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Below is a family biography included in The History of Polk County, Missouri published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1889.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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David S. Clark. Prominent among the enterprising citizens of the county, and among those deserving special recognition for their long residence in the county, stands the name of the above mentioned gentleman, who was born in Washington County, Tenn., December 26, 1824, being the son of William C. and Margaret (Moore) Clark. The father was born in Washington County, Tenn., in 1776, and is said to have been the first white child born this side of the Alleghany Mountains. The mother was born in South Carolina in 1785. After marriage they settled in Washington County, Tenn., where they remained until 1833, and then came to Polk County, Mo., settling four miles southwest of Bolivar. Here the father died in 1845, and the mother in 1853. Both were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. The father was quite fond of hunting, both in Tennessee and after coming to Missouri, where he and his sons killed the last bear seen in that section. He was one of the most extensive farmers of his day, and was the owner of extensive tracts of land. In politics he was a Whig until that party went down, and he then became a Democrat. He was the father of fourteen children, eight sons and six daughters, and the twelfth child was David S. Clark. He spent his boyhood days in assisting on the farm, and received the ordinary education to be had in the common country school; however it might be said that his education was rather above the average country boy. At the age of twenty he began for himself by farming, which has been his principal occupation during life, although he also ran a saw mill for about four years in Douglas County. September 10, 1846, he married Miss Ophelia C. Campbell, a native of Maury County, Tenn., born July 27, 1828, and the daughter of Ezekiel M. Campbell. Six children were born to this union: William M., Rebecca P., Annie O., John P., David S., Jr., and Katie. After marriage, Mr. Clark settled in Cedar County, but in 1850 went to the State of California, where he remained two and a half years, mining most of the time, and meeting with fair success. He rode a mule back, and was sixty-seven days making the trip.. He located on the place where he now lives, and there remained until the breaking out of the war, when he enlisted in Company E, of Shelby’s brigade, and was about three years in the Confederate service. He was never wounded nor taken prisoner. While he was in the army his house was burned, and his wife and children left homeless. Mrs. Clark and the children moved to Cooper County, then to Howard County, where they were joined by Mr. Clark at the close of the war. They then moved to Morgan County, made their home there until 1873, when they returned to their old home, in Polk County, and there they have since resided. Mr. Clark owns 360 acres of land, and his wife owns 320 acres, besides town property. Mrs. Clark is a member of the Missionary Baptist Church. Mr. Clark is ac counted one of the most successful farmers of his community, and one highly respected by all who know him. He is a Democrat in politics.

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This family biography is one of 132 biographies included in The History of Polk County, Missouri published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Polk County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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