the son of Rhoda Keith and Charles Lee. Rhoda Keith was Charles Luke Keith Sr’s. sister. To make things even more complicated, many of the Lee men were Mormons who had several wives.


Luke and Sarah’s youngest son was James Keith. He married Cora Meredith. Cora’s parents were Walter “Burton” Meredith and Malvina Johnson. The DEAN, RICE and BECKWITH families were all Cora’s siblings’ in-law families.


See the summary on the Crittenden Family above. Again, not much is known about this branch of the family and research is ongoing.


George Tomlinson married Marion Sprague, the daughter of James Sprague Jr. and Martha “Patty” Keith (the sister of Luke Jr.). Research continues as well on this branch of the family.