As noted in her bio which I just wrote :) the only evidence for the identity of William Osgood's wife is a sweet but unprovable anecdote in a 1894 Osgood genealogy:
"The old man... broke out in a sort of musical speech, 'My wife was Betty Cleer, and I loved her before I see her.'"
Genealogies of that era often included all kinds of cute little stories to illustrate the character of their subjects—they weren't literally true and I don't think they were ever intended to be taken as such.
Many online trees did take it literally, though, and now claim wife Osgood to have been "Elizabeth Cleer" or "Elizabeth Clere", and indeed that's how she's been imported into WikiTree.
I have looked for evidence and I have not found any other than the above, which is not evidence. However, I may very well have overlooked something.
Is there any actual evidence supporting Cleer/Clere as the LNAB of William Osgood's wife? Is there any actual evidence that an Elizabeth Cleer/Clere was a real person who existed?
If an Elizabeth Cleer/Clere existed but we cannot prove she was William's wife:
- We should detach Elizabeth Clere from William Osgood, remove "Osgood" from her CLN, and update her bio.
- Should we create a new Unknown profile to be William Osgood's wife? Or leave his spouse blank?
If we cannot prove an Elizabeth Cleer/Clere existed at all:
- We should change her LNAB, making Elizabeth (Clere) Osgood Elizabeth (Unknown) Osgood.
- We should detach her current parents and update her bio.
The same book also says, but without mentioning any sources:
"His wife's name was Elizabeth, which is all the account we have of her except what comes by way of tradition."
Is there any actual evidence supporting Elizabeth as her first name? She isn't named in William's will, but there might very well be deeds or other documents I didn't find.
- If there isn't, then what should we change her first name to?
Is there any actual evidence that "John Cleer" and "Mrs. John Clere" and "Katherine Cleer" were real people who existed?
- If there is, then we should add sources to their profiles and attach them to their real family.
- If there isn't, then should we merge them away?
Thank you in advance for your help and wisdom! :)