The McClure Family/McClures in New York

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Rev. James Gore King McClure, D. D., President of the McCormick Theological Seminary, Chicago, was b. at Albany. N. Y., Nov. 24, 1848, and graduated at Yale College 1870, Princeton Seminary, 1873.

Under date of Oct. 22, 1910, he gave me the following statement: "My own branch of the McClures came to Albany, N. Y., in 1801, from the north of Ireland. We never have been able to connect ourselves with any other branches of the McClures in America, nor have we been able to ascertain anything about the original family in the north of Ireland, My grandfather's name was Archibald McClure, and his wife, Elizabeth Craigmiles. There are various family traditions about the character and life of my ancestors in the north of Ireland, but they afford no definite historical basis for the ascertaining of a geneaological line."

I learn from another source that Archibald McClure, before emigrating to America, resided in or near Belfast. There is a family tradition that his ancestors in Scotland, during the persecution of the Covenanters, were once hidden under a load of hay, into which the soldiers thrust their weapons, but without doing injury to those concealed. See page 13.

There is a village near the Delaware River in Broome County, N. Y., called McClure Settlement, probably of the Pennsylvania family. There are a number of McClures in New York City, among them a prominent law firm, David and John McClure.

Samuel Sidney McClure, founder of McClure's Magazine, was born at Drumaglea, County Antrim, Ireland, Feb. 17, 1857. He states in his Autobiogrophy (1913) that his family came to Ireland from Galloway, Scotland, about two hundred years ago. It is stated elsewhere that his remote ancestor was Daniel McLewer, supposedly descended from the Huguenot family of De la Charois, of noble French extraction which claims descent from John, Duke of Gascony. This Daniel may be the same Daniel McLewer who was an Elder attending Templepatrick Presbytery, Ulster, 1738.

His mother, Elizabeth Gaston, descended from a French Huguenot family that came to Ireland after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Mary Gaston, the mother of Dr. William McClure, who died at New Bern, N. C, 1804, doubtless belonged to this same stock.

S. S. McClure, speaking of his grandfather, Samuel McClure, said: "He was a man so constituted that he not only would not yield in opinion—he could not. I believe before changing his mind on a point on which he had determined, he might have been tied to the ground and cut to pieces inch by inch."

Rev. William Ramsey, in his letter published in the Autobiography, says of William McClure, brother of Samuel, "There are no doubt many of his equals in honesty and principal, but none could exceed him or his family, or indeed any of the McClures. He is often in my mind, not only as a devoted Christian, but as so upright in word and deed that, when I lost him I knew of none to fill his place in my heart."

Samuel McClure had seven sons, among them Thomas McClure (1832-1860). His widow, Elizabeth (Gaston) McClure, with her four sons, Samuel, b. 1857, John, b. 1858, Thomas, b. 1860, and Robert B., came to America, settling in Indiana, 1866. Robert B. McClure died at Yonkers, N. Y., May 30, 1914.

Mr. Hugh S. McClure, with the American Exchange National Bank, New York, belongs to a family that lived at Dernock, near Bollymoney County, Antrim. His father, Rev. Samuel McClure, ministered at Cross-roads, near Londonderry, where he died 1874. Has a brother, Rev. John J. McClure, D. D., Capetown, South Africa.