Articles written by Branch Members

Christian Keller

The first listing of Christian Keller who emigrated from Germany is 1 July 1710 on the Hunter Lists in New York. He came with his wife Anna Margaretha, son Conrad, daughters Anna Christina and Anna Magaretha and possibly one other child. Christian died in the fall of 1710 in New York and his family moved to the North part of Livingston Manor, Albany County where Margaret was listed as a debtor in 1721 and 1722.

Conrad was a soldier from Hunterstown in 1711 with the Palatine volunteers to Canada and is listed as a freeholder in the Northpart of Livingston in 1720. His signature can be found in the Livingston Papers. Conrad married Maria Barbara Propper and they had ten children, the second being a son named Christian who was baptised at about 3 weeks old on 11 August 1726 in passing form "Theerbasch". Christian was above Posten Kill in Captain Van Aernam’s Caompany in 1767. He married Elizabeth Backus and had 7 children. Four of these came to Canada with their families. Their son Frederick is my Loyalist ancestor. He was baptized in Albany Dutch Refomed Church in 1757.

Christian through age and other infirmity he was unable to take an active part in the Revolution any farther than assisting Loyalists leaving the States to join the British Army. Frederick came up from Hoosick on 15 October 1780 to St. John’s. He served in Major James Rogers Corps, King's Rangers. under Captain Henry Richards for 3 years 9 months. He was from Albany, height 5' 10", age 28 years 6 months on 21 January 1783

Frederick settled in Fredericksburgh Township and had four wives and about 18 children. His fifth child by his second wife Hannah was baptized Samuel on 1 January 1790.

Samuel married Rosannah Warner daughter of Levi in 1807, served in the Lenox militia in 1812, and died in July 1819. Samuel’s son Peter Samuel obtained his father’s land grant as a son of UE and moved north in 1840 to settle near Croydon in Camden Township. He and his wife Clarinda Schryver are said to have had 24 children most of whom never lived to eat at the kitchen table. I have found the names of sixteen of them.

Their fourth child John Ferguson had twelve children by his first wife, including triplets. He lost his wife, Eliza Bennett, daughter Addie and one of the triplets to an epidemic in 1890. Family lore tells that he rode over to a neighbour’s and found all dead there except one little girl. He picked her up and carried her home on his horse. I have yet to prove this.

According to his obituary he was a man of remarkably strong personality as most people are aware who had the good fortune, or otherwise, to make his acquaintance. He was also a man of strong convictions, marked intelligence and sound judgement

by Maralynn Wilkinson UE