Saute bacon in a dutch oven until crisp; pour off pan drippings, set aside.
Drain clams, reserving juice; set clams aside. Add clam juice, celery, onion, and potatoes to a Dutch oven add water if needed just to barely cover vegetables. Bring to just to a boil, cover and reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
Combine flour and half & half; stir until flour is dissolved. Add half & half mixture, clams, hot sauce, salt and white pepper, bacon and green onion to soup mixture.
Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thoroughly heated and thickened.
Sprinkle each serving with paprika and garnish with cheddar cheese and oyster crackers if desired.