|Born||Joseph Hallie Keaton
July 6, 1867
Terre Haute, Indiana
|Died||January 13, 1946
Los Angeles, California
|Children||3, including Buster Keaton|
Life and career
Keaton was born a few miles south of Terre Haute, Indiana to Libbie Jane and Joseph Francis Keaton IV. Leaving home in 1889, the year of the Land Rush, he homesteaded in the Oklahoma territory for a time, securing a claim three and a half miles northwest of Edmond. A few months into Keaton's residency, the neighboring homesteader (a Canadian whom Keaton had befriended on their shared journey west) was murdered and partially buried by a claim jumper; the body was subsequently discovered, and "justice was meted out" to the murderer by Keaton and a group of three or four men that included Robert Galbreath, Jr.
On May 31, 1894, Joe Keaton eloped with Myra Edith Cutler, who became known as Myra Keaton. Myra performed with Joe in a vaudeville act. Joe and Myra's first child was Joseph Frank Keaton, who became known as the silent film actor Buster Keaton; their other children were Harry Keaton and Louise Keaton.
Buster joined the act when he was only a few years old. The act was a rough-and-tumble one, with Buster being thrown around on stage most of the time. As the years went by, Joe Keaton became an alcoholic, which forced Buster to quit the act by the time he was a teenager. However, after he found success in silent film, Buster provided Joe with small parts in several movies. Myra and Joe split up long after Buster had become an adult. He lived alone in a Hollywood hotel for many years and was said to have stopped drinking after becoming a Christian Scientist.
|1917||A Country Hero||Cy Klone, Garage Owner|
|1918||The Bell Boy||Guest|
|Out West||Man on train|
|The Scarecrow||Farmer (uncredited)|
|1922||Day Dreams||The Girls Father (uncredited)|
|The Electric House||Extra (uncredited)|
|1923||Our Hospitality||The Engineer|
|1924||Sherlock, Jr.||Her father|
|1925||Go West||Man in Barber Shop (uncredited)|
|1926||The General||a Union General|
|1934||Evelyn Prentice||Courthouse Reporter (uncredited)|
|1935||Palooka from Paducah||Pa Diltz|
- "Joseph Keaton, Father of Film Comedian, an Old Vaudeville Trouper, Dies". New York Times. United Press. January 15, 1946. Retrieved 2015-02-10.
Joseph Keaton, old-time vaudeville performer and father of Buster Keaton, film comedian, died at his home last night after a long illness. His age was 79. Born in Terre Haute, Ind., Mr. Keaton was the leader of the Three Keatons, a vaudeville act which included his wife, Myra, and son. ...
- "Gossip of the Corridors". The Houston Post Vol. 23, Ed. 1 January 2, 1908. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
- "Screenland Secrets by John Holt". The Queenslander Thursday 27 December 1934. Retrieved 2 September 2015.