Biography of Peltiah J. Clark
Erie County, OH Biographies





PELTIAH J. CLARK. It is a grateful distinction to have spent more than three quarters of a century in one community, and when those years have been filled with worthy accomplishments and with that old fashioned spirit of loving kindness, such a career becomes one deserving of admiration and worthy of perpetuation in any history of a county in which it has been spent. Peltiah J. Clark, who is now living partially retired on his half urban and half rural home at Berlin Heights, is one of the oldest native sons of Erie County, where his career has been as honorable in all its relations as it has been prolonged.

Peltiah J. Clark was born not far from Ceylon Junction at Harper's Corners in Berlin Township, April 25, 1837, a son of John and Asenath (Kemp) Clark. Both his parents were barn in the State of Vermont, his father at Rutland in 1802, and his mother in 1812. His mother was a daughter of Moses Kemp. The latter and his wife came to Ohio at the same time as the Clark family and lived and died as farmers in Berlin Township, and were laid to rest in Peek's Cemetery. Moses Kemp died in 1842 and his wife a little later. He was a whig in politics.

John Clark and wife were married in Vermont, and while there their daughter Mary was born. About 1835-36 they came to Ohio, making the trip as far as Buffalo by the Erie Canal, and thence by boat to Huron. They located on Old Woman's Creek in Berlin Township, near the community known as Harper's Corners. There in the midst of the woods they built a log cabin, and with Indians as neighbors and wild game in abundance to supply their larder, they lived for several years the primitive existence of pioneer people. John Clark died there April 20, 1849, and his wife passed away on the 20th of May in the same year. They were laid to rest side by side in Peek's Cemetery. Their daughter Mary, who was born in Vermont, died soon after the family came to this county. The daughter Joanna went West after her marriage, and the last information concerning her was from South Dakota. Henry G. is a bachelor and now lives in Toledo and is eighty years of age. The next in order of age is Peltiah J. Daniel died in Berlin Township at the age of sixteen and Miles died at the age of fourteen. Lucy died after her marriage to Harrison McDonnell, and the latter and their only daughter Millie now live in Huron County.

After the death of his parents Peltiah J. Clark, who was then twelve years of age, went to the home of Amos Hine. Mr Hine died four years later, but he continued to live with his wife Polly Hine until twenty one years of age. In the meantime he had received the instruction afforded by the local school, and may be said to have started his independent career with nothing except the associations of an honored family name, and with good mental and physical qualifications for a life that must succeed through independent efforts. For three years he was a renter, and in the meantime had married, and then bought seventy two acres on the shore of Lake Erie along what is now the Market Street road in Berlin Township, not far from Ceylon Junction. Mr. Clark in that location began the career of steady prosperity which has continued down to the present time. He improved his land with excellent farm buildings, and continued to reside there until the spring of 1895. In that year he moved to Berlin Heights, and in 1896 bought twenty two acres of land, fourteen of which were within the corporation limits and eight just outside. This home is now marked by an attractive dwelling house, many improvements, well cultivated fields, and an excellent orchard.

On November 25, 1860, Mr. Clark was married near Shinrock, in Berlin Township, to Miss Helen M. Hendrickson, who was born in Berlin Township October 20, 1842. With the exception of nine years during which time her parents lived in Sullivan County, New York, she spent practically all her life in Erie County. Her parents were Jacob and Elizabeth (Schooinaker) Hendrickson, the former born in Ulster County New York, in 1811, and the latter in Sullivan Cemetery in 1813. They were married in Sullivan County in 1833, and started housekeeping on a farm in that community While living there their first child, Benjamin Hendrickson, was born in 1834. In 1835 the Hendrickson family set out for Northern Ohio, making the trip by canal as far as Buffalo and thence by boat to Huron. Jacob Hendrickson lived for a time on rented land, and in 1846 the family returned to New York State, making the journey with covered wagons and teams. After they returned to Sullivan County, New York, four children were born, but all of them died in infancy. In the early part of 1856 they all came back to Erie County, and Jacob Hendrickson died in Berlin Township in 1876 and his widow in 1896. Of their children the only two living are Mrs. Clark and her brother, Michael Hendrickson, whose home is in Berlin Township, and who was the father of ten children, one of them deceased and eight of them married.

Mr. and Mrs. Clark became the parents of two children. Gertrude is the wife of Dr. George W. Hine, a sketch of whom will be found on other pages. Herman P., who was born in 1876, now occupies the farm which was his birthplace and which belonged to his father on the shore of Lake Erie. Herman Clark married Maud Jeffries of Berlin Township, and both were schoolmates in the Berlin High School. Mr. and Mrs. Clark have membership in no church, but in their relations as neighbors have found and accepted many opportunities for practical charity and for doing good according to the golden rule. Mr. Clark is a republican.

From:
A Standard History of Erie County, Ohio
By: Hewson L. Peeke
Assisted by a Board of Advisory Editors
The Lewis Publishing Company Chicago and New York 1916


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