Friday, March 26, 2010

The Clare Line

Clare Name Meaning and History

  1. Irish and English: habitational name from Clare in Suffolk (probably named with a Celtic river name meaning ‘bright’, ‘gentle’, or ‘warm’). One of the first Normans in Ireland (1170–72) was Richard de Clare, Earl of Pembroke, better known as ‘Strongbow’, who took his surname from his estate in Suffolk.
  2. English: habitational name from Clare in Oxfordshire, named with Old English cl?g ‘clay’ + ora ‘slope’.
  3. English: from the Middle English, Old French female personal name Cla(i)re (Latin Clara, from clarus‘famous’), which achieved some popularity, greater on the Continent than in England, through the fame of St. Clare of Assisi. See also Sinclair.
  4. English: occupational name for a worker in clay, for example someone expert in building in wattle and daub, from Middle English clayere, an agent derivative of Old English cl?g ‘clay’.

  5. The Clare Line

    Larry Clare (father)
    b. 1940, Kansas
    Carl Clare (grandfather)
    b. 1917, Kansas
    Harry Cleveland Clare (great grandfather)
    b. 1883, Kansas
    James Daniel Clare (2nd great grandfather)
    b. 1849, Kentucky
    James Clare (3rd great grandfather)
    b. 1805, Kentucky

    Not much is known about my main paternal line. I didn't grow up with this side of the family so I don't have much to go on at all. James Clare Sr. moved his wife Elisabeth and four children (Martha, Sara, James Daniel & Luella) from Kentucky to Illinois sometime before James Daniel was 12. What brought him to Illinois is unknown at this time.  I'm going to have to rely on a marriage record for James Daniel Clare to try to get me further in the search. Most of the Clare's that settled in Kentucky where English but I'm sure there must be an Irish connection somewhere with a surname like Clare!
    James Daniel married Amanda Clarke in Illinois and sometime between 1895 and 1900 moved the family (Ray, Harry Cleveland, Elsie, Katie and Carl) to Perry, Oklahoma.  During this time, the famous Land Runs were taking place.  I doubt that James participated in the land run as the 1900 census shows him as a "renter" and "day laborer"  in Perry.  It's more probable that he went there to find work because towns were quickly growing as a result of the land settlements.  Just five years later he was living as a widower in Winfield, Kansas.  My great grandfather was 24 at the time but two of his siblings were still teenagers and living without their mother.
    Most of the information I found for my great grandfather, Harry Cleveland Clare came from his WWI draft registration card which showed him married with 4 children (Clinton, Clyde, Carl and Laurence), working as a truck driver and having gray eyes and brown hair. All that my dad really remembers about his grandfather was that he was a boxer in his youth.  I like the sound of that...both the Oklahoma Land Run and an Irish boxer make me think of the movie "Far and Away". A distant cousin is researching my great grandmothers line and shared with me his funeral card which gives the date of birth, death and final resting place:

    I hope the luck of the Irish will be with me as I continue to search records trying to find the birth city and parents of James Clare, Sr. and his wife Elisabeth.

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