Reuben Gesler Clark biography

REUBEN GESLER CLARK. When the Red River Cattle Company’s ranch was being parceled out to actual settlers Reuben G. Clark became one of the early purchasers and the three hundred and twenty-six acres which constitutes his home, and is so well and substantially improved, was but a wild and forbidding tract whose grassy sward was relieved only by clusters of the scrubby oak. This spot of ground was embraced within the Peters Colony land, and is situated four miles south of Bellevue, in Clay county, and upon it Mr. Clark has made his home since the month of August, 1884.

As a citizen of this new county, among the first acts of Mr. Clark was the building of his castle—for it has been decided that every man&39;s home is his castle—and a shanty twelve by sixteen feet, with two rooms, rose up to answer the purpose. Being yet single and unmarried, his new house became no more than a bachelor’s quarters for a few months, but when Mrs. Clark became its mistress it served, with its piece-meal enlargements, until the final remodeling and the erection of the roomy home which domiciles its worthy owners now. One piece of farm improvement followed another, as the prosperity of the owner would admit, until there is nothing left to be done save enjoy the simple emoluments that follow in the wake of intelligent and honest toil.

In February, 1878, Reuben G. Clark became a Texas settler. He located in Collin county, and while there his vocation was that of master of a district school. He has prepared himself for his mi-life work in his native state of Illinois, and had spent a full seven years’ period of successful school work there; and he taught seven years in the schools of Collin county, Texas. He was born eight miles north of Charleston, in Coles county, July 13, 1851, and came to maturity on the farm. Ambitious to acquire more than an ordinary education, he became able to teach and this vocation supplied him with the means to procure a higher mental equipment. He first attended Westfield College in Clarke county, Illinois, then Lee’s Academy, Coles county, and finally he entered the National Normal University at Lebanon, Ohio, where he graduated with the class of 1874. He joined the profession of teaching regularly then and remained with it until his voluntary retirement to became a farmer in 1884.

Mr. Clark is a son of William H. Clark, born at Maysville, Kentucky, in 1823, and at three years of age was taken into Coles county, Illinois, by his father, Benjamin F. Clark. The father and grandfather were farms, and the latter died in Coles county in 1853 at sixty-five. He married Sarah Hammond and their children were: Benjamin, Lewis, William H., Andrew J., Malinda, wife of John Rardin; Lucinda, who married Frank Daugherty, and Phebe, who became the wife of Wesley Daugherty. The youngest daughter, Paulina, married John Galbraith.

William H. Clark, father of our subject, was a citizen of Coles county, Illinois, until 1874, when he migrated to Kansas and settled at Toledo, remaining in the Sunflower state till 1892, when he, accompanied by his wife and four younger children, located in Johnson county, Missouri, where they now reside. Julia Ann Rardin became Mrs. William H. Clark in 1850. She was a daughter of Samuel Rardin, a Kentucky settler to Illinois, and the issue of her union with Mr. Clark were: Reuben G., Eliza J., wife of Andrew J. Campbell of Neosho Falls, Kansas; Dumas V., of Coles county, Illinois; Harriet, wife of Thomas Carter, of Coles county, Illinois; Andrew D., of Mattoon, Illinois; John G., of Johnson county, Missouri; Sarah, wife of Frank Barnes, of Johnson county, Missouri; Nancy, who married Henry Blanchard, of Gotobo, Oklahoma, and Susan, unmarried and at the parental fireside.

Rueben G. Clark was united in marriage in Collin county, Texas, with Minerva J. Reeves, March 1, 1885. Mrs. Clarks’ parents were J. N. Reeves and Miss Ellen J. Martin, the father a Kentuckian and the mother also a native of Kentucky. Of their various meanderings we will mention southern Illinois, Blanco county, and finally Collin county, Texas. Mrs. Clark is the oldest of six children, the others being: William T., Howard, Martha, wife of M. T. Hilbin; Josiah and Mary, wife of Joseph J. Cato.

Mr. and Mrs. Clark’s children are: William Nelson and Lillie May. The Clarks of this family are all Democrats and Mr. Clark served his township in Illinois as its clerk. He and his wife are Methodists and they have reared their children to know and do the right.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. II, pp. 105-106.