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Hon. Robert A. Keller. A lawyer by profession, with residence at Marietta in Love County, Robert A. Keller entered the Oklahoma Senate from the Eighteenth Senatorial District after his election 19 1914. Senator Keller has spent all his active career in the Southwest, as a young man was a Texas cowboy, was admitted to the bar in that state about twenty years ago, has been a resident of Oklahoma more than ten years, and his official record also contains service as county judge.
Robert A. Keller was born in Knox County, Tennessee, July 11, 1872, a son of William S. and Ann (Matlock) Keller. Senator Keller has a brother, A. L. Keller, who is in the office of the State Fire Insurance Commissioner at Austin, Texas, another, C. F. Keller, a resident of Knoxville, Tennessee, and associated with the Knoxville Coffin Company, two sisters Mrs. Margaret Daniels, of Los Angeles, California, and Mrs. Mary Cotten of Gainesville. Texas. Senator Keller’s father was a Confederate soldier, and had the distinction of being one of the youngest participants in the battle of Chickamauga, where he fought when only sixteen years of age. He was in Company F of the Second Tennessee Cavalry, and during much of the war was under that intrepid leader General Joe Wheeler. William R. Keller is now a resident of Knoxville, Tennessee. His wife was the daughter of Col. A. Matlock, who was in the quartermaster’s department in the Confederate Army in Tennessee. Senator Keller is a descendant of Casper Keller, who lived in Hagerstown, Maryland, and who received a land grant in Maryland from Charles II after coming to this country from Switzerland. One of Casper Keller’s sons married a daughter of Governor Spotswood of Virginia, while another daughter married the gallant Richard Henry Lee of Revolutionary fame. Helen Keller, the noted blind girl who has achieved international reputation through her remarkable talents and accomplishments, is a second cousin of Senator Keller, being a daughter of his grandfather’s brother.
Senator Keller attended the public schools of Tennessee until ten years of age, when his parents removed to Montague County, Texas, where he grew to manhood. Montague County was at that time on the great border of the cattle range, with somewhat limited school facilities, but he had such advantages as were offered by the common schools there until fifteen. He subsequently took a shorthand and typewriting course in the Gainesville Business College at Gainesville. From 1889 to 1892 he spent as a cowboy and rancher on the plains of West Texas. Senator Keller studied law at home, and was admitted to the Texas bar in 1895.
In 1904 he removed to Marietta, Oklahoma, and has since been one of the active citizens of Love County. In 1909 he was appointed county judge of Love County, and the following year was elected to that office and served with admirable efficiency until 1912. In 1914 Mr. Keller was elected a member of the State Senate from the Eighteenth District. During his first term in the Senate he was chairman of the committee on insurance and a member of the committees on legal advisory, judiciary No. 2, fees and salaries, public buildings, school lands, and prohibition enforcement. He has been primarily interested in such constructive legislation as would carry out the expressed program and desires of the democratic party, with which he affiliates, so as to make the party a balance between the two extremes of socialism and standpatism.
Senator Keller was married March 8, 1898, to Lillian Davis, daughter of Capt. J. H. Davis, who was a soldier in the Confederate army with a North Carolina regiment. Mr. and Mrs. Keller were married at Bowie, Texas, where Mrs. Keller for some years had been a popular and successful teacher. Into their home have come three children: Helen, aged fifteen; James, aged fourteen; and Robert, aged nine. Senator Keller is a past master of the Masonic lodge at Marietta and a past high priest of the Royal Arch Chapter. He is past chancellor in the Knights of Pythias Lodge No. 137 at Marietta, and is a grand trustee of the Knights of Pythias Grand Lodge of Oklahoma and a past grand tribune of the Grand Lodge. He is a steward in the Methodist Episcopal Church South at Marietta.