Friday, October 25, 2013

Jules “Pop Jules” Keller

Jules “Pop Jules” Keller

The patriarch of the Keller Klan is “Pop Jules” Keller born around 1858. According to family legend, he was of Oglala descent. During this time, The Great Sioux War drove many Oglala from the North part of the territory down into the southern regions of Louisiana. The identities of his parents are unknown.

He was known for his non-conformism to American ideas. He wore a long, black braid down his back, traditional Native American clothing and chose a bicycle as his primary form of transportation. He also loved to smoke his pipe.

Jules married Pauline Pryor or Prayer on February 11, 1882 in St. John the Baptist Church. Pauline was the daughter of Sam Pryor and Pauline Tony, both of Louisiana.

Together Pauline and Jules produced the first generation of the Keller Klan which included Noel, Bartholomaus, Noelie, Pierre, Julien, Juliene aka Julia, Marie, Noemie and Morris Sr.

Jules lived a long, full life. He passed away due to pneumonia on February 2, 1952. He is buried in Our Lady of Peace Cemetery with his beloved wife.

Morris Keller, Sr.

Morris Keller, Sr.



Morris Sr. was a product of the union between Jules Keller and Pauline Pryor (Prayer). He was one of several children. The Keller Klan included: Noel, Bartholomaus, Noelie, Pierre, Julien, Juliene aka Julia, Marie, Noemie and Morris Sr.

Morris was the baby of the family, born on September 8, 1901. He married Catherine Morris and built a fine family his own. They filled their home with nine children: Larry, Willie Mae, Charles, Clarence, Susie, Dorothy, Morris Jr., Shirley, and Margaret. He lived most of his life between Vacherie. He was of mixed heritage: African and Native American descent.


Morris worked hard as a laborer on the local sugar cane fields. Morris Sr. passed away at the age of ninety-three on December 8, 1994.

Catherine “Mom Love” Morris

Catherine “Mom Love” Morris



 “Mom Love” was born March 10, 1908 in Geisner. Catherine was the daughter of Charles Morris and Sarah Henderson. She was a native to Ascension Parish, Louisiana. She was known for her loving spirit, thus her nickname.

Catherine was able to receive a third grade education. She became a dutiful home-maker and a loving mother to nine children. They were named: Larry, Willie Mae, Charles, Clarence, Susie, Dorothy, Morris Jr., Shirley and Margaret Keller.


Mom Love passed away in August of 1989 in Vacherie, St. James Parish, Louisiana at the age of eighty-one. She is buried with her beloved husband, Morris Keller, Sr., in Our Lady of Peace Cemetery and Mausoleum.

Charles “Charlie” Morris

Charles “Charlie” Morris

Charles “Charlie” Morris was the son of the late, great Honorable Milton Morris and his first wife, Lucy Ann Richard. Like his father, he was born during slavery around October 1857 in Missouri. He worked as a laborer on a Louisiana sugar plantation for most his adult life.

He grew-up in Donaldsonville, Ascension Parish, Louisiana. His wife was Sarah Henderson, also of Missouri. He had five children with his wife. His children were Archille, Hannah, Cornelius, Catherine, and Vinna Morris.


Even though he was born into an atrocious institution of bondage and worked as a farm laborer, he was able to read and write. This is evidence that education was of high value within the family.

Joseph Albert Boudoin

Joseph Albert Boudoin

Joseph Albert Boudoin was born on September 25, 1875 to Alice Celestine Tastet and Sylvestre Baudoin. He was one of several children. His full-blooded siblings were: Elicia, Celcilia, and Charles Boudoin. His father remarried, fathering several more children. He grew up on a rice plantation in Lafourche parish.

What is most interesting about Joseph is that as a child he was listed as white. However, after he married a mulatto woman, he changed his race and chose to identify as a mulatto himself. Perhaps this was more acceptable than admitting to being in an interracial marriage. Maybe his family disowned him after marrying a woman of color. We can only speculate. But, DNA evidence confirms a direct connection to this side of the Boudoin family.

Joseph and Olympia “Olympe” Borne married in St. John the Baptist Church on January 25, 1894. They built a life together in Lucy, close to Olympe’s family. Joseph worked as a sugar farm laborer, while Olympe became a domestic servant for a private family, just like her mother. Joseph and Olympia may have been an unlikely pair. Not only were they of different races they also spoke different native tongues. Joseph was a fluent French-speaker, Olympe an English-speaker.

Olympe was the daughter of Felicity Pierre and Honoré Borne. Both were Louisiana natives and both were described as mulattoes on the US Censuses. Olympia was one of ten children. She became the mother of her own tribe of children.


 In their later years, Joseph and Olympe lived in New Orleans on Columbus Street. Joseph and Olympe Boudoin shared a long life together. Joseph’s exact death date is unknown. However, Olympe passed away at the age of eighty-six in Edgard, Louisiana in 1967. 

Sylvio Boudoin

Sylvio Boudoin


Sylvio Boudoin was born on December 18, 1894 in Edgard, St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana to Joseph Albert Boudoin and Olympia Borne. He is one of four known children. Sylvio grew up with two brothers: Louis and Chester and a sister named Noelie. His native tongue was French and grew-up working on a plantation with his father in Lucy, Louisiana.

Sylvio obtained a first grade education, according to the 1940 US Census record. It is known that Adelard Weber was one of his employers when he was twenty-one years old. He worked as a farm laborer for most of his adult life. To make extra money, he also worked as a chauffeur.

The highlight of his life was his family. He married a local girl, Eunice Caire. Together they raised their clan of children happily.  They loved entertaining their grandchildren and just being together.


He passed away in September 1978 after a full life and sixty years of marriage. He is remembered for being a quiet and kind man.