13 March 2014

Old Veteran George Keith Dies, Then Waits

He survived the Battle of Chancellorsville, but he couldn't beat old age.  I just hope he wasn't lonely in the end.

On his 1908 Indigent Soldier Confederate Pension Application, George A. Keith stated, "Have no family. Children all married. So far as I know they have no homestead or property." George's wife Sarah died in 1901, and he had been living in the Soldiers' Home of Atlanta, Georgia since 1904. Upon his death in 1919, this was the headline and article that ran in the 8 November edition of the Atlanta Constitution:
GEORGE H. KEITH DIES
Old Veteran Had Been Missing for Several Days.


George H. Keith, 78 years old, and a resident of the Confederate Soldiers' home, died Friday morning at 8:30 o'clock at 129 1/2 Edgewood avenue from an attack of heart failure. The body was carried to Harry G. Poole's chapel and will be held there pending funeral arrangements.

Several days ago the old veteran left his comrades of Bull Run, Appomattox, and his whereabouts in Atlanta were unknown until the announcement of his death was made.

Immediately after his disappearance the police were notified to institute a quiet search for the old veteran, but no trace leading to his recovery could be found.
George's death certificate can be freely viewed online at FamilySearch.org. It shows he "died suddenly" of "heart failure". And it appears some of the certificate was filled out before an informant could arrive.

Same such situation surrounds his burial. George was not laid to rest in Rose Hill Cemetery until almost a week after his death, waiting for family to arrive.

George A. Keith
Pvt Co B 2 Battn Ga Inf
Confederate States Army
Dec 22, 1841 - Nov 7, 1919

Photo by James Allen

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