C. S. KEATING. Although he has long since passed his allotted three score years and ten, and has now entered his eightieth year, this well-beloved old gentleman of Clyde, Sandusky county, is at this writing as erect in figure, as quick in action, as a man of half his years. His eyesight is keen, and he is yet an active follower of Nimrod and of Walton. Each summer he visits the haunts of noble game, and the favorite nooks of the trout and the muskallonge, while his pleasant home is adorned with numerous and valuable trophies of the chase. In this respect it resembles rather some old baronial hall than a modern dwelling house, and for each trophy Mr. Keating has an interesting story.
He was born in Main [sic] April 8, 1816, son of John and Elizabeth (Mathews) Keating, both also natives of the “Pine Tree State.” John Keating was a man of earnest convictions. About 1819 he with his wife and family made the long and tiring journey from Maine to Ohio, settling near Zanesville, where he farmed and followed the trade of millwright. In 1825 he moved to a farm in Clinton township, Seneca county. There was then but one frame house in Tiffin. He cut a wagon road from Tiffin to his little log cabin in the woods two and a half miles away, and soon after found employment as a ship carpenter at Sandusky, Huron and Fremont, following that trade for ten years or longer. He was also a Baptist minister, and preached the Gospel at frequent intervals from a sense of right, and not for emoluments, and each Sunday he made long trips on horseback through the mud and woods to fill these clerical appointments. He had nine children as follows: John M., who died at the old homestead after marriage; Joseph, a boss shipbuilder, who married and lived at Toledo, where he was accidentally killed at the age of fifty-six years; Edward and Edwin, who both died young; Capt. A. C. Keating, of Clyde; C. S., subject of this sketch; Henry A., who lives on the pike below Clyde; George L., residing on the old homestead near Tiffin; Louisa, who married Elias Jackson, and is now a widow, living in Indiana (Mr. Jackson died several years ago); Elizabeth, married to Charles Sloat, now living in California; and one child who died in Infancy.
C. S. Keating grew to manhood on the pioneer farm in Seneca county, receiving a scant education in the log school houses of that age. He paid for one term of instruction by chopping trees, and remembers that one tree which he tackled was too large for him, and he was obliged to call his father’s assistance in felling it. He remained on the home farm until twenty-two years of age, then entered the shipyard at Marblehead as carpenter; he followed this trade at Lorain, on the Black river, at Vermilion, Huron and Fremont, for about two years. On December 1, 1839, he was married to Miss Olive E. Butler, born near Rockland, Maine, August 29, 1822, a distant relative of Ben. Butler. She is the daughter of Brackett and Nancy (Mathews) Butler, the former of whom was of English ancestry, and by his wife Nancy had five children, as follows: Myra, wife of Samuel Russ, of Boston, Mass.; Lucy, who died at Clyde, the wife of Gilbert Perry; Olive; Marie, wife of Charles Bradbury; Amanda, now Mrs. Boston, of Boston, Mass. Mrs. Butler died in 1827, and Mr. Butler married again, by his second marriage rearing a family; he died in Indiana. Olive met her future husband while visiting in Ohio. Mr. Keating began housekeeping at Hedges Springs, Seneca county. He lived there six years, and followed his trade of ship carpenter at Fremont as well. He also cleared up some land in Adams township, Seneca county, and farmed there for several years; then bought timber land on the pike below Clyde, paying $14 per acre, and selling it for $80 per acre during the Civil war. At the close of the war he bought another farm. He lived on the place about six years, then moved to Clyde, where he now resides. To Mr. and Mrs. Keating were born four children, a brief record of whom is as follows: (1) Joseph B., born July 8, 1841, was educated in the Clyde schools and in a Commercial College at Cleveland, followed railroading and, subsequently, the jewelry business; he died at Huntington, Ind., February 25, 1889, leaving two children – Laura and Truman. (2) Alice K., the widow of William Weaver, is an instructor in the public schools at Huntington, Ind. (3) Russ, born October 29, 1853, is a traveling salesman at Fond du Lac, Wis., for the Diebold Safe & Lock Co.; he is married and has one child – Charles. (4) Walter L., born January 17, 1859, engaged in the safe business at La Crosse, Wis., is married and has one child – Florence. Mr. and Mrs. Keating celebrated their golden wedding in 1889. Mrs. Keating is an active member of the Methodist Church, and an earnest worker in the temperance cause. Her father was a Baptist from boyhood, and was a leader in the Church choir, having a cultured voice.
Mr. Keating has not yet lost his keen zest for the rod and fishing rod. He attributes his well-preserved eyesight and his unimpaired vitality, not so much to his hardy physique as to the excellent care he has taken of himself. The trophies of his skill which adorn his home recall the lines of Walter Scott, in “The Lady of the Lake:”
Here grins the wolf as when he died,
There hangs the wild cat’s brindled hide,
And all around, the walls to grace,
Hang trophies of the fight and chase.
In the year 1852 Mr. Keating became a Free Mason at Clyde, Ohio, joining Monticello Lodge No. 244. In politics he is non-partisan, with a predilection toward the Republican party. Conviction and principle dominate his ballot as well as his religion, and his relations to his fellow men. He is a genuine-hearted man, held in high esteem by all who know him.
Source: Commemorative Biographical Record of the Counties of Sandusky and Ottawa, Ohio: Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, and of Many of the Early Settled Families, published in 1896 by J. H. Beers & Co., Chicago. pp. 111-113. As found on Ancestry.com.