Pictures of Probate Judges now hanging

March 23, 2017

Clare County Historical Society member Jon H. Ringelberg recently undertook the project of hanging pictures of the Clare County Probate Court Judges in the Probate Courtroom.   “It was a project that needed to be done”, according to Ringelberg, a former Clare County District Judge.

The project involved researching the names and years of service of Clare County’s past 15 Probate Judges serving both part-time and full time since 1871.  The present Probate Judge, Marcy Klaus, elected in 2012, is full-time and serves in both Clare and Gladwin Counties.

A picture of Judge ALEXANDER E. WYLIE, 1937 – 1940, was obtained within 24 hours following a search on together with an e-mail to a descendant living in Hawaii.  It was learned that Clare County was ahead of the times in having a female Probate Judge, Donna Hecker, who served in 1957 through 1960.  Yet to be found are pictures of 3 past Probate Judges — ELIJAH D. WHEATON, 1873 – 1876  &  1881 – 1888; GEORGE W. JEFFERIES, 1877 – 1880; and FRANK McLELLAN,1893 – 1896.  If anyone knows of a family descendant or of a picture of one or more of these Probate Judges, please contact Jon H. RIngelberg.

Probate Judge, Marcy Klaus and Historical Society  Member Jon H. Ringelberg.

Probate Judge, Marcy Klaus and Historical Society
Member Jon H. Ringelberg.

Mrs. Deb Loesel and Artistic Engraving contributed in the project.  Probate Court Administrator and Referee Darrell Schlese assisted in facilitating the project.  He noted that Judge Klaus is extremely pleased with the addition to the Probate Courtroom and thanked the Clare County Historical Society for undertaking the project.

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