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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2014

Origins Available: French-Alt, French

Where did the French leClere family come from? What is the French leClere family crest and coat of arms? When did the leClere family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the leClere family history?

The French name leClere comes from "le clerc," or "the clerk," and as such was an occupational name for a scribe or secretary.


French surnames were subject to numerous alterations in spelling because of the various cultural groups that inhabited specific regions. Eventually, each region possessed its own local dialect of the French language. The early development of the French language, however, was also influenced by other languages. For example, Old French was infused with Germanic words and sounds when barbarian tribes invaded and settled in France after the fall of the Roman Empire. Middle French also borrowed heavily from the Italian language during the Renaissance. As a result of these linguistic and cultural influences, the name leClere is distinguished by a number of regional variations. The many spelling variations of the name include Leclair, Leclaire, Leclaires, Leclère, Leclere, Leclères, Lecleres, Leclert, Lecler, le Clair, le Claire, le Claires, le Clère, le Clere, le Clères, le Clert, le Cler, Clair, Claire, Claires, Clère, Clere, Clères, Clert and many more.

First found in Limousin, where this renowned family held a family seat from ancient times.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our leClere research. Another 197 words(14 lines of text) covering the years 1791, 1793, 1587, 1633, 1622, 1691, 1637, 1714, 1657, 1736, 1711, 1697 and 1774 are included under the topic Early leClere History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 139 words(10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early leClere Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


France was active as a cultural leader in the early 16th century. One particular area in which they lead was the exploration of the New World. The explorers, like Jacques Cartier in 1534, led the way to North America. Champlain, in 1608, made the first of twenty voyages to France to attract settlers and brought the first migrant in 1617. By 1675, there were 7000 French in Quebec, and the French Acadian presence in the Maritimes had reached 500. The French founded Lower Canada, thus becoming one of the two great founding nations of Canada. The family name leClere has made many distinguished contributions in France and New France to the world of science, culture, religion, and education. Amongst the settlers in North America with this distinguished name leClere were

leClere Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Augustus LeClere, who arrived in New York, NY in 1831
  • Frederick LeClere, who arrived in New York in 1831
  • Louis Isidore LeClere, who landed in New York, NY in 1835
  • Alfred Leclere, aged 40, who arrived in America, in 1892
  • Charles Leclere, aged 53, who arrived in America, in 1894

leClere Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century

  • Alphonse Leclere, aged 39, who arrived in America from Jolivet, France, in 1900
  • Camille Leclere, aged 44, who arrived in America, in 1903
  • Victorine Leclere, aged 28, who arrived in America, in 1903
  • Mrs. James Leclere, who arrived in America, in 1904
  • Marie Leclere, aged 45, who arrived in America from Cieux, France, in 1905


  • Michel Leclère (b. 1946), French former motor racing driver
  • Achille-François-René Leclère (1785-1853), French architect and teacher of architecture
  • Adhémar Leclère (1853-1917), French diplomat, economist, politician and ethnologist
  • Alexandra Leclère, French film director, screenwriter and dialogue writer
  • Ernest Leclère, Luxembourg politician in the 1900s


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  1. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  2. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  3. De Ville, Winston. Gulf Coast Colonials, A Compendium of French Families in Early Eighteenth Century Louisiana. Baltimore, MD: Clearfield, 1999. Print.
  4. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  5. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  6. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  7. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  8. Guérard, Albert Léon. France: a Modern History. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1959. Print.
  9. Rupp, Daniel L. A Collection of Upwards of Thirty Thousand Names of German, Swiss, Dutch, French and Other Immigrants to Pennsylvania from 1727 to 1776. Baltimore. Print.
  10. de la Porte, A. Tresor Heraldique. Paris: F. Casterman, 1864. Print.
  11. ...

The leClere Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The leClere Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 23 April 2014 at 08:36.

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