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Madera Biographies: CLARK

Angus Marion Clark

     A. M. Clark, one of the early pioneers of California, was born in Madison County, Mississippi, in 1831. He was educated in the private schools of that period, which were held in log cabins, and lived on the farm with his parents until he was nineteen years old.

     In January, 1850, Mr. Clark started for California, crossing Mexico to Mazatlan and thence by water to San Francisco, where he arrived in May of that year. He then went to Nevada City to join his father. who came West in 1849. For sixteen years he followed mining continuously, always with paying results, but never striking a bonanza claim. He came to Fresno County in 1867 and was engaged at the copper mine, at Buchanan [present Madera County], for about six years.

     In 1873, Mr. Clark was elected County Clerk and Recorder of Fresno County, assuming the duties of the office in March, 1874, at Millerton, which was then the county seat. In the fall of 1874 he moved the records to Fresno, and in September of the same year assisted in laying the corner stone of the new courthouse. In the interim his office was located in a cheap structure on the courthouse grounds. Mr. Clark held the office of County Clerk and Recorder for eleven years. By 1884 the business of the office had increased so much that it was deemed best to separate the work of the clerk and recorder, and he retired. In 1885 he was elected to the Legislature, and since the expiration of his term of office he has devoted himself to his private business, saying he has no further political aspirations.

     Mr. Clark formed a partnership with W H. McKenzie in abstract business, and since 1878 they have carried on an extensive business, using the Durfee system of abstracts. In 1884 Messrs. Clark & McKenzie bought a controlling interest in the Fresno Loan and Savings Bank. The capital stock, then $20,000, has been increased to to $300,000, all paid up, and this bank now represents one of the leading institutions of its kind in the city. All through these years Mr. Clark has continued his mining interests, now being a member of the Harron Gold Mining Company, the stock of which is all owned by Messrs. Clark, McKenzie & Hoxie. Their mine is located in the foothills, near the old county seat. They have recently erected a Huntingdon rotary mill with rock breakers, concentrators, and the latest improved machinery, capacity of the same being equal to a ten-stamp mill. The quartz ranges from $25 to $30 a ton.

     Mr. Clark was a member of the Board of School Trustees during 1886 and 1887. In 1887 he was elected a member of the Board of City Trustees, which office he resigned in 1889, to make a trip East. In addition to his interests already referred to, he has a ranch and city property. Mr. Clark is a prominent Knight Templar, at this writing being Eminent Commander of the Fresno Commandery, No. 29.

     In Sacramento, in 1865, he was married to Miss Emma Gliddon, who died in Fresno, in 1880. His present wife he wedded in Fresno, December 25, 1882. She was Miss Sadie Bernis, a native of Massachusetts. Mr. Clark is the father of four children, two sons and two daughters.

-----, A Memorial and Biographical History of the Counties of Fresno, Tulare and Kern, California, (Chicagp: Lewis, 1892), page 329.

Last update: September 27, 2000
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