Thursday, November 15, 2018

1115 Case #28: Donald Clarke



(by Student #28 AMH 2010 1115)

            In this casefile, the convicted no. 7959 is imprisoned for giving liquor to a minor. Donald Clarke was received in Santa Fe, New Mexico on June 1st, 1934. His sentence would be one to five years since his plea at trail was found guilty. I started looking for interesting faces in the casefile files. His file caught my eye because it did not look like he would commit a crime that would involve a lot of physical actions, such as manslaughter. Especially because he was described as heavy build and was a 38-year-old single male. His occupation was a teacher, which could mean that he is good with children and seem kind, or he looked for a way of power over someone. Since he is single and has no children he might became a teacher to avoid having to use childcare or starting a family. His background might be dull and common, but since he was born in Rome, Italy I am curious to find out how his life ended up in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
            Finding an interesting casefile was the first step I took before starting the research. Once I found the file of Donald Clarke I tried to search files on ancestory.com to place this person into a family and background context. I did get stuck on finding relatives since the only states relative was Dr. Robert O. Brown. This relative could be a connection on why Donald Clarke was living in Italy, but does not explain on why he was born there. Furthermore, I tried to look up context of illegal liquor use in New Mexico and reasons on why someone would leave Italy to come to the United States in that period of time.
            To start with his background, he was born in Rome, Italy in Europe. On his description of convict, it shows that Clarke has been in the United States for twenty years. This means that he arrived in the United States around 1914. Since it is shown that he was thirty-eight while being convicted in 1934, he would be born in the year of 1896 and would have been around the age of eighteen when arriving in the United States. Though he was born in Italy, his conviction said that his nationality was American. His mother was born in New Jersey while his father was born in New York, but on his statement of convict states that his parents were not alive. It states that his relative Dr. Robert O. Brown lived in Santa Fe, New Mexico, though the New York State Census of 1915 shows a likewise relative that was born in Italy. This could lead to a connection of Donald Clarke living in Italy with this relative.
            The reason for Donald Clarke to move to the United States is unknown, though the idea of immigrating during this period of time was attractive since the wages in America were higher. Another reason might have been to go back to his family and start a new family in the United States since his parents were born in there. His nationality was still American, even though he was born in Italy and has been there for about eighteen years of his life. Since he had spent his younger years in Italy, I wonder if he spoke fluent Italian and English. Also, I am curious what his focus of education was as a teacher.
            For his crime, giving liquor to a minor, the state of New Mexico has its own law and reputation on alcohol consumption. The state of New Mexico suffers from a reputation of severe alcohol abuse, according to the New Mexico Department of Public Safety. Article 7B of Chapter 60 goes into detail about the regulation of sales and service to a minor. A minor in this case means a person under the age of twenty-one. Giving liquor to a minor is a violation of the Liquor Control Act. Though it does not show on how the minor ended up like, for instance, he might have died of alcohol poisoning or other accidents, his sentence was one to five years. Donald Clarke did drink and smoke according to his statement of convict, this would explain why he served liquor to a minor. Though, Donald Clarke has no other previous conviction nor has been in other prisons.
Teacher Donald Clarke, born in Rome, Italy, was received in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1934 for giving liquor to a minor. Though he is born in Italy, his conviction said that his nationality is American and shows that Clarke has been in the United States for twenty years. The New York State Census of 1915 displays that his relative Dr. Robert O. Brown that lived in Santa Fe, New Mexico was born in Italy. This might have been a reason of Donald Clarke living with his relative Dr. Robert O. Brown in Italy, but does not provide evidence on why he lived in Italy while being an American as his stated nationality.