Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Klepper name changed to Clepper

There are a few versions as to how the spelling of the Klepper name changed to Clepper but each story tells of the family running from the law after one or more murders.  Many of the Great Aunts and Uncles did not want the story told but the records are still available...  According to Texas Ranger Sergeant James B. Gillett, John Clepper and his son Lem Clepper were wanted for an "assault to murder" committed on 15 Oct. 1866 in Montgomery County, Texas.  Given the phrase "assault to murder," there may not have been an actual murder but they were fugitives from justice.

"Clepper, John; Clepper, Lem C... Assault to Murder; committed October 15, '66; indicted November 15, same year.  John Clepper is 66 years old, 5 feet 10 inches high, weight 160 pounds, grey hair, dark eyes and complexion.   Lem C. Clepper is 32 years old, 5 feet 11 inches high, weighs 150 pounds, eyes, hair and beard black, dark complexion, is a photographer.  Father and son supposed to be in Bosque County."

Then again, there may have been more than one case... "If my memory is correct - old Pleasant James Klepper (I'm told) killed a man and came to Texas - changing the name to Clepper - so when our John Klepper came to Texas he also changed his name to Clepper.  William Turney Klepper came to Texas but used the Klepper spelling."  -  Lucille (Clepper) Mehrkam, 31 Dec. 2001.

Lucille Mehrkham, History and Genealogy of the Family of Jacob Klepper/Clepper Family and Malcolm McAlpine Family (The Gregath Company, 1996), Library of Congress under card number 86-62751, Page 165
'Fugitives from Justice; The notebook of Texas Ranger Sergeant James B. Gillett'    ISBN 1-880510-37-5    State House Press of Austin, Texas 1997

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