Sunday, July 21, 2013

Census Sunday - Keefe Family in Clinton County, Ohio

I posted yesterday about a possible connection between my Creeden family and the Keefe family in Clinton County, Ohio and Clondrohid, County Cork, Ireland. From the 1915 History of Clinton County, the Keefe family came to America in 1858 with a destination of Ohio. I expected to find the parents John and Johanna in the 1860 census, but didn't find an obvious match.

Hannah Keeff in 1860 Clinton County census
In the 1860 census for Wilmington in Clinton County, Hannah Keeff is a weekly laborer from Ireland. Hannah is the right age for the daughter of John and Johanna, so this could be a match.

Keeffs in the 1860 Clinton County census
I didn't find an exact match for John and Johanna, so it's possible this is another Keefe family. The ages for John, Tim, and James look close, but there is a Catharine in this family instead of Johanna.

Keefes in the 1870 Clinton County census
I had a little better luck with the 1870 census. Timothy Keefe is living with John and Johanna and the ages look close. They were indexed in as Knife! I had thought this would be an easy name to search for, but I'm finding that the spellings vary a lot. I wasn't able to find a birth or baptism record for Timothy on the site, but this Timothy would have been born about 1840. I found records for Julia and Peter Keefe, both born to John and Johanna in March 1840, but haven't found any further trace of Peter. Could Peter and Timothy be the same person?

James Keefe in the 1870 Clinton County census
James Keefe is living with his wife Ann Shea in the 1870 census and they have a 3 year old daughter Julia and a newborn son John. According to the History of Clinton County, James served in the Civil War, so that's another area to investigate. Also of interest is that Daniel and Catherine Creden are on the same census page as James in Liberty Township.

Keefes in the 1880 Clinton County census
In the 1880 census, Timothy is living with his wife Bridget, his mother Joanna, a nephew Dennis Casey and a niece Mary Casey. I don't know yet if the Casey family was related to Timothy or his wife Bridget. According to his death record, John died on March 16, 1873 and was born in 1803, but I didn't find a will for John in the Ohio Probate Records for Clinton County. James and his family are now living near Timothy in Wayne Township and he has two more daughters, Mary and Hannah. Also on that page are several members of the Matson family that are related to Timothy Creeden's wife, Mary Ann Matson.

Timothy Keefe in the 1900 Clinton County census

In the 1900 census, Timothy is living alone. He is widowed and his age is given as 65 with a year of birth of 1835. The year of immigration is unknown.

James Keefe in the 1900 Clinton County census
James and his family are living in the Union Township in 1900. James and Ann have been married 34 years and have 5 living children. James' year of immigration is given as 1858.

James Keefe in the 1910 Clinton County census
In 1910, James and Ann are living with their children Honora and James Jr. in Wilmington. Honora owns a milliner shop and James Jr. is working as a telegraph operator for the railroad office. James' year of immigration is given as 1856 and he is a naturalized citizen. James died on January 3, 1916. I didn't find a death record for Timothy, but didn't find him in the 1910 census. James Jr. and Honora didn't marry and were living together in the 1930 and 1940 census records. James Jr. continued to work for the railroad, while Honora ran her millinery shop.


  • 1860-1940 United States Federal Census [database on-line]
  • History of Clinton County, Ohio by Albert J. Brown, published in 1915 by B.F. Bowen & Co.
  • "Ohio, Deaths and Burials, 1854-1997," index, FamilySearch
  • and Ohio Department of Health. Ohio, Deaths, 1908-1932, 1938-2007 [database on-line]

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