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CLARENCE EUGENE PEARSALL

Pearsall Family; vol. III; Chapter 37, section 9

At one time Clarence E. Pearsall was strongly Inclined to leave out this book his own story As it appears in Chapter Fifty-five, and merely Publish the family history. This would have been a misfortune as the book would have been very sadly incomplete without this relation of the experiences of a pioneer in this western Country, not because o anything personal to Mr. Pearsall, but because in his wonderful Relation he has recounted and summed up the family characteristics in a manner that would not have otherwise been possible. As a act one may go from any chapter in the book to his story and not experience any break in the family history. He was a finished story teller, Trained in the greatest of schools, namely the many years he lived with the Indians and listened to their tales told with the same skill that entered into the old Norse sagas. The writer has been over very nearly every foot of the ground, except Central America, covered in this recital and, strange as it may seem, he was there at about the times mentioned by Clarence E. Pearsall, so that he is acquainted with the geographical setting, and while he has heard the story told several times, and has read it many more times, in the preparation of this family history, nevertheless, he does not recall any recital by which he has been so well entertained or which so vividly portrays the life of the westerner; nor does he know of anything which so truly pictures the family characteristics o the Pearsalls as they have existed.-----H.L.N.

CLARENCE EUGENE PEARSALL, son of George Alfred Pearsall, Chapter 37, Section 8; born January 29, 1863; resided in Eureka, Humboldt Co., California; died October 3, 1928, in San Francisco, California; married first, September 9, 1886, Gertrude Edna Andrews, daughter of Alonzo Andrews and his wife Caroline E. Long of Brookville, Pa. Gertrude E. Andrews was born April 22, 1869, and died April 12, 1891; buried at Brookville, Pa. He married second January 16, 1898, Hettie May Wilson, daughter of David Wilson and his wife Hettie Alzeda Johnson. She was born April 24, 1874. No children.
Child of first marriage. --
1. Henry Cornell Pearsall, born March 4, 1891; died March 23, 1891. Vol. I, chapter one

During the summer vacations spent on my grandfather’s farm in Pennsylvania, I was most Pleasantly entertained when he so frequently spoke of his father Peter Pearsall, and related anecdotes of his own boyhood spent on the farm near Saratoga Springs in New York State. My curiosity was aroused, and all my years I had longed to see the place where he had lived as a boy. As a natural sequence, a promise made in the year 1915 to my aunt and sister to investigate their children’s eligibility to membership in “The Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution.” revived these fond Recollections and re-kindled old desires to visit the Peter Pearsall farm. After a short visit the next year at my former home in Pennsylvania, I hastened to New York City, and thence to Saratoga Springs, where, with almost childish anticipation, I expected to find the Pearsalls thicker than grasshoppers in a Kansas corn field. To my great disappointment, not one was to be found, save those who reposed in the cemeteries. Unable to ascertain Whence the living had gone, I determined to locate, if possible, the old Pearsall farm and pay a visit to the scenes to often depicted to me by my grandfather in boyhood. I therefore Repaired to Ballston Spa, County Seat of Saratoga County, where a careful perusal of the index of volume after volume revealed absolutely nothing of interest. Bitterly disappointed I resolved to journey to Albany and consult the records there. Then the motto “Try, try again” came to mind so I decided to make a more thorough search at Ballston before my departure. This time my efforts were rewarded. I found a deed signed by George Pearsall, Jr. and his wife Priscilla in which the lands were described as being part of the Peter Pearsall farm, bought by John Muller and being part of Lots 1 and 4 of subdivision of lot 1, of the 18th enlargement, by which technical language the records located the property for me. This information in hand, I returned to Saratoga Springs, engaged an automobile and drove out on the highway towards Lake George. When the odometer clicked off two miles, the drier stopped as previously directed and I alighted. No one lived At this particular point so after a careful survey of the surrounding country, we drove a mile distant to a brick house, which turned out to be the former home of the Brills. There I was informed that we had passed the Pearsall farm, so we returned to the cross roads, which they informed me, was formerly known as Pearsall’s Corners. I alighted from the auto and leisurely walked about the old farm. A very nice lady, very nearly a relation, in that here sister had married into the Brill family, informed me that I was in the promised land of my childhood. I picked wild cherries from a tall tree along the roadside, which had no doubt been planted by Peter Pearsall, and as I ate the delicious ripe cherries, I dreamed of the dim and distant past when my grandfather as a boy ad probably enjoyed fruit from the same tree. I wandered about the old farm and memory pictures, faded in the lapse of years, were gradually restored. There was Peter’s old saw mill, now used as a granary. The old white pine stumps in the pond were relics of the great pine forest Peter had felled for the mill. Beyond the main thoroughfare was Peter’s old home, a two story structure of old Dutch colonial style. True it was badly in need of repairs, still it retained its lines of former grace and grandeur. The interior was formerly in keeping with the exterior. I marveled that a home of this character should have been built upon a farm in those days. The furniture, of which grandfather had often spoken, was missing but the cartulary, or strong box, in which, according to the old English custom of my ancestors, the deeds, wills, other important papers and treasures were kept, remained and at the present is used by the occupants of the house as a wood box. At the base of a low range of hills, back of the house, nestled in a grove of oak and wild cherry, is the family burying ground where my great grandmother, Mary Burtis Pearsall and my great great grandfather George Pearsall and his second wife repose waiting for the great day of judgment. On that cold gray autumn day, carried away with enthusiasm, my spirits soared to the very highest, and, as I sauntered about this beautiful, highly cultivated farm, that fairly teemed with interest, my one regret was that Peter Pearsall ever allowed so valuable a farm to slip away from him; and I wondered what could have been the cause, little dreaming that I should later learn that It was because of his very adherence to the customs of his ancestors. Strange as it may seem, another Pilgrim, on a similar mission, from that far off state where the setting sun casts its brilliant rays through the Golden Gate, crossed my path on the old farm, that afternoon; a descendant of John Brill, brother of my grandmother, Deborah-Ann Brill-Pearsall. Prior to this, neither of us had known of the existence of the other. She passed on and I returned to my dreams. Awakened therefrom by the rudely honking auto horn, I was reminded of the lateness of the hour. Happy with the results of the day, I returned to Saratoga Springs, resolved to write the genealogy of my immediate branch of the family. As I spent considerable time and money unraveling the threads of my ancestry, I had to call upon those who were not in my immediate family, and I soon accumulated a wealth of material relative to other lines. The thought, that there might be others equally as interested as I, determined me to broaden my work so as to include all of the Pearsalls in America. Later I came in touch with a branch of the family in Australia and through them came to know the cousins in England. So almost before I knew it I had complied material for a history of the family, starting from living members of the family on both sides of the ocean and in Australia as well, an incident which, of itself, I am told is very remarkable in works in this kind.

Glenn Pearsall discovered Peter Pearsalls house survived after all of these years. There are some loveyly pictures taken by Glenn of Peter Pearsall's home.

If you would like to view them please ( CLICK HERE)

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