Although listed here on clearfamily.org as the first child of Charles Clear and Emma Hill, evidence suggests that Sylvia ('Civil') Clear was NOT the biological daughter of Charles Clear, but rather a man named Frank Raker. This may also be true of her brother Hobert.
Sylvia's surname on vital records has variously been recorded as Hill, Clear, and Raker.
In the Isabella County, Michigan census of 1900, Sylvia is listed as 6 years old and living with Charles and Julia Bell Stewart - her aunt and uncle. In this census, Sylvia's surname is recorded as 'Hill', and not 'Clear'. Within the family, some say that Sylvia was given to her aunt and uncle because "her father wasn't good to her.” That said, Sylvia rejoins Charles and her mother Emma in the 1910 Paulding County, Ohio census, where she becomes 'Clear'. It is not known if she was legally adopted or if the Clear last name was just assumed. When she was about 17, Sylvia married Clarence Brincefield of Auglaize County, Ohio. Together they had at least six children, all daughters: Florence, Velma, Marguerite, Mary Helen, Violet and Evelyn. Velma and Evelyn both died in infancy.
In the March 16th, 1912 marriage certificate for Clarence Brincefield and Sylvia L. Raker, her parents are listed as Emma Hill and...Frank Raker, not Charles Clear. Information about Frank Raker is scarce. There was an Ohio-born Frank Raker who was listed as a single 29-year-old barber boarding in the William Gleason house in the town of Van Wert in 1900, although this individual doesn't appear in 4 subsequent censuses in any state - at least under 'Frank Raker'.
Sylvia's maiden name is represented as 'Silva Reaker' on at least three occasions: In 1912, on daughter Florence's birth certificate, in 1913 on daughter Velma's death certificate, and again in 1920 on daughter Evelyn's death certificate.
Tragically, Sylvia was killed in a car accident at the young age of 33. On her death certificate, her last name is listed as Brincefield, as she was still married at the time of her death. Oddly, her father's name is listed as Harrison Clear. Her mother Emma's father was named Harrison Hill, so this misinformation on Sylvia's death certificate must have come from her husband Clarence. This would not be the last time that a vital record pertaining to Sylvia would contain confusing or contradictory information. For example - years later, her daughter Florence listed her mother's name as 'Sylvia Clear' on her social security application. When Florence died, her death certificate lists her mother's name as 'Cevil Raker'. In this case, the informant was likely Florence's daughter Kay.
Sylvia Raker-Hill-Clear-Brincefield is buried in Middle Creek Cemetery.