A Genealogical Profile of Thomas Clark

It appears to me that there is a lot of mythology on this man.  At least I do not see it in the original records.  Let us begin with what http://www.plimoth.org/ has on line, as minimal truth!  I have added to this the Boston birth record of Joseph Clark.

The Great Migrations write up on him is probably factual, and I will fill that in here later.

Birth: Thomas Clark was born about 1599 in England. Death: He died on March 24, 1696/7, in Plymouth. He came over on the Ship: Anne or Little James, 1623.   

Life in England: Nothing is known of his life in England.  

Life in New England: Thomas Clark came over as a single man in 1623. He was a freeman of the colony by 1633. He served on a number of juries and committees, and was also chosen as constable for Eel River in Plymouth and surveyor of highways. He lived in Boston by 1660, although he returned to Plymouth by 1673.

We certainly may assume that during this period his son William was with him that that this birth record refers to him:

 
William Clarke and Anne Clarke had ​Joseph Clarke, of William and Anne Clarke, born 10th Sept. 1659 (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 69). 

Although he had no formal legal training, Thomas Clark acted as a lawyer on numerous occasions, both for himself and others.

His gravestone on Burial Hill is one of the few dating from the 17th century. Family:

Thomas Clark married (1) Susanna Ring before 1631 in Plymouth and had six children. She died sometime after 1646.

He married (2) Alice (Hallett) Nichols after January 20, 1664/5, in Boston. She died by July 25, 1671.

Children of Thomas and Susanna Clark:

  1. William Clark was born about 1634. He was approximately 26 during the time his father was residing in Boston ("in Boston by 1660, returning to Plymouth by 1673") when William Clark had Joseph Clark with Ann the mother: William Clarke and Anne Clarke had ​Joseph Clarke, of William and Anne Clarke, born 10th Sept. 1659 (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 69).  Perhaps Ann died in childbirth or shortly thereafter.  There is no marriage record, so Joseph Clark could be illegitimate, although the Boston Vital Record does not appear to so state. According to Plymouth accounts, William Clark married (1) Sarah Wolcott on March 1, 1659/60, and had two children. Sarah and a baby were killed in 1676 during King Philip's War. He married (2) Hannah Griswold on March 7, 1677/8, in (Plymouth records say Plymouth) Saybrook, Connecticut and four children. He married (3) Abiah Wilder on August 3, 1692, in Plymouth and had one child. He died before March 28, 1720.
    1. Joseph Clarke, of William and Anne Clarke, born 10th Sept. 1659 (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 69) and died in Braintree in 1708.  This is the line of FOC.
    2. Child by Sarah Wolcott whom he married March 1, 1659/60
    3. Child by Sarah Wolcott one of these children was killed in King Philip's War in 1676.
    4. Child by Abiah Wilder whom he married 3 August 1672. (yes, I can see that these dates don't make sense)
    5. Child by Hannah Griswold whom he married on 7 March 1677/8.
    6. Child by Hannah Griswold
    7. Child by Hannah Griswold
    8. Child by Hannah Griswold
  2. James Clark was born about 1636. He married Abigail Lothrop on October 7, 1657, in Plymouth and had seven children. He died in Plymouth before October 4, 1731, when his will was probated.  FOC has a DNA match here via Paul Lee, P_Lee45 on Ancestry.com.
  3. Susanna Clark was born about 1638. She married Barnabas Lothrop in 1658 and had nine children. She died on September 28, 1697.
  4. John Clark was born about 1640. He married Sarah Smith by 1668 and had eight children. He died in Lyme, Connecticut in March 1719.  FOC has DNA match here via "reedfinder" on Ancestry.com.
  5. Nathaniel Clark was born about 1642. He married Dorothy (Lettice) Grey about 1685 in Plymouth. He died in Plymouth on January 31, 1717/8.
  6. Andrew Clark was born about 1646. He married Mehitable Scotto by 1672 in Boston and had six children. He died in Harwich in 1706.  FOC has DNA match here via "Burgan_Janice" on Ancestry.com.

For Further Information:

Robert C. Anderson. The Great Migration Begins. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1995.

Robert C. Anderson. The Pilgrim Migration. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2004.

Arthur H. and Katherine Radasch. The Thomas Clark Family. South Yarmouth, Mass.: Privately printed, 1973.

Eugene A. Stratton. Plymouth Colony: Its History and People, 1620-1691. Salt Lake City:Ancestry Publishing, 1986.

A collaboration between PLIMOTH PLANTATION and the NEW ENGLAND HISTORIC GENEALOGICAL SOCIETYŽ www.PlymouthAncestors.org

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The rest is more conjectural.


Thomas Clarke, Sr. of Plymouth, born c1599, died 24 March 1697, aged 98 (97) years, came over in the Anne in 1623 age 23 years (also stated "supposed mate of the Mayflower," in the History of Town of Duxbury).  Married  1st Susanna Ring, daughter of widow Mary Ring, before 1631. (From "Cape Code Library of Genealogy and Local History," "A Facsimile Edition of 108 Pamphlets Published in the Early 20th Century," Volume I. Family Tree Maker, Family Archives, Family History, Massachusetts & Maine Genealogies 1650s-1930s.)(Vital Records of Plymouth)  He married 2nd probably widow Alice Nichols of Boston, 1664, daughter of Richard Hallet (History of Duxbury p246, 247).  Is this a second Thomas Clark, or is this also the  same Thomas Clark listed in Duxbury??  Children: (Andrew, William, James, Nathaniel, John) (History of Duxbury p247 lists children as: Wm., James, Nathaniel, Andrew, & Susanna)

  1. Andrew Clarke (born c<1635) died 1706, living in Boston before 1676, married Mehitable Scottow, baptised 1649. Removed to Satucket (western Brewster) c1676, many children removed to Harwich.
    1. Thomas Clark born 1672 (Lt. Thomas), of Plymouth
    2. Susanna Clark born 1674 married John Gray
    3. Andrew Clark (alive 1693) married Elizabeth Winslow 1711
    4. Scotto or Scottoway Clark of Plymouth, m. Mary
    5. Nathaniel Clark married Abigail Hedge 1720
    6. Mehitable Clark b 1676 Boston, m. John Haskel 1705.
  2. William Clark (alive 1693, could have been born as early as 1631), left 18d by the William Clark of Duxbury in 1687 (History of the Town of Duxbury,  MA, with genealogical registers, Justin Winsor, 1849. ) Did he reside in Boston 1659-1663?  William Clarke now resident in Boston & Martha Farr daughter of George Farr of Lynne were married 18th Sept. 1661 by Mr. Richard Russell (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 82).  Two children in the Boston records: Joseph Clarke, of William and Anne Clarke, born 10th Sept. 1659 (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 69) and Samuel Clarke of William & Martha Clarke born 28 June 1663 (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 88)
    1. James Clark (alive 1693)
    2. John Clark (alive 1693).  A John Clark is stated as a grandson of old Thomas Clark of Plymouth in the History of Duxbury, but did not state grandsom of which Clark.)  John Clark of Barnstable, married Mary Benjamin 16 Aug. 1695, died at Plymouth 1712.
      1. John Clark 16 Nov. 1697
      2. Joseph Clark
      3. Isaac Clark who went to "Hardwich" (History of the Town of Duxbury,  MA, p247)
      4. James Clark
    3. Andrew Clark (alive 1693)
    4. Joseph Clarke, of William and Anne Clarke, born 10th Sept. 1659 (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 69) Is this Joseph Clark born <1657 who died in Braintree in 1708? (not listed in Plymouth records, only Boston)
    5. Samuel Clarke of William & Martha Clarke born 28 June 1663 (VR Boston Vol 9 Page 88) (not listed in Plymouth records, only Boston)
  3. James Clark (born <c 1636, alive 1693) married Abigail Lothrop 7 Oct. 1657
    1. James Clark born <c1702
  4. Nathaniel Clark (alive 1693), "the secretary."
  5. Susanna Clark married Barnabas Lathrop 13 Nov. 1658. (History of the Town of Duxbury,  MA, with genealogical registers, Justin Winsor, 1849.

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Copyright ©1999, Dr. Frank Oliver Clark. These documents may be freely used for private purposes, and included in your own genealogy.  However, this document is copyrighted and may not be sold, nor given to anyone who may attempt to derive profit from same. Please send any errors, corrections, conjectures, updates, etc. to Dr. Frank O. Clark.