The earliest record of a likely Keith connection is the 1850 Forsyth County, Georgia census record. This shows a Joel M. Keith, 37 years (1st) and Joel M. (2nd) 3 years old. He was a carpenter with real estate valued at $200.00, born in South Carolina in 1813 and had, wife, Mary, born in South Carolina in 1805.
This must be William's Freeman Keith's grandfather. They had 4 children. Abormlem B. (male) born 1837, South Carolina, Nancy A. (Female) born 1842 Georgia, Sarah C. born 1844, Georgia. and Joel M., born 1847, Georgia. Joel M. (1st) must have migrated to Georgia after 1837. His first child was born in S. C. in 1837 and the second one in Georgia in 1842, Joel M. (2nd) was the 4th child, (born in Georgia, 1847).
Joel M. Keith (1st)
Joel M. Keith (2nd)
The 1850 census shows Joel M. (2nd) born 1847. The 1890 I.T. Census shows him born in 1840. The Bible indicated he was born in 1839.
The 1850 census must be wrong or we have the wrong Joel M. Keith. If as the Bible said, Joel married Nancy Jane in 1860, this Joel would have only been 13 years old. If he was born in 1839, he would have been 21 years old in 1860.
There are eight Keiths listed in the 1790 census records of South Carolina, nine in 1800, six in 1810 and four in the 1820 census record. One of these names may be connected with Joel M. Keith's family, in as much as he was born there in 1813, but I have not found the connection as yet.
The 1900 Indian Territory census states, William's father's name was Joel M. Keith, his mother was Susan Ann McClure 1/8 Indian. They both came from Georgia.
Joel M. Keith's military record shows he was a Private in the Confederate Army. Joined March 4,1862, received $50 bounty March 28, 1862, transferred to Co. F, 8th Battalion Georgia Inf. June 28, 1862 and was wounded at Chickamauga, Ga. Sept. 20, 1863. Pension records show he was captured at Franklin Ten. in 1864 and was in prison at Camp Chase Ohio to the close of the war. (Born in Hall County, Ga., Hall County is next to Forsyth Co.)
The Keith family bible states Joel married Nancy Jane January 12, 1860. This was before the war. They did not have children and Nancy may have died, after which Joel joined the army. Joel would have been 22 or 23 years old when he entered the army, and about 26/27 years old when he got out of prison in 1865/66. He married Susan Ann McClure October 6, 1869. Their first child, Flordid Anna Lee was born on July 11, 1870 in Georgia.
We know there were people with both Keith and McClure names living in Cherokee Nation with or as Indians during the Revolutionary and Indian wars.
Three Keiths and three McClures are listed as veterans that fought in these wars. Their names were drawn in 1832 as winners of plots of land in Georgia given to veterans. Other Keiths were listed in records, as whites living among the Cherokees in 1835. Other Keiths and McClures are listed in the 1820/1830/1840 &1850 Georgia census.
Passports were required by the state of Georgia to travel through Indian Territory in the early 1800s. On November 17, 1808 James Keith (49), Allan Spurlok, William Brooks, Gene Cook and Littleberry Thompson were issued a passport to travel in a group through the Creek Nation.