Facts and Events
Biography of Michael Cleek
- From William T. Price's "Historical Sketches of Pocahontas Co, WV" (reprinted by McClain Publishing, Parsons, WV, 1963; originally published by Price Brothers, Marlinton, WV, 1901):
- The ancestor of the Cleek relationship in Pocahontas County was Michael Cleek, who was one of the earlier pioneers ty occupy the attrative portion of the Knapps Creek valley adjacent to Driscol, and came from Bath County. His wife was Margaret Henderson Crawford, whose father was from Lancaster, Pa., and lived in Bath County, near Windy Cove.
- Michael Cleek opened the lands comprised in the Peter L. Cleek, William H. Cleek, and Benjamin F. Fleshman properties - the persons just named being his grandchildren. With the exception of two or three very small clearings, it was a primitive, densely unbroken forest of white pine and sugar maple. He built a log cabin on the site of the new stable, and some years subsequently reared a dwelling of hewn timer, now the old stable at Peter L. Cleek's. The late John Cleek, father of Peter and Williams, and who was the oldest of the family, could just remember when his parents settled here. They came out by the way of Little Back Creek, crossing the Alleghany Mountain opposite Harper's. His mother carried him in her lap, horseback, all the way from Windy Cove.
- Michael Cleek's family consisted of three sons, John, William, and Jacob; and three daughters, Elizabeth, Barbara, and Violet.
- Elizabeth married Jesse Hull of Anthony's Creek. Their children were William Crawford, John, who died in the war; Jesse, Andrew, Mrs Margaret McDermott, on Little Anthony's Creek; Mrs Eveline Fleshman, Mrs Alcinda Stephenson, of Bath County; and Mrs Charlotee Fertig, of Anthony's Creek.
- Barbara and Violet, the other daughters of the pioneer Michael Cleek, died in early childhood of the "cold plague," and their brother Jacob died of the same disease, aged eighteen years.
- William Cleek never married, and spent most of his life with his brother John. The attachment these brothers had for each other was noticed and admired by all their acquaintances. They never seemed so well contented as when in each others company. His wit and good humor was remarkable. If all his funny harmless anecdotes could be recalled and written up, the result would be a very humorous book indeed, and nobody's feelings wounded thereby. He could be fecetious without hurting any one's feelings -- a gift rarely possessed by humorists. He told most of his jokes on himself.
- It now remains to make further mention of John Cleek, the eldest son of William Cleek's pioneer home. He married Phoebe Ann Lightner, a daughter of Peter Lightner.
- John Cleek spent his life on the home farm. His family consisted of three sons, Peter Lightner, William Henderson, and Shelton Washington. The daughters were Mary Ann, Caroline Elizabeth, Alcinda Susan, Margaret Eveline, and Eliza Martha.
- Mary Ann was first married to Josiah Herold. She was left a widow, and afterwards married William C. Hull. Her daughters are Mrs Patterson Poage and Mis Tokey Hull.
- Caroline Elizabeth married the late Lanty Lockridge.
- Alcinda Susan married Hugh Dever, and is now in Nebraska.
- Margaret Eveline married Renick Ward, late of Randolph County, and lives in Colorado.
- Shelton W. Cleek died in infancy.
- William H. Cleek married Margaret Jane Fleshman. He died in 1899.
- Peter L. Cleek married Effie May Amiss. The pleasant home occupied by them is near the original site, across the valley from the public road, and near the foot hills of the Alleghany. Formerly the main road passed by the old Cleek homestead, crossing and recrossing the valley for teh convenience of the residents. Thus the traveler would cover a good many miles in making but little progress in direct distance. as matters were in former times.