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Eugene O'Keefe
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Birth: Aug., 1833
County Cork, Ireland
Death: Jan. 17, 1910
Saint Louis
St. Louis City
Missouri, USA

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JANUARY 18, 1910


Prominent Citizen Succumbs to Effects of Operation


Has Been Carthage Resident Since 1867 - Successful in Business Affairs in Community

A long, active and well-lived life came to a close at 11:20 o'clock last night when Eugene O'Keefe, a pioneer citizen of Carthage, whose home was in Cassil Place, passed away in the Missouri Baptist hospital in St. Louis, following a surgical operation and a stroke of paralysis. The news of the death of Mr. O'Keefe came over the long distance telephone before midnight last night after messages telling of the patient's improved condition had been received during the day.

The body of Mr. O'Keefe, accompanied by the family, will arrive in Carthage tomorrow morning on the Frisco from St. Louis from St. Louis. Funeral services will be held Thursday afternoon at 2 o'clock, probably at his residence in Cassil Place.

Mr. O'Keefe was an exceptionally strong, able-bodied man during his life, but a year or more ago his health began to fail. It was eventually found that he was suffering with cancer of the jaw. Last week Mr. O'Keefe decided to go to St. Louis to consult a specialist and was accompanied to that city by his wife and his son, John O'Keefe.


When it was found a few days later that an operation was necessary, Mrs. L. S. Durham of South Main Street, daughter of Mr. O'Keefe, went to St. Louis to be with her father. Thus his wife and two only children were with Mr. O'Keefe when the end came last night.

An operation was performed for cancer on Wednesday morning and Mr. O'Keefe stood the operation well, but the following day he suffered a stroke of paralysis. the paralytic stroke seemed to be passing away and after a very bad day Sunday, the patient yesterday seemed to be progressing under the most hopeful circumstances. Later in the day, however, he began sinking and just before midnight breathed his last.

Eugene O'Keefe was born in Mallow, Cork County, Ireland, in August 1833, making his age at his death 76 years, and six months. He remained at his home in Ireland until he was 17 years of age, when he accompanied his father to America, the two coming here to join another son of the older O'Keefe who had already come to the United States.

After remaining in Philadelphia for a short time, Mr. O'Keefe went to Linn Creek, Missouri, where he clerked in a general store in which T. E. Gray of this city was also a clerk. This store was owned by J. W. McClurg, afterwards governor of Missouri, a father of Dr. M. J. McClurg of this city, and young O'Keefe came west on the invitation of Mr. McClurg.

At the beginning of the War of Rebellion (Civil War), Mr. O'Keefe was sent to Lebanon, Missouri by Mr. McClurg to take charge of a general store, but after remaining there a year or two, Mr. O'Keefe went to Montana, where he mined for a few years.


In 1867 T. E. Gray, who in the meantime had been frequently coming to Carthage on business, sent word to Mr. O'Keefe that he had better come to Carthage to locate, as this place was a town of exceptional prospects. Mr. O'Keefe returned that year and entered into a partnership here known as the Gray & O'Keefe firm. the firm conducted a general merchandising store in a frame building on the north side of the public square, where the Keim & McMillian building now stands. This partnership lasted several years, until Mr. O'Keefe became cashier of a state bank which is now the First National Bank. He only remained in this position for a short time, however, and has never been actively engaged in business since.

Mr. O'Keefe purchased considerable land in Jasper County, much of which proved to be valuable mineral land, and he also owned considerable rental property in Carthage and Joplin. In 1885 he was elected mayor of Carthage and served in that office for one term.

On October 7, 1869 he was married to Miss May E. McKnight of Carthage who survives him, the marriage service being performed by Rev. John W. Pinkerton.

Mrs. L. S. Durham and John O'Keefe of South Garrison Avenue, the only two children born to this union, survive their father.

Mr. O'Keefe was a Mason and an Elk and had hundreds of staunch friends in this city. He was a man of high principles and possessed a splendid character which made him much beloved by all who knew him. He was a good citizen and always had the welfare of his home city very much at heart.

Besides his other business interests, Mr. O'Keefe as a director in the Carthage Quarry Company, which concern ceased work this morning and will remain closed all the rest of this week out of respect for Mr. O'Keefe.


Reportedly from article in Carthage Evening Press copied by this magazine July 1899, the following regarding new Carthage Quarry north of Carthage, Missouri west from Carthage Stone company of Curtis Wright, John W Ground & Wm R Logan, to wit:

Eugene O;Keefe, president, F A Steadley, vice-president, F W Steadley, secretary-treasure with Martin McNerney general manager, brother P J McNerney and W H Phelps stockholders. Bob O'Brien was Quarry Boss.

It went on to say that Martin McNerney was first to use this stone in 1881 constructing Missouri-Pacific RR bridges.

SOURCE: A Google book found in the internet.
Family links: 
  Mahala Farmer McKnight O'Keefe (1851 - 1925)
  Lula O'Keefe Durham (1870 - 1943)*
  John Eugene O'Keefe (1875 - 1952)*
*Calculated relationship
Park Cemetery
Jasper County
Missouri, USA
Plot: Traditional Sector Bl 15 Lot 30 Sp 7
Created by: NJBrewer
Record added: Oct 16, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 60174237
Eugene O'Keefe
Added by: NJBrewer
Eugene O'Keefe
Added by: NJBrewer
Eugene O'Keefe
Added by: NJBrewer
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 Added: Oct. 19, 2012

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 Added: Aug. 28, 2012

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