The Clarke Family Geneology Notes Page (Still under construction)
For the Clarke and related families Genealogy Index, click here
This page is dedicated to tracking down my ancestors and distant relatives, and trying to confirm them with the results from my Ancestry DNA test, which shows me to be 66% Western European, 17% Irish, 6% British, 5% Scandinavian, 3% Iberian Spanish, 2% Eastern European, and 1% Italian/Greek.
As far as I know, I am of extremely mixed European heritage, with various relatives saying my ancestors came from Ireland, Bavaria, Wales, Scotland, England, and Holland. My father received an invitation for a "Clarke Family Reunion" in Ireland in 1988, but since my father wasn't rich (and because no one else in my family had a passport), we didn't get to go to Ireland and meet our supposed relatives. I eventually got to Ireland 27 years later, but didn't find any proven family there, but did find some records on the Clarke and Devellin families that were there.
Certain branches of my family tree have been well documented (especially the Fogal/Kimpel branches on my mother's side- a book written by Glen Kimpel that was published in 1979 documents that side of the family), but right now I have little evidence on the Clarke family before the 1760s.
My paternal grandfather George Francis Clarke was born in Pinconning, in Bay County, Michigan. His stepdaughter Debbie Frances Clarke (b. 1952) found the obituary/funeral book for his maternal grandfather, Dr. Monroe Porter (1850-1932), who coincidentally happened to be the Pinconning town doctor around the time my grandfather was born. One of Dr. Porter's daughters was listed as "Mrs. Jeanette Clarke", my great-grandmother. My great-grandfather Edgar Allison Clarke was born June 2, 1883, in Ionia, Michigan, and died August 1, 1960, in Indianapolis. He resided in Michigan and Indiana, and he was married 3 times. His widow died in February 1986 in Jackson, Mississippi. Her name at death was Audrey Clarke, and according to my grandmother Hazel, Audrey Castle Clarke was a relative of Hollywood actress Stella Stevens. Certain ancestors of Dr. Monroe Porter are well documented, especially the Porters of Haddam, Connecticut, the Andrews family of Connecticut (whose descendants include most of my Porter ancestors as well as 43rd US President George W. Bush and his mother Barbara Pierce Bush), the Drake family of 1300s Devonshire, England and 1600s Massachusetts, and Mrs. Mary Church (1637-1690), whose father was allegedly (but not proven) Mayflower passenger Stephen Hopkins (b. late 1580s, d. 1644).
The following incomplete tree might be of some help:
ME- Thomas Donald Clarke (b. May 8, 1972 in Abilene, TX)
Donald George Clarke (b. October 1, 1935 in Jacksonville, FL- died December 27, 1995 at Hillhaven Nursing Home in Memphis, TN) (My father was in the Air Force 1958-78)
Patricia Marie Faith Clarke (b. June 12, 1942 in Chambersburg, PA -died November 5, 1991 at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis, TN)
Donald G. Clarke's parents:
George Francis Clarke (b. May 17, 1908 in Pinconning, MI -died June 23, 1981 at the VA Hospital, Memphis, TN)
Hazel Katherine (or Kathleen) Stokes Clarke (b. August 26, 1911 in Toronto, Ontario -died August 29, 1995 in Memphis, TN)
George and Hazel Clarke were married April 4, 1929, in Detroit, Michigan.
Hazel Stokes Clarke's parents were Paradise Watts Stokes and Albert Thomas Stokes, both born around Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, England in 1878. Albert's parents were Thomas Stokes and Elizabeth Maskell. Thomas Stokes was an English postmaster. Paradise was the daughter of Edwin and Mary Watts. Albert and Paradise married in 1900, and emigrated to Canada around 1907, and followed their oldest daughter Doris Stokes Hermann (1901-1999) to Detroit in 1926 after Albert lost a lawsuit against his brother who was a supplier to his restaurant in eastern Toronto. Albert and Paradise Stokes died in 1951 in Detroit within months of each other. My Grandmother Hazel was one of six children. (Her older brother Victor Stokes died as an infant after the move from England to Toronto.) Hazel's sister Cicely Stokes Wood died in the 1980s outside Toronto and was the only one of the adult Stokes children not to settle in the United States. Her brother Wilfred Stokes (1915-1996) and two of his children were self-made millionaires. My grandmother's youngest sister was Mollie Stokes Bayliss (b. 1919, d. 11/30/2011 in Florida).
On my Aunt Debbie's copy of my grandfather's birth certificate, it lists his name as Gary Francis Clarke, not George Francis Clarke. But every other record shows his first name as George. What a surprise, I'm not the only Clarke to change my first name, although I think Gary's name was changed to George by his parents before the 1910 Census. My grandfather's mother is listed in various sources as Mrs. Jeanette Clarke, Jeanette Maude Clarke, and Jeanette (Nettie) Porter. My great-grandfather Edgar Allison Clarke was Jeanette's second husband. Her first husband was Erwin Stocum (b. 1868, d. 1951), by whom she had three children, twin daughters Fernetta and Johanna Stocum (b. 7/3/1893) and Milton Stocum (1896-1912). Fernetta and Johanna lived with their grandparents Alvero and Charlotte Houck Stocum Van Wagoner after Jeanette and Erwin's marriage ended around 1900. Milton lived with his mother and step-father (and my then-2-year-old grandfather) in 1910, but there is presently no record on what happened to my grandfather's half-siblings after 1910. Jeanette was born January 25, 1875 in Attica, MI. There is a reference to her being a surviving child of her father in his death notice. She did live in the same neighborhood of Hillsborough County, FL, as my grandparents in 1930 (according to the Census that year). I'm pretty sure that a Jacksonville, Florida, death record for March 22, 1933 that mentions one deceased "Janet M. Clarke" (the ex-wife of Edgar Clarke and daughter of "Monroe Parker") explains what happened to my great-grandmother. Jeanette's mother was Phebe Ann Van Wagoner Porter (1852-1891), who was one of the Michigan descendants of a huge Dutch-American family called Van Wagenen/Van Wagoner who first settled in Kingston, NY, in the 1650s. I am still trying to find out how Jeanette and Phebe were related to Erwin Stocum's step-father Alvero Van Wagoner. Some of the Michigan Van Wagoners went on to illustrious careers, such as Murray Van Wagoner (a governor of Michigan best known for authorizing the construction of the Mackinac Bridge), and Esther Van Wagoner Tufty, who was a prominent Washington journalist and socialite known as "The Duchess".
Edgar Allison Clarke's parents are listed on his birth certificate as Edgar Almeron Clarke (b. 8/31/1850, d.12/25/1929) and Lucina E. Clarke (1847-1910). No hometowns were given for my great-great grandparents on his birth certificate, although it lists Edgar's home state as New York and Lucina's home state as Pennsylvania. I found out on the internet that my great-great grandparents were married in Ionia on May 8, 1873. Their marriage certificate lists my great-great grandmother's birth name as Lucena Cadwell, who was the daughter of prominent Ionia merchant/farmer Almeron "AC" Cadwell (b. 7/14/1810 in Granby, CT, d. 12/9/1892 in Ionia, MI) and his wife Christiana Rich Cadwell (b. 1812 in Shoreham, VT, d. 11/10/1887 in Ionia, MI), who was a distant relative of 1890s Michigan Governor John T. Rich. According to the 1880 and 1900 Censuses, my great-great grandparents resided in Grand Rapids, MI, and had 3 other children: Sarah Clarke Hill (b. 1/1/1878 in Ionia, d. 1/4/1940 in Kalamazoo, MI), Ina (Inez or Dina) Clarke Blanchard (b. 3/1/1881, d. 1/8/1941, Toledo, OH), and George S. Clarke (b. 4/14/1888- d. 7/29/1956- not to be confused with my grandfather of the same first and last names). Edgar Almeron Clarke was buried at Highland Park Cemetary in Ionia, MI, although he died near his son George's residence in Grand Rapids. George Stillman Clarke was the only one of my great-grandfather's siblings to remain in Grand Rapids after his father's death. He was a prominent businessman (for the latter half of his life, he was President of the Central Michigan Paper Company) and a socialite. George's wife was Katherine Precious Clarke (1886-1950), who was also a community leader. Oakhill Cemetery has a Clarke family plot that includes George and Katherine, Katherine's parents Joseph Precious and Almyra Precious Urie, and George and Katherine's son Robert Clarke (b-d 1909).
According to the 1924 biographical sketch on George S. Clarke, his parents moved from New York to Michigan in 1860. However, they didn't get married until 1873. Most sources list Edgar's homestate as New York, but the 1870 Census for Vernon, MI, and his death certificate list his birthplace as Michigan. The 1870 Census shows that he supported his widowed mother Sarah (1817-97). His death certificate lists his parents' names as Stillman Clarke of New Hampshire and Sarah M. Allen of Vermont. Stillman Clarke and his two daughters Helen (1843-1915) and Frances (1848-1911) appear with Edgar and Sarah in the 1860 Census for Washtenaw County, MI. Some sources list the homestate of Edgar's wife Lucina as New York instead of Pennsylvania. It is known that Lucina's parents lived in both New York and Pennsylvania before the Cadwell family settled in Ionia, MI. Ina Clarke Blanchard's death record lists her father's hometown as Hammond Hill, NY (more likely the one in Essex County than the one in Tompkins County).
After countless hours at the National Archives in Soho and a 2002 trip to the New Hampshire State Library in Concord, I tried to uncover some stuff on older branches of the Clarke family. There is a listing in the 1850 Census for a Stillman Clark of New Hampshire and Vermont-born wife Sarah. These Clarkes apparently lived in Livingston County, MI, in 1850. That Census sheet (dated October 31, 1850) also lists daughters Helen and Frances, but there is no listing of a son named Edgar (my great-great grandfather was born two months before that census was taken). My trip to Concord uncovered a birth record of a Stilman Clarke on February 28, 1806, to parents Abraham Clarke Jr. and wife Eady in an official records book for the Town of Sullivan, Cheshire County, New Hampshire. But recently, I found a genealogical history book that went into great detail on Abraham Clarke Sr. and Jr. They lived from 1792 to 1811 in Sullivan, NH, spent a few years in Springfield, VT, and then lived (until at least 1855) in Crown Point, NY and (by 1855) in Wadham's Mills, NY. These Clarkes were originally from Townsend, MA.
I have yet to find anything that definitively lists Abraham Clarke Sr's parents or where they came from, although the Y-DNA (R-DF41) evidence is fairly strong that they weren't English. If they were in fact Irish, they probably originated around modern-day Northern Ireland or County Cavan. County Cavan has records of a few Clarkes being displaced by the English plantation system of the 1600s.
Click here for a list of all the Clarke ancestors I've been able to trace.
Click here for more information on the Essex County NY Clarkes
Patricia Faith Clarke's family:
Richard Joseph Faith (b. January 14, 1915 in Pittsburgh, PA -died March 25, 1995 at a hospital in Waynesboro, PA) and Grace Fogal Faith (b. May 11, 1914 in Chambersburg, PA -died July 15, 1972 in Chambersburg)
Richard and Grace Faith were married December 31, 1938, at Corpus Christi Rectory in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.
Richard and Grace Faith had the following children in addition to my mother: Mary Ann Faith Hull (b. 1939); Nancy Faith Barnhart (b. 1941); Sarah (Sally) Faith Bowling (b. 1944); Richard Faith Jr. (b. 1946); Judy Faith Reasner (b. 1950); David Faith (b-d 1953); James Faith (b-d 1954); and Ronald Faith (b. 1956), who still maintains my grandfather's basement bar.
My grandfather Richard Faith never really knew his father, Jesse Cornelious Mateer (b October 28, 1893, d. August 14, 1971 in Pittsburgh), who was drafted into World War 1 about 2 years after my grandfather's birth. My grandfather was raised by his mother Nancy Faith Crawford (1895-1959) and his grandparents Nathan Faith (1865-1940) and Sarah Cox Faith (1863-1928). Nathan Faith's father was Adam Faith (b. 1817?, d. 3/2/1882), a Bavarian immigrant who settled in Clear Spring, Maryland, before the Civil War. The Faiths may have lived in Mexico and the Western US Territories before settling in Maryland. The Mateers who currently live in Pittsburgh had lived in Armstrong County, PA since the 1820s. Before that, the family was known as McTeer, whose first US home was in Lower Allen Twp, Cumberland County, PA. The first McTeer to settle in America was James McTeer (1697-1785), who emigrated from County Down, Northern Ireland (somewhere between Newry and Newcastle near the southern Mourne mountains) to Baltimore in 1730. Many of James McTeer's descendants settled in Blount County, TN. I am still trying to trace the history of Jesse Mateer's mother's family, the Devellins. All I know is that they were from Northern Ireland and settled in the Pittsburgh area in the early-to-mid 1800s, and that they are the only Irish branch of my family tree to immigrate to the USA after the Revolutionary War. But the research I found at the National Library of Ireland indicates they were probably from the same area near County Down that the Mateer/McTeer/McAteer families are from.
My grandmother Grace Fogal Faith has the best preserved geneology of my mother's relatives. Her father was Joseph Fogal (1871-1920) and her mother was Elizabeth Kimpel Fogal (1875-1958). Joseph Fogal's father, Adam Fogal (1840-1919), was born in Dublin Township, Huntingdon County, PA, and settled just across the county line near Doylesburg. Adam Fogal's parents Michael and Josephine Teikal Fogal were from Darmstadt, Germany, and emigrated to Pennsylvania around 1836. They were parishioners at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Shade Gap (Orbisonia), PA. Adam Fogal was wounded during the Battle of Gettysburg and settled near Doylesburg, PA.
I recently discovered some of the information on my great-great-grandmother Sarah Cox Faith's family. Her parents were Amos Cox (b. 1820, d. 1890?) and Nancy Giles Cox (b. 1825 d. 1890?) of what is now Richmond Furnace in western Franklin County, PA. Amos Cox's birthplace is variously listed as Virginia, Clear Spring, MD, or Franklin County, PA. Nancy Giles Cox's family were probably among the original settlers of Metal Township in Franklin County, and were notable for being practicing Catholics in an era when discrimination against the faith was widespread and legal (well before my German Catholic ancestors arrived in PA).
The family tree of the Kimpels has been documented and published. I think Glen Kimpel's book on his ancestors is available through the Library of Congress. The Kimpels came to the US from Bavaria around 1840. Their port of entry (like the Fogals and McTeers) was Baltimore, MD. The Kimpels briefly lived in Adams County, PA, before settling in Hamilton Township in Franklin County, PA.
While my great-grandmother Jeanette Clarke's half-brother Manley McKinley Porter is not a direct descendant, his story does bear mentioning here because he is still a distant relative, and partially due to the efforts of Rose Porter, Danielle Evans, and me, the 77-year-old mystery of his disappearance was solved over 15 years ago. Manley was born July 17, 1898 in Pinconning, MI, while his father (my great-great-grandfather) Monroe Porter was the town doctor there. Manley's mother was Monroe's 3rd wife, Hannah Richardson Porter (b. 1871 in Simcoe, Ontario, Canada; d. 2/2/1932 in Flint, MI). Manley's first wife was Zelda Overlay (b.1900, d.?); they had a daughter, Betty Porter Long (1920-98). Manley's second wife was Mary Bryan (1905-26); their children were Barnard Porter (b. 1924) and Bryan Porter (1925-2005), Rose Porter's father-in-law. Manley disappeared shortly after his second wife's death; Barnard Porter was raised by his grandmother Hannah's family, while Bryan Porter was raised by his uncle James A. Porter (1882-1972), Jeanette's younger full-brother. For over 75 years, no one in the Michigan branch of the Porter family knew what happened to Manley, except that he tried to contact the Pinconning, MI, school system, with a letter postmarked from New York around 1942.
Flash forward to March 2003. I get an e-mail from a Danielle Evans of Long Island with her phone number and a message stating that she knows what happened to Manley McKinley Porter. I called her, and found the rest of Manley's story. In February 2003, Danielle went to a funeral home in Farmingville, NY, to try and find information on her great-grandfather Donald Porter. She could not uncover much except a birthdate, his death date (March 7, 1962), and his mother's maiden name: Hannah Richardson. She went to ancestry.com, and found no Donald Porter, but did find Hannah Richardson Porter, and info on Hannah's disappeared son who matched the description of Danielle's great-grandfather Donald Porter: Manley McKinley Porter. I immediately notified Rose Porter, who forwarded the information to her father-in-law Bryan Porter (who got to meet several of his newfound half-brothers before he died in 2005). Eventually, there is supposed to be a family reunion to unite the Long Island descendants of Manley Porter with his Michigan descendants.
I now have the following info on Manley (Donald) Porter's post-Michigan family: Manley married Grace India (1906-90) around 1929 in New York, NY. They had 5 sons (all but Donald Porter 1944-98 and Robert Porter 1937-2012 are still alive). The family lived in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, then Brooklyn (the Prospect-Lefferts Gardens\Wingate area), and eventually settled in Farmingville, NY. Most of Manley and Grace Porter's sons were born at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn.
Last updated May 10, 2018.
Note: Many state websites (including Indiana, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Colorado, California, Florida, New Hampshire, and Texas) have links to local vital records departments.
Special thanks to Debbie Clarke, Rose Porter, Danielle Evans, Claudia Bayliss, Mollie Bayliss, Bill Smith, Carl Van Wagenen, Helen Ringer, Juanita Napper, Don Rice, Tom Hermann, Steve Trumbo, Laurel Hutchins, Stephen Gold, the National Library of Ireland, the Toronto Public Library, the New Hampshire Archives in Concord, and Rob Jordan's Studio for providing some of the information (and/or photos) on this page.
If anyone has any pictures of Edgar Allison Clarke, Jesse Mateer, Jeanette Porter Clarke, the Stocum children, Lucina Cadwell Clarke, or Almeron and Christiana Cadwell, please e-mail me at [email protected] or [email protected] I do not have any photos of these ancestors, and I would like to add their photos to this website.