What I Know of the McClendons
The McClendon Letters
~ before 1893 ~

Henderson County Kentucky
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       Joel McClendon - Henderson Co., Ky.
       His son-in-law, Hugh B. Chandler
       Before 1893

What I Know of the McClendons
By Joel McClendon

       The McClendons first called MackLenans was descendants of Ireland known as the elans of the Celtic. A clan of one thousand four hundred Celtics with Saint Colman Mack Lenas the highest Chief or Lord who died in 603 as their leader; after fighting all around in Ionay and Lorna with a big battle at Invearnes where they lost they went back to Glenshiel and lived many many years. About 1260 a great number went over to Kental to live. The great chief Gillicorm was killed at Dumberlit in 1325 then his son Kroter took over leadership.

       Critas, another son, saved himself by hiding around Loaban and went by that name in the place called Dumberlet. The Mack Lenans held high honors in all the many many battles, refusing to retreat or change sides.

       The Scotch and Irishmen as most others had only one name until Conquest of the Norman in 1066 told everybody they had to have a first and last name so they got busy and found them a surname taken from most anything Jay-birds or flour Miller - Tailor, thorn, bush so on.

       The first family of Mack Lenans later spelled different ways - now McClendon lived in northern part of Skotland. I think they were called most anything at first as they were strong healthy, religious people - with one God as their guide - Finanans, Lougans, Rushshire, each wearing their honor symbol on their sleeves in battles so on down until it was selected as their Coat of Arms. After many spelling changes - An Emigrant called Dennis brought several people making a colony in North Carolina decided to settle the spelling once for all and spelt it McClendon.

       A tradition is that the people of the early Celtic wove cloth in many beautiful colors using dye from wild plants, each tribe having certain colors - to distinguish from others - the McClendons being glowing light and dark red with green and blue blocks - this family carries a mark of high distinction and honor. Another trade was they raised sheep in Scotland, obtaining wool for weaving cloth using the dye from wild plants. Each tribe wore his traditional colors and had a separate war cry. It has been handed down by my Mothers that McClendons did not migrate to America until about 1700 and that was the Emigrant -Dennis - a name that you find in many families was why Hugh named your fourth son Dennis McClendon Chandler and I hope Dennis names some of his boys McClendon so can keep the name in the family. I hope and believe Dennis will be like the McClendons in Roeshire, Skotland for many years called Loagens that raised sheep - they were strong, healthy, well-built, tall, highly cultured men that feared God and lived by Him.

       See my father’s picture, tall, upright, all round manly structure with beard growing down to the floor, my mother said Bill, Jesse and I made him chuckle as we ran our little fingers through it. She said when working he plated it, hung it over his shoulders and pined it with safety pins to the back of his overalls. She said people stopped him inquiring about his beard.

       My mother was confused as to my father’s ancestors. She mentioned a Dennis and Thomas at first said one and then the other was my grandparents. She said I was named for a Joel and Jesse was named for a Jesse in the family and William was named for both sides of the family. I wanted to get this straight for the family -but my time had to be spent in raising my family, keeping people from stealing my land, law suits, setting my children up in homes when they married, keeping some of their men from running through their land, burying and putting up markers -there’s Elizabeth that married Wm. White. I want to get them a tombstone. They’re at the right of Susan Alice and I know if she dies after me she won’t have one, as Bill tried his best to run thru her land and steal it, see the suit their kids and I had to keep him from getting it; he wanted it so he could marry that Sarah William woman.

       My mother spoke of a McClendon Creek in North Carolina, that John McClendon signed over and a Joel McClendon and Samuel in Anson County and that Joel had a patent on 300 on McClendon Creek in 1757 or 59 and Joel had land in Cumberland County about 1758. She said there was so many Joels, Dennis, Thomas, Jesse’s and John’s that she didn’t know we three boys’ granddaddy. Hugh, you are good at this so get it all straight so your children will know about their ancestors.

       She tried to tell me something about them being called Logans and later McClendons and one of the Logans was killed on his way to Jersualem and with him was Sir Chief Robert so he went on married one Robert’s daughter and made Admiral of Scotland. Maby I should not write about the McClendons as I know such little, only what my mother said and she was confused, but she told about Joel and a Mark Allen that some one said was not loyal to the government but at their trial, they were released as innocent, That happened in Revolutionary War. He could have been my grandfather, but she didn’t know - when he was born, only I was named for a Joel. Then she said a Joel was Ensign in Navy in the ’70’s. I wish I could prove he was my grandfather - Maby you can, Hugh. She said she thought my father had a brother Joel or maybe his uncle.

       My mother described the McClendon’s as being honest, leaders in church and education affairs, fair and just in all business affairs. They were tall, loved by all classes, of people, because they possessed the above traits with courtesy and respect to all and were great storytellers in their hunorous way; attending Church regularly mostly Baptist and Presbyterians. They were doctors, preachers, farmers, teachers, lawyers, etc. just average people helping to build America in different sekons of the country.

       Sometimes my mother said she thought my father was a descendant of Thomas McClendon that was born in Skotland about 1680 or 85 as he and Eleanor Brush had a Joel, Jacob, Dennis and a Thomas and John. Some of them went to Georgia, Mississippi, Tennessey and other places. I guess if that was right he was the son of the old man emigrant Dennis.

       So Hugh, guess I will dye not knowing about my ancestors - that is reason I am trying to leave a history of my family in deeds, wills, suits and the like and the McClendon Cemetery for our family maby you can locate all the forefathers for your family. Keep a record of your family, maby a history of us can be wrote by some of our later generation.

       You see I have a tombstone for brother Jesse up so when he dies he can buried there; his wifes are buried in Union County, then there is brother William here his children said they wood get him one beside Jesse if they don’t I will get one.

       So you see how I have kept us boys family together and I want you to do the same. May mother is buried beside my daddy with sandstone markers names carved with a knife. I don’t know nor do I care where her other man is buried. He sold her gold rings, fine clothes and furniture.

Go ahead with this Hugh -
Your Sallies daddy
Joel McClendon

Joel McClendon-7
(Benjamin-6; Joel-5; Dennis D. Sr.-4; Thomas-3; Dennis-2; John-1)

       Joel McClendon was born in 1803 in Henderson Co. (now Webster Co.), Kentucky, to Benjamin F. McClendon and Sarah (surname unknown). He died on 5 Jun 1886 in Dixon, Kentucky. He is buried in Dixon, Kentucky, in McClendon/Chandler Cemetery. He was married ca. 1820 in Kentucky to Sarah “Sallie” Frier. She was born in Jun 1798. She died on 10 Feb 1875 in Dixon, Kentucky. She is buried in Dixon, Kentucky, in McClendon/Chandler Cemetery. It is possible that Sarah was married to one James McClendon in Christian Co., Kentucky, in 1815, according to Christian Co. marriage records.
       A picture of Joel is in the possession of Robert Wallace.. He appears to be in his middle years. Personal research by Ora Chandler - granddaughter.

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