Thanks to Mrs. Juliet Pennington from Welwyn (UK) we have obtained a nice picture of a portrait of William Keasberry, the oldest member of the Keasberry family from which we have found many details.
The artist who made the painting is unknown. The name on the painting is Mr. Kearsbury. In that period the family name may have been corrupted, which may be the reason that we have not been able to trace older family members.
William Keasberry was born in 1726, probably in London. In 1756/1757 he became an actor at the “Theatre Royal Bath” in Orchard Street. William apparently had a highly esteemed talent for acting and the theatre company was a great success and, among other places William gave performances in London, Edinburgh, Bristol and Richmond. Under John Palmer, William filled the post of acting-manager of the theatre. When John Palmer left, he took over the ownership of the theatre. He remained an active director until 1795. He died in 1797 at the age of 71.
William Keasberry was buried on the cemetery of the St. Thomas à Becket Church, Widcombe, Bath (UK). It is the oldest grave on the cemetery and the stone is still in a good condition.
The Royal Theatre still exists in Bath, although not in Orchard Street, where a plaque reminds us of the rich history of the theatre.
A second picture of a painting of William Keasberry (made by Ralph Stennet) was already visible as thumbnail on this website.
For more information about William and his descendents, see the book "The Genealogy of the Keasberry family" composed by Loet Keasberry under Documentation.
Tuesday February 24th 2009, 15:31:31