Willard F. Keeney
Willard F. Keeney is a member of Butterfield, Keeney & Amberg, attorneys-at-law. He was born at Arcola, Illinois, January 25, 1862, a son of Daniel and Rhoda (White) Keeney, both of whom were born at Dumfries, Ontario. The father was of American parentage and came with his parents to Kent County at the age of six years; the mother was of American and English parentage and came to Kent County a few years later with her family, at the age of eight years. They were educated and married in Michigan, but for a few years lived in Illinois, where the father was engaged in Business. They returned, however, to Kent County in 1864. Willard F. Keeney was educated in the public schools of Grand Rapids, graduating from the high school in 1879. He then went to the University of Michigan, where he became a student in the literary and law departments, though a graduate of neither department. In 1882, he returned to Grand Rapids and entered the office of Roger W. Butterfield, being admitted to the bar in the following year. On January 1, 1887, Mr. Butterfield and he formed the firm of Butterfield & Keeney and continued in partnership in that name and in the name of its successor firm, Butterfield, Keeney & Amberg, until Mr. Butterfield’s death thirty-three and one-half years later. After Mr. Butterfield’s death, the firm name continued without change. Roger C. Butterfield and Julius H. Amberg are the junior partners. On November 10, 1897, Mr. Keeney married Miss Margaret Morton, of Fall River, Massachusetts, daughter of James Madison Morton and Emily (Canedy) Morton. Mrs. Keeney’s father was for many years a Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts. There are three children of the marriage, Willard F., Jr.; Morton and Roger Butterfield Keeney. Mrs. Keeney died on January 18, 1920. She was of domestic tastes and devoted to her family. She was a graduate of Vassar College and during her residence at Grand Rapids was active in the Women’s University Club and in various movements touching the finer life of the community, particularly those which were educational in character.
Page 211 – History of Kent County
Transcriber: Mary Huizen
Created: 7 February 2003