Colusa County Biographies - K

Biographies and photos source:

  1. Colusa County: Its History Traced from a State of Nature through the Early Period of Settlement and Development, to the Present Day with a Description of its Resources, Statistical Tables, Etc., Justus H. Rogers

  2. Biographical Sketches of Pioneers and Prominent Residents, Orland, California, 1891.

A digitized version of the book can be found on Google Books.

Please note: many of the names in this index were abbreviated with initials. The full names of those individuals has been added {in braces} when possible.

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Keeran, John F. (p. 427)
This gentleman is a native of the State of Tennessee, born July 20, 1831. He was raised on his father's farm, where he was early inured to labor, and the duty of self-help, receiving during a portion of the year an opportunity for education in the common schools of his locality. He removed with his parents in 1839 to Cass County, Missouri, and passed the next ten years in doing farm work. In May, 1849, he set out for California by the overland route, and on arriving in the State, followed the life of a miner, with its ups and downs and varying fortunes, but on the whole, with little success, till 1860. In that year he went to Vacaville, Solano County, and remained there some time. He came to Colusa County in 1876, locating on his present place, three miles from Willows, where he cultivates six hundred and forty acres of land.

His sound judgment and business qualifications have so commended him to the people of the community that in 1874 he was chosen Supervisor for the Fourth District, and afterwards twice re-elected, and which position he still holds. During his incumbency of this office he has served two years as chairman of the Board.

Mr. Keeran was married, at Vacaville, in November, 1863, to Miss Rachel Stark, by whom he has five children, three sons and two daughters.
Kelley, Hon. K. E. (p. 409)
Kirk Etna Kelley is a native of Warren County, Illinois, born June 3, 1848. His father was one of the pioneers of California, coming to this State in 1848, shortly after the birth of Kirk E., and dying there some two years later. When but a child, his widowed mother, his brother and an adopted sister moved to Iowa, and here young Kirk was brought up on a farm. He attended school only three months and never entered the door of a high school or college except in the capacity of a teacher. What he acquired in an educational way was the result of his own self-teaching, of long hours in the evening, spent in reading, after a hard day's work. He was always an omnivorous reader of books, and his retentive memory gleaned and stored away the pith and substance of what he found therein, for effective use in after life. When he had reached his seventeenth year, young Kelley passed his examination and received his certi6Cate of teacher. He then began teaching in the public schools and followed it for several years in Missouri and Kansas. In 1871 he came to California, and for two years taught school in Solano County. Being naturally ambitious to rise, Mr. Kelley began the study of the law. He had formed a partnership in the real-estate business at Dixon, and this afforded him an opportunity to devote his leisure time to his “black-letter books.” He borrowed his books, and, by dint of hard study, was admitted to practice in the county court of Solano at the end of a year. At the close of the following year he was admitted to practice his profession before the District Courts of the Sixth and Seventh Judicial Districts. He was afterwards entitled to practice by admission before the Supreme Court of the State and Circuit Court of the United States. His large business was extensive and his fees were fat, and he was enabled to retire from active practice in the courts in 1884. In 1882 he was elected State Senator from Yolo and Solano Counties, and served in the twenty-fifth Legislative Assembly during the regular and extra sessions. This was the notable period in which efforts were made to oust the Railroad Commissioners by joint resolution of the two Houses of the Legislature. Mr. Kelley opposed the movement, and by reason thereof he was, with other members, read out by the Democratic party at the famous Stockton convention.

Mr. Kelley came to Willows in 1885, and purchased the Willows Journal, which he edited and conducted in connection with W. H. Kelley for two years. A close logician and a master of vigorous English, Mr. Kelley soon lifted this newspaper from obscurity into the most flattering prosperity. Since his coining to Willows he has always identified himself with the business and social advancement of that town. His energy, shrewdness, persistence and knowledge of men and motives, have always brought him to the front, a cheerful leader, particularly of any forlorn hope in which his town requires prudent generalship. In the struggles for the division of the county and for the formation of Glenn County, Mr. Kelley was acknowledged by the opponents of that measure to be their most skillful and most formidable adversary. In 1888 he was sent as a delegate to the Democratic State Convention at Los Angeles. Mr. Kelley was married, in 1876, to Miss Louisa, daughter of Daniel Zumwalt, a pioneer of California and an old resident of the county.
Photo of Kirk Kelley

Hon. Kirk Etna Kelley

Kelley, W. H. (p. 441)
{William Hawkins Kelley} Noteworthy among the active business men of the county and that class of politicians who take a deep interest in party and public affairs for the sake of promoting its basal principles and not in a selfish scheming for office, is W. H. Kelley. He was born in Ralls County, Missouri, December 8, 1851, and is the oldest son of Hon. John M. Kelley, of Yolo County. His father having decided to leave Missouri and found another home, the family commenced the long and at times perilous journey across the plains in 1859 with California as the objective point. On the journey, young Kelley, though but eight years old, made his first acquaintance with real work, being engaged in driving his father's cattle all the way from the Missouri River to the Pacific. The Kelley family, shortly after arriving in the State, settled in Yolo County, where “Buck” as he is familiarly called, attended the public school for a while, afterwards completing his education at the Jesuit College, Santa Clara. Attaining his majority about this time, he came to Colusa County, engaging in various occupations, such as farming conducting a livery stable, journalism and the real estate and insurance business. In May, 1885, in conjunction with K. E. Kelley, he purchased the Willows Journal and during the co-partnership of these two bright, active, and aggressive gentlemen, the Journal came to the front and was much appreciated and quoted by its exchanges. Mr. Kelley again resumed the editorship of the Journal on September 1, 1890, which paper, besides issuing a weekly paper of eight pages, is one of the newsiest dailies in the Sacramento Valley. He takes great interest in politics, being one of the most indefatigable workers in the Democratic ranks and an acknowledged leader therein. He served as secretary of the Democratic County Central Committee from 1888 to 1890. “Buck” lays no claim of belonging to that rather numerous and unhappy class of local statesmen who seek to control communities for all the glory and pelf there is in it. An honorable, public-spirited man, when his locality or party are to be benefited, he does the work of any two men and pays for the pleasure of doing it out of his own means. This is all the glory or recompense he seeks.
Photo of William Kelley

William Hawkins Kelley

Kimball, Dr. A. W. (p. 445)
{Adolphus Wellington Kimball} This accomplished and studious physician is a resident of Williams. He was born at Marysville, California, on April 28, 1858. Pursuing a course of studies in that city, he graduated in 1879 from the Marysville High School. After preparing himself by several years of arduous study in his chosen profession, that of medicine, he received his diploma in 1883 from the medical department of the University of New York, and in the following year the same honor was conferred on him by the Kentucky School of Medicine, established at Louisville, Kentucky. For some time after his admission to practice, Dr. Kimball was located in Oakland, California, but in 1884 he came to Williams, where he has since resided, and by his skill and its conscientious application he has established a fine practice. Both socially and professionally Dr. Kimball can truthfully call every man in the community his friend.