I am one of the cousins researching the Keisters. (My specialty, if you will, is Jacob "Uncle Jake" Keister.) Eli was my great-grandfather's uncle. I have never found any evidence to suggest that Eli was married to anyone named Mary Whittaker. She might have married one of his sons or nephews or something, but that is just a wild guess. Eli was married to Nancy Thomas in Orange County, VA (I went to Orange County and read through the marriage records a couple of years ago, but neglected to get a copy) before he moved to Saline County, MO and he died before Cordelia was born. I have often wondered exactly who she is and what her connection actually might be to the family. I believe that Eli's youngest son, Edward, is the Edward Keaster of Ft. Benton, Montana based on a power of attorney made to Henry Stone, a Keister cousin who apparently handled legal transactions in Saline County for several of the family. There is no mention of Cordelia in those documents nor in Jacob's will (he left only a small amount of money to Eli's children and does not name them as with others of the family). I knew there was an Edward Keister in Montana based on the records in Saline County, and some land records I found on-line, but Dawn gave me more particulars on him and his family.
This tells you nothing about Cordelia. I would start with the name Mary Whittaker and see if she is listed in the land or marriage records of Saline County, or in Eli's probate estate (he did not leave a will that I can ascertain, although the probate records have plenty of information).
Can you tell me how you are connected with the Keisters?
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