Robert Clarke, Surveyor-General of Maryland

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Robert Clarke (Clark), Surveyor-General of Maryland

Also Known As: "The Immigrant", "Robert Clarke the Surveyor"
Birthplace: of, London, Middlesex, England
Death: Died in Charles County, Maryland
Immediate Family:

Husband of Winifred Clarke; Eleanor Clarke and Winifred Clarke
Father of Thomas Clarke; Mary Compton; John Clarke and Robert Clarke

Occupation: Surveyor
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Robert Clarke, Surveyor-General of Maryland

Robert Clarke, the "Immigrant" and Surveyor-General of Maryland, was born between 1610 & 1611. [1]


  • He immigrated on the ship Unity in 1637 to Maryland as a single man at age 27 [2].


  1. to Eleanor Clarke; 2 children. [3]
  2. to Winifred Seyborne Greene; 2 children.
  3. to Jane Hicks Cockshoot/Causine, but had no issue. (disputed)

Children from first marriage of Robert & Eleanor Clarke:

  1. John Clarke b. c1642/4 mar. Ann
  2. Mary Clarke b. c1646.

From second marriage to Winifred Seyborne Greene:

  1. Robert Clarke II, b. Mar. 1652, who married (1) Sarah Combs and (2) Elizabeth Hodgkins. Robert Clarke II owned "Addition" and died in 1725. In will of Robert Clarke II (1652-1725) was listed Ann Osborne.
  2. Thomas Clarke b. Dec. 25, 1654, mar. (1) Ann Barber, d/o Dr. Luke Barber (2) Julian Mudd, d/o Thomas Mudd. Thomas Clarke d. 1711; wife Julian Mudd Clarke mar. (2) Mathew Guibert.

The Surveyor-General of St. Mary's County, Maryland

In the Morse Papers at the Maryland Historical Society in Baltimore is the following bibliography of the Hon. Robert Clarke:

The Hon. Robert Clarke arrived within four years of the settlement of St. Mary's with a shipment of goods for the Indians. He was a friend of Father Copley, a Jesuit priest. In 1639, he represented a Roman Catholic Missionary. Since there was such persecution of the Catholics in early years, Father Copley took several names. Robert Clarke was prominent in the colony and sat as a FREEMAN in the legislature.

On Aug 11, 1648, he was appointed Surveyor-General of all singular castles, lordships, manors and forests and to enjoy all rights and privileges of that office.

Robert Clarke was described as a Gentleman of high caliber, integrity and ability. He was a member of the Assembly when the TOLERATION ACT was passed in 1649; in 1651, he occupied the post of Steward with power to hold Court Baron for CALVERTON, a manor of ten thousand acres for the secure habitation of six nations of Indians who desired to put themselves under government protection.

During the Puritan ascendancy, he openly confessed his faith in the Catholic church. He surrendered at the BATTLE OF SEVERN, 1655, and was taken PRISONER by the PURITANS. He was treated as a REBEL and SENTENCED to be HANGED. He was saved by PETITION, fined 10,000 pds. of tobacco. Unable to pay, he surrendered his plantation having REFUSED TO RENOUNCE his church. A year later, when Clarke was found to be in dire distress, the Protestant court reduced his fine & restored his plantations.


  1. His date of birth can be found in two separate sources: (a) Robert Clarke, Immigrant Robert Clerke(sic), in ABH81:117, 17, 74-75. (b) Thomas Copely, Esq. in ABH22:60, 117, 20, 25 (1:folio 115-118).
  2. Robert Clarke immigrated in 1637 to Maryland. He gave his age as 27, and was single in 1637. [Liber ABH:403; Ship List Liber 2, f. 425]
  3. Eleanor Clarke was transported by John Cockshoot and his wife Jane Hicks. Jane Hicks Cockshoot/Causine later became the third wife of Robert Clarke I.



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Robert Clarke, Surveyor-General of Maryland's Timeline

London, Middlesex, England
Age 31
Charles County, Province of Maryland
Age 35
St. Mary's , Maryland
March 1652
Age 41
St. Mary's County, Province of Maryland
December 25, 1654
Age 43
Charles County, Province of Maryland
July 21, 1664
Age 53
Charles County, Maryland