Dr. Sibree Clarke was born on the 2nd of July, 1833 in Coventry, England. He was the 5th of 9 children born to the Rev. William Clarke and the former Mary Anne Fletcher. His father was an Anglican Minister and his siblings were; William Fletcher Clarke, John Fitzgerald Clarke, Mary Ann Clarke, Eliza Clarke, Philip Henry Clarke, Maria C. Clarke, Martha Clarke and Fanny Whitmore Clarke. Dr. Sibree Clarke’s family emigrated from England in 1837. According to the 1851 census, the Clarke family was living in Simcoe (Norfolk County) and Dr. Clarke’s occupation was listed as an engineer.
Dr. Clarke married Isabella Miller on the 12th of October, 1859 in Dresden. Dr. and Mrs. Clarke were married by Dr. Clarke’s father and his brother Phillip Clarke was married to Isabella Miller’s sister Charlotte Glen Miller at the same ceremony.
Mrs. Clarke was born on the 28th of February, 1836 in Kilbirnie, North Ayrshire, Scotland. She was the eldest of 8 children born to James Glen Miller and the former Jean “Jane” McNish. Mrs. Clarke’s siblings were; Mary Banks Miller (who did not survive childhood), Charlotte Glen Miller, James Miller, Sophia Miller, Twins John and Sarah Miller, Ebenezer Miller and George Murray Miller. Between 1848 and 1850, Mrs. Clarke’s family immigrated to Xenia, Ohio. According to the 1850 census, Mr. Miller was a teacher in Xenia and Mrs. Clarke’s siblings, John, Sarah and Ebenezer Miller were born in Xenia. According to the 1861 census the Miller family was living in Tilbury, Ontario and her father’s occupation was listed as a doctor.
Dr. and Mrs. Clarke had 8 children all born in Dresden; Fanny Belle Clarke (born 29 September of 1860), John Sibree Clarke (born 06 September, 1863), Catherine Marie Clarke (born in 1865), Gertrude Clarke (born in 1867), William (born in 1869) , Maud Clarke (born on the 14th of October, 1873), Mable Clarke (born on the 25th of September, 1875) and Jane Clarke (born 20 May, 1879 and died 14 months later from pneumonia).
Dr. Clarke was listed in the 1869 Province of Ontario Gazetteer and Directory. It states that Dr. Clarke is an M.D. and a druggist. The 1870 Sutherland’s Gazetteer Business Directory, reflects Dr. Sibree Clarke was an M.D., a telegraph agent and he sold medicines. According to the 1892 Ontario Medical Register, Dr. Clarke joined the College of Physicians and Surgeons on the 4th of July, 1877. In the 1880 Kent County Directory, it states that he was a physician and his office and residence were located on Metcalfe Avenue in Dresden.
Dr. Clarke was initiated into the Masons on the 9th of January, 1871. He belonged to the Sydenham Lodge No. 255 in Dresden. Dr. Clarke served on the Dresden Town Council in 1873.
According to the 1882 Ontario Medical Register, Dr. Clarke is noted as being in medical practice prior to the 1st of January, 1850 and he was certified by The Homeopathic Members of Council.
In 1883, Dr. Clarke and his family moved to New Westminster, British Columbia. There he opened a drug store with his partner S. D. Curtis. In 1885 he moved to Kamloops, British Columbia and opened a pharmacy. Dr. Clarke was appointed as a coroner on the 4th of August, 1886. The 1890 Henderson’s Gazetteer and Directory recognized Dr. Clarke as being a physician and surgeon in Kamloops. Dr. Clarke became the first mayor of Kamloops in 1893 and he served for 6 months. That same year he was elected Grand Master of the British Columbia Masons and served until 1894. Dr. Clarke was also a member of the I.O.O.F. and he was the Grand Master of the B.C. Masons from 1893 until 1894.
In 1907, at the age of 75, Dr. Clarke opened a drug store in Lillooet, B.C. He followed up, with another drug store in Ashcroft B.C. (The Lillooet store burned down in 1917.) Dr. Clarke still served as a coroner and managed his drug store’s in Ashcroft and Kamloops.
Mrs. Clarke died in Salmon Arm, British Columbia on the 27th of July, 1912. Dr. Clarke died on the 8th of May, 1919 in Kamloops. Dr. and Mrs. Clarke were buried at the Pleasant Street Cemetery, in Kamloops.
*Dr. Clarke’s brother John Fitzgerald Clarke also became a physician. He died on the 19th of April, 1887 in Thunder Bay, Ontario. The death record recorded his name, Dr. John Clarke and listed his profession as the Sheriff of Thunder Bay.
**Mrs. Clarke’s brother Ebenezer Miller lived in Dresden with Dr. and Mrs. Clarke according to the 1871 census. He remained in Dresden and worked as a “druggist” after Dr. and Mrs. Clarke moved to British Columbia. Ebenezer Miller died in Essex County on the 7th of July, 1900 but his residence was listed as Dresden on his death record.