clay root n chiefly Sth, Lower Missip Valley
A mass of roots and earth at the end of an uprooted tree and hole left behind.
[1786 in 1804 NC Pub. Acts Genl. Assembly 1.424, All that part of the county of Craven, included in the following bounds, beginning at the Pitt line where Creeping swamp intersects the same, thence down the run or middle of the said swamp to the run or middle of the Clay-Root swamp, . . is hereby annexed to . . the county of Pitt.] 1851 Edgefield Advt. (SC) 31 July /1, “Yes,” returned he with a sneer, “and what other things [=agricultural products of the piney woods area] are those you pretend to be too lazy to mention? Gooseberries, fox-squirrels and clay-roots, by Hokey. Ha! ha! ha!” 1857 Ibid 1 July /2 (as of 1782), Vardell . . made an appeal to his comrades not to allow him to fall in the hands of his enemies, and a time was taken . . to bury him under a clay root. 1878 Troy Messenger (AL) 6 June /3, He was shot by some party concealed behind a large clay-root, which stood some ten or twelve steps from the road. 1903 Alexandria Daily Town Talk (Alexandria–Pineville LA) 15 Dec 6/2, He was crossing Spring creek on log. The log had blown up by the roots leaving a clay root at the end. In getting over this the boy, it seems, pitched the gun to the bank and in in [sic] some manner it fired. 1921 Dispatch (Lexington NC) 18 Mar 5/1, Sheriff’s officers . . captured about six gallons of corn whiskey in an old clay root in the woods. 1945 Saxon Gumbo Ya-Ya 562 LA, Clay root: the exposed roots of a tree which has been blown out in such a way that a large hole is left where the tree was standing. 1952 Brown NC Folkl. 1.527 c, eNC, Clay-root. . . An uprooted tree. 1966 PADS 46.25 cnAR, Clay root. . . An uprooted tree that has fallen or blown over, leaving a large hole in the ground where it grew. 1991 Leaf–Chronicle (Clarksville TN) 31 May sec B 8/1, Tract No. 1: Beginning on a large white oak near the spring runs thence north 3 deg. E 70 poles to a beech, now clay root. 2010 in 2019 DARE File—Internet eTX, Bout 15 min. later they had this mean boar hog bayed in switch cane thicket under a clay root. 2011 Ibid swAR, [Video clip caption:] RR Hog Dogs bayed in a clay-root on a good spotted boar!