Clarence Burdette Sperry

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Tina Hursh
September 29, 2000

The History of West Virginia, Old and New
Published 1923, The American Historical Society, Inc.
Chicago and New York, Volume 111
Pg. 365

Clarence Burdette Sperry. The firm of Sperry & Sperry, lawyers, has for many
years enjoyed an enviable reputation in the Harrison County bar, a county that
has given some of the most distinctive abilities to the professional affairs of
the state. The members of this firm are Melvin G. and Clarence Burdette Sperry,
brothers, natives of West Virginia.

Their father was the late Rev. Ezra Cortland Sperry, who was born in Cortland,
New York, in 1827. The energies of this life were divided between his duties
as a Baptist minister and as a farmer. He removed to Harrison County in 1851,
and died January 9, 1908. His wife was Mary M. Patton, who was born and reared
in Harrison County. They became the parents of a large family, those growing
to maturity being Edgar A., Mary C., Alexander L., Leonora, Rulina, Melvin G.,
Ezra C., Clarence B., Ernest V., Earl M., Ida L. and Percy C.

Clarence Burdette Sperry was born on his father’s farm in Doddridge County,
West Virginia, October 10, 1869. The country was his environment during his
youth, and he finished a public school education and for three terms taught
school. He spent two years in the law school of the University of West
Virginia at Morgantown, was admitted to the bar, and in 1900 became associated
with his brother Melvin G. Sperry in the firm of Sperry & Sperry at Clarksburg.
Mr. Sperry has also been interested in gas and other industrial development in
his section of the state.

He is a democrat in politics, is affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd
Fellows and Elks and is a member of the Baptist Church. At Clarksburg April
16, 1908, he married Margaret O. McKinley, who was born in Harrison County in
1885, daughter of William P. McKinley. Her father was a Union soldier in the
Civil war and a native of Harrison County. Mr. and Mrs. Sperry have one
daughter, Margaret Eleanor, born March 3, 1909.