W. Keleher A Multifaceted IndividualW. Keleher : A multifaceted individual
William Aloysius Keleher was a multifaceted individual. No, it is no exaggeration, not an over-stretched truth either. It is a completely unadulterated fact. Why would one say that? That is because Mr. Keleher was a unique person who stood out among many with his exceptional work and achievement. The way he struggled his way out to success and fame is truly remarkable. In this article, readers will re-discover the multifaceted William A. Keleher.
Born in Lawrence (Kansas) in 1886, William Aloysius Keleher resided in Albuquerque (New Mexico) from his early childhood where his family (David and Mary Ann Keleher) moved in 1889. He studied in Saint Mary''s Parochial School for some time but ironically, he had to put a brake to studying at one stage. It was the year of 1900 when his family could no longer support his education expenses. The magnanimous juvenile chose to work in order to help his family survive the difficult times. William Keleher''s first job ever was that of a messenger. He worked for the prestigious Western Union Telegraph Company. Thanks to his skills and hard-work, he was promoted to telegraph operator from counter clerk in fairly quick time. However, he was always looking to do new things. As a result, he worked in different places for a short time, most notably the Board of Education and BlueWater Development Company. He even managed to attract local newspapermen with his exceptionally good writing skills who appointed him as a reporter in the year of 1908. Furthermore, he got a writing job in Albuquerque Evening Herald and Albuquerque Journal.
It was during this time that he showed a newfound interest in law while observing contemporary events at a country courthouse. Within five years, he joined the Washington and Lee University''s law school and successfully graduated within two years in 1915. He wasted almost no time to start practicing law in the New Mexico Bar. Shortly after that, he went back to Albuquerque to work as the city attorney. Afterwards, he joined a legal practice with G. Downer which did not last too long. In 1931, he founded a law firm with A. Howard McLeod which was named ''Keleher & McLeod''. This firm, even after more than ninety years, continues to serve its clients successfully. Today, it is perceived as one of the most prestigious law firms in New Mexico. Keleher also worked as the city editor for the two magazines he previously worked for.
The versatile individual did not stop just there. He was an active citizen of New Mexico and acted as the chairman of its Democratic State Central Committee. The State Board of Finance also got his service for seventeen years. Mr. Keleher acted as a conservator for the first Albuquerque national bank when it was in dire straits. He was also involved in preparing the "MECHEM-KELEHER" report in the year of 1933 which convinced the government to start negotiating with the coal field labors after a strike of great magnitude.
Keleher was the legal counsel for the New Mexico Public Service Company and the director of Equitable Life Assurance Society. His contribution to the New Mexico College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (now known as the New Mexico State University), the Old Lincoln County Memorial Commission and the Museum of New Mexico also signifies his pro-active character.
This article will be incomplete if it does not mention the other side of William A. Keleher ? the writer persona. Keleher always had a knack for writing and he first showed it as a newspaper reporter. Years later, in 1942, his first book (The Maxwell Land Grant) came out. Following that, he wrote great books like The Fabulous Frontier, Turmoil in New Mexico, Violence in Lincoln Country, New Mexicans I Knew, and Memoirs. It should be mentioned that he always kept a balance between the author life and lawyer life, giving adequate time to both. As a result, William A. Keleher not only succeeded as a great lawyer, but also excelled as an effective writer.
This multi-talented individual passed away in 1972 but he is still remembered today for his outstanding achievements. He was truly a man of unique traits.
Keleher authored some of the premier works on the Southwest: "Maxwell Land Grant,"1942; "Fabulous Frontier," 1945; "Turmoil in New Mexico, 1846-1968," 1952;"Violence in Lincoln County," 1957; and "Memoirs" 1969. and "New Mexicans IKnew." Purchase the Books of William Keleher in .pdf format online at www.williamkeleher.com