William Clarke was born on 3 Jul 1656 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts. When he was two years old, they moved to Northampton and William was carried there in a pannier/basket on horseback.
He took the Oath of Allegiance from Major Pynchon on February 8, 1676 in Northampton, MA. At age 20, in May 1676, he was one of 22 soldiers of Northampton who took part in the Falls Fight under Capt. William Turner.
He married Anna Griswold on 7 Mar 1678 in Saybrook Manor, Middlesex, CT.
He married Hannah Strong on 15 Jul 1680.
After King Philip’s War, William assisted his father in the resettlement of Northfield from 1682-1690 and served as administrator of his father’s estate in 1690. He was Selectman for Northampton in 1694 and 1696. Northampton vital records show William was a freeman in 1690.After Hannah died on 31 Jan 1693/1694 in Lebanon at age 34, William married Mary Smith on 31 Jan. 1694-5.
In 1698, except for his oldest daughter, who had married, William and his family moved to Lebanon where he was one of 51 original proprietors. He became a large landowner and prominent citizen of Lebanon, Connecticut.
On 2 May 1700, he and Josiah Dewey purchased a large tract of wilderness from Owanecho , Sachem of the Mohegan Ondians who claimed land rights under Uncas, the title being afterward confirmed by the government. This tract of land in the north part of town became known "The Clarke and Dewey Purchase."
He was the first representative of Lebanon in 1705 in the general assembly, and continued in that office for 13 years. He was also a selectman sixteen years and town clerk from 1700 to 1725. He served as Justice of the Peace for New London County from 1708 – 1724. He was captain of the militia and served in several wars with the Indians.
In May 1717, he was appointed Justice of the Peace and Quorum. From June 1717 – June 1724, his name appears regularly as one of the Justices in the records of the New London County Court. He was a member of the Governor’s Council in 1719 and 1721 and Deputy again in 1723 and 1724. He was Speaker of the House in 1723. He was Judge of the Probate Court, District of Windham, from May 1723 until his death.
He died on 9 May 1725 in Lebanon, Connecticut. His Headstone at Old Cemetery Lebanon, New London, Connecticut reads: “Here lives what was mortal of Capt. William Clark, Esq. who died May ye 9th 1725 and in ye 69th year of his age.”
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