One of the substantial citizens of Marion township, Jasper county, is Monroe Clark, who is also a highly respected
business man. His birth occurred in Madison county, Arkansas, March 20, 1832, and he was a son of Thomas Clark,
who was born in the state of Tennessee about twenty five miles from Nashville. In 1855 he removed to Barry county,
Missouri, where he died at the age of seventy six. His ancestry was a combination of Irish. Dutch and English.
The mother of Monroe Clark was in her maidenhood Nancy Combs. She was a member of the old family of that name,
well known throughout Tennessee, and she lived until she had reached her seventy sixth year. Twelve children were
born to these parents, and all grew to maturity and are living. They have scattered and founded families of their
own in different parts of the Union.
Monroe Clark was the eldest son of his parents, and he was reared in Madison county, Arkansas, where he remained
until he had nearly reached his twenty first year. In 1865, immediately after the close of the Civil war, he went
to Newton county, Missouri, and began mining, and in 1871 he came to Joplin, at which time but one house had been
erected in what is now a thriving city. Mr. Clark hauled the first pump that was set up in Joplin, bringing it
from Oronogo. In connection with William Beaves he kept house for a time in a wagon. Those were busy days, and
Mr. Clark worked industriously as a common miner, following this laborious task from 1871 until 1893. He was resolute,
courageous, persevering, and, therefore, successful.
In 1893 he bought his farm of five hundred and seven acres, and removed to it in 1895, and since that date has
carried on general farming, in connection with duties pertaining to various other business lines. This farm is
called the Town Line Stock Farm, and he has two residences upon it, near the center of the property, with all kinds
of valuable improvements, including commodious barns. He has taken an active interest in politics and was one of
the first councilmen in Joplin, holding the office for eight years, and through his efforts many of the most important
improvements in this section were organized and carried out. He built the first hotel in Joplin, named it the St.
James, and rented it.
Mr. Clark was one of the pioneer miners, and has had much experience in handling mining property. He was one of
the syndicate that opened the Tracy mining tract of four hundred and forty acres at Webb City, and was superintendent
of the same for eight years and owned one fifth of the lease. The last year of the company's operations they paid
ten per cent royalty, which amounted to thirty thousand dollars. His partners were Dr. L. C. Price, J. A. Hewitt,
W. M. Lackey and E. R. Moffett, and with him, composed the company that opened up that large and productive mining
property and operated it for nine years.
Mr. Clark also had mercantile experience. In connection with W. E. Johnson he embarked in the mercantile business
in Joplin, and continued for two years, later trading this business for a coal mine, although he does very little
mining now, giving his attention principally to farming. He owns considerable property in Webb City, which he rents
and which produces a good income.
Mr. Clark was married, December 25, 1852, to Elizabeth Newton, who was born near Batesville, Arkansas, but was
early left an orphan. To Mr. and Mrs. Clark these children were born: Nancy Jane, who is the wife of Virgil Board,
of Joplin; Alabama, who is the wife of John F. Wise, of Joplin; Amanda, who married W. A. Dooley, but both have
passed away; Mary Ellen, who is the wife of J. W. Colvin, of Joplin; Alonzo, who married Miss Shannon, of Joplin;
and an infant that died. One of the members of the family of Mr. Clark is his grandson, Frank Dooley, who lost
his parents when a babe. He is a resident of Joplin, and married Miss Maud Sims.
The success which has attended Mr. Clark is but the natural result which follows energy, industry and ability.
He has been one of the important factors in the industrial and social growth of Joplin, and, although widely known,
the esteem in which he is held by his fellow citizens extends as far.
The Biographical History of Jasper County, Missouri
By Hon. Malcolm G. McGregor
The Lewis Publishing Co.
Jasper County, MO
For all your genealogy needs visit Linkpendium