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CLINE Family History

There is much that has been written about the Cline family history, but most of what is written here, I credit to the research of George B. Cline, author of The Cline Families of North Carolina 1750-1860. His extensive research is documented in his book of about 600 pages where he researched each Cline in the North Carolina area during that time frame.

The Kleins (Clines) immigrated to America to escape the unstable and dangerous conditions in their region of Europe in the late 17th and early 18th centuries.  Many of them lived in the area known as the Palatinate or the lands of the German Count Palatine  (the title held by successive secular princes of the Holy Roman Empire). The Palatinate extended from the Moselle River on the north, along the Rhine River and south to Alsace. This area was a prime agricultural area, bordered between Catholic France and the Protestant part of Germany and were subjected to many invasions.

The inhabitants of the Palatinate regions had endured much hardship and loss of property and substance to the various invading armies, and many were eager to move elsewhere.

According to George B. Cline, there are seven original North Carolina Cline families, and these seven families belong to four original immigrant families, which are: Andrew Klein of Pennsylvania,  Peter and Christopher Cline who are not related to any of the other Clines in North Carolina, and Moritz Klein.

From 38 ship passenger lists, there is documentation of 68 Klein names, one of which was the Phoenix on 15 Sep 1749, orgin was Zweybrecht, Nassau, Wirtenberg and Palatinate.  This list included Moritz Klein and Jacob Klein of Postroff.  Jacob, is likely the son of Moritz .

Early Pennsylvania records show only one Sebastian Klein through at least 1760, he immigrates in 1739 and signs the oath of allegiance list as Bastian Klein.  His European origin is Postorff, Alsace and lists his father as Moritz Klein and siblings, Michael and JacobThese three brothers migrate to North Carolina about 1747-1749. By 1830 almost 90% of the Cline families in North Carolina are descended from Moritz Klein.

On a 1995 trip to the Alsace region, George B. Cline, met Mr. Robert Muller of Hirschland who had spent many years researching.  He had recorded in his personal collection the genealogical data for all the families appearing in the early church and civil records of the region.

Mr. Muller has reconstructed the ancestral lineage of Mauritius (Moritz) Klein from the records for the the nearby town of Teinsall, which today is the old part of the town of Niederstinzel  (New Stinzel). Moritz Klein is the father of Sebastian, Michael and Jacob Klein who migrate to North Carolina.  All of Moritz's children are found in the Hirschland church records.

The ancestors of Moritz Klein lived in Steinsall, which is about three miles west of Hirschland. His great-grandfather was Pieter (Peter) Klein born about 1575-1580, who lived in Steinsall and had six children.

Land and church records document this family in Philadelphia/Berks county, Pennsylvania.  By 1752, the Sebastian (Boston) Cline/Klein, son of Moritz Klein, family arrived in Lincoln county (which later became Catawba county), North Carolina and is the earliest pioneer Cline family in this area.  His descendants have a Cline Renunion every two years, this is a link to their website

Early records reveal two pioneer Cline families living near each other in what would become Cabarrus county, formed from old Mecklenburg county.  One of these is our family line, the Jacob Cline family and the other is his brother the Michael Cline family.  Jacob witnesses Michael Cline's 1784 will. By clicking on the Jacob Cline link, you'll find many legal records for him. An interesting link with Michael & Jacob's names listed in Cabarrus county.

Some records for the Jacob Cline family are found in the southern Rowan county area just north of the Cabarrus county line.

It is not known exactly when Jacob Cline dies or how large his family is.  No will or estate records exist according to George B. Cline's research.  The census is of no help since neither he nor any of his probable sons appear in the 1790 or the 1800 census in Cabarrus county or elsewhere.  Their somewhat remote location near the Rowan county border may have caused them to be missed or perhaps the census was not thoroughly conducted in Cabarrus county in those years. 

It is believed that our heritage continues through Jacob's son, John Cline born about 1745-1750.  By clicking on John's link, you'll find much of George B. Cline's conclusion about John and his family.  John Cline dies in 1786, estate papers identify two minor sons, one of which is David Cline born 1777 (father of our George W. Cline).  This David marries Mary A. Conrad on March 9, 1806. He and his family migrate to western North Carolina and Georgia, as documented from census.  (The west counties of interest: Buncombe, Haywood, Macon, Caldwell, Cherokee, and Alexander were derived from Burke county.) By March of 1853, David is living in Tennessee.  He applies  for bounty land available to War of 1812 veterans.  In his application, he states he is a resident of Chilhowee, Blount county, Tennessee, that he is 76 years old and that he mustered in at Salisbury, North Carolina for six months service in the Creek Nation.

Our great grandfather, George W. (Washington) Cline was born about 1824 in Georgia or North Carolina. Census records are not consistent for his age or his place of birth.  He marries Narcissa/Nercisa Newton on 4 Feb 1852 in Haywood County, North Carolina. They continue to migrate back and forth from Georgia to North Carolina. Records indicate our grandfather, Robert L. (Bob) Cline was born in Georgia. The George W. & Narcissa Cline family migrate to central Texas sometime after the June 10, 1880 census was taken in Georgia.  According to family they lived/worked on the large farm in Steiner Valley,  Whitney, Hill County, Texas.  1889 Marriage records for Robert L. Cline and Ida Daniel are recorded at the Bosque County courthouse,  so we assumed they were living near there at that time.  George W. Cline dies in 1894, Narcissa comes to live with her daughter, Molly in East Texas by 1900.  The 1900 census finds Robert & Ida in Farmersville, Collin Co., Texas, and by 1910, they are found in Swan, Smith County, Texas. They continue living in the Smith County area until their death, except for the few years Robert lived with his daughter Irene in or near Woodlake, Texas.