22 July 2007


While the rest of the world was reading Harry Potter, I spent the weekend planning my trip to Britain and doing some genealogical research.

I finished reading the Let's Go Britain guide book that I bought a few weeks ago and spend a considerable amount of time on the internet. I discovered some very cool mapping tools from google maps that I will share with you in my next post. Right now, I'm still planning out the trip.

I was all jazzed this morning (at 3:00 a.m. and at 9:00 a.m... I sort of slept in between). My sister did some research a while back on the Clement side of our family and discovered that indeed we were related to the Vikings. I spend a considerable amount of time digging into those roots.

If we are indeed descendants of Rollo the 1st Duke of Normandy, and we are indeed descendants of Olaf, King of Norway, I have found the link between these families. Although we are not DIRECT descendants of Rollo, there is a connection between the two. I found it! It was an exhilarating moment!

Well, push forward from Rollo, who founded Normandy around 0912 and it's really easy to trace his lineage to William the Conquerer who invaded (and ruled) England beginning in 1066. That's where the trail cools, well, frankly, freezes. Skip 700 years to Richard Clement born around 1712 in either Essex or Berkshire England who fathered Henry Clement (born around 1760) who fathered John Clement (born on Oct. 19, 1783) who was the father of several children who left their home in Eddington, Berkshire, England to make a new life in Canada, USA, New Zealand and Australia (luckily one child stayed home -- the youngest, of course!). His son Benjamin moved to the US and had a ridiculous number of children... one of which eventually produced a son who produced a son, who produced a son, who eventually produced, you guessed it, yours truly.

I spent a considerable amount of time searching for ancestors of Richard, but could find nothing. I'm not sure we ever knew about Richard, but I have a poor memory, so this may not have been a new discovery. I think Richard married a woman named Elizabeth, but I'm not even sure about that. As as to who his parent were... well, I'm hoping that nugget of information has not been lost to history. I mean, after all, I still have 700 years of generations to sift through to find the connection between the Clement family and William the Conquerer. I know there is a connection, but finding it may prove to be quite a chore.

After dead-ending at Richard Clement, I switched to the Campbell family. Wow. I must have been on over-load of genealogical research because I just couldn't figure any of that out. There are 4 branches of the Campbells and I'd like to know specifically which one I am descended from so I know which tartans to buy when I am in Scotland!

I really wonder how many people in the world search for their ancestry. It seems to be a unique characteristic of the "new world" nations. I get to embrace so much of the Scots, Germans, English, French, Vikings... as my own! I find my history so rich with culture and so mysterious. Yet, if I lived in Normandy now, would I be so obsessed with figuring out who my ancestors are? Would I be more obsessed with cave paintings in southern France, wondering if they were my ancestors? In the end, don't we all (Europeans, that is) come from essentially a pretty small band of Cro-magnon who kicked out or killed the Neanderthals from Europe?

Such a fascinating study. I could spend my life trying to figure it out!! In the meantime, I will work on bridging the 700 year gap.


  1. Carolyn Clement31/8/07 05:14

    You couldn't find the Clement/Viking connection because the line (that I've found, anyway) traces back through mom's side, not dad's. It goes like this: You, Andrew & me -> mom -> Evaline -> Verna May -> Hattie Culver -> Nancy Jane Frazee -> James Lytle Frazee -> Joshua Frazee -> Stephen Frazee m. Hannah Gifford -> Ananiah Gifford Jr. -> Ananiah (Ananias/Hannaniah) Gifford Sr. -> William Gifford of Sandwich, Mass. [William Gifford was quite a character. A staunch Quaker, he was brought before the court and fined many times for refusing to swear allegiance to the state, and for participation in Quaker meetings. He was whipped and banished in Stamford, CT in 1647 or before for his Quaker beliefs. He also was fined for fornication with his wife before they were married, although this was possibly a "trumped up" charge stemming from the fact that the locals did not accept a Quaker marriage as a valid one. He and a handful of others were the first European settlers and purchasers of land in Monmouth County, NJ, from the locals (some hapless indigenous tribe of people who were quickly evicted, no doubt) This part of NJ is where Frazee's Corners later sprang up.]

    Anyway, I thought you'd be interested in this link:


    Here is where you'll see the direct line through the Giffords (and therefor, us) to Rollo. The bottom of the page starts with Hannahiah Gifford, then follow his father,William Gifford's, paternal line to the top of the page, and you'll see it begins with Rollo in the year 822. The line includes Richard Sans Peur, the Duke of Normandy.

    Now, if you want to go back further, follow Richard Sans Peur's pedigree here:


    It will take you through our ancestors "The Longsword," William 1, Second Duke of Normandy and Rollo, "The Dane", 1st Duke of Normandy, all the way back to King Halfdan Huithein The Old of Norway, and then to The Viking Olaf King of Vermeland, and then Ilgiald King of Sweden , Onund King of Sweden, Yngvar King Of Sweden , Eystein King of Sweden , and Adelis "The Great Of Sweden."

    See, Jules, you really are an Esoteric Viking, and it's through the Bose/Culver/Campbell/Frazee/Gifford side, not the Clements (although there probably are some Viking characters from the Clement and Peterson sides as well...)

    Trevlig resa! (Bon voyage in Swedish)

  2. My wife and I are doing family history on her line and there is a clement line that seems to match up with the work that you are doing starting at JOhn Clement and going back from there. Can we talk? We would love to use your sources in our work. Hope to hear from you soon.

  3. I am a direct descendant of William Gifford of Sandwich...stumbled upon your site after a google search of his name(just felt like fooling around with genealogy this morning). Looking forward to following up on this info. Didn't know I was a Viking, but that does explain some things. :-) Anyway, hi cousins!

  4. I stumbled across your site as I also am an alleged descndent of William Gifford the Quaker. There is some powerful work on the original William G by Paul G of michigan: check out

    but i am happy to contact any giffords as I prepare for my father's 90th birthday in june.

  5. Anonymous16/6/08 15:04

    I'm much interested in exchanging information on these Frazee/Gifford folks. Your Hattie Evaline Campbell Culver is sister to my Ethel Isabelle Campbell who married John Wesley Mock. We do have some photos of the aunts, including Hattie Culver.
    --Jan Tompkins, Columbia MO