THOMAS ALLEN CLARK, M. D.,
is the type of physician that is, unfortunately for the country at large, rapidly becoming more and more rare in the active life of this twentieth century. He has been willing to devote the years since his graduation to the relief of the suffering close about him without marring his usefulness by dreams of the city operating room or of the specialist's fee. Of him Goldsmith might have said: “A man he was to all the country dear—“ and even further,—
This doctor, who willingly gives of his skill and energy to soothe his fellow men in their illness and affliction travels through the Southern Illinois country by horse, visiting patients often fifteen or twenty miles distant from his home, such is the confidence of the people in his ability.
Thomas Allen Clark was born on the 21st day of April, 1874, on a farm in Farmington township, Jefferson county, Illinois. He is the son of Joseph Clark, who began his life in Nashville, Tennessee, in October of 1831. The senior Mr. Clark had grown to young manhood in Tennessee when the war cloud grew black and his father, Jesse, always a loyal Unionist, brought his little family from the south to Jefferson county, Illinois. On the Illinois farm purchased by his father Joseph Clark spent the remainder of his life and here he passed away on the 28th day of October, 1904, having just celebrated his seventy-third birthday. He left to mourn his death his wife, Sarah Smith Clark, the daughter of Mr. Coleman Smith, a Virginia gentleman, and seven grown children, of whom five are daughters. The first born, Florence, who finished her life work
some years since, was the widow of Doctor S. H. Hilliard, who has been deceased for eighteen years. The next sister, Cassie, married Horace Maxey, of Eldorado, Kansas. Edith is now Mrs. Doctor A. G. Brown, of St. Louis. Love of the medical profession seems to be a family trait. Cora, next to the youngest of the girls, also married a physician, in this case Doctor J. T. Whillock, of Mount Vernon, Illinois. Lillie, who married J. Will Howell, still lives in the home city, while Walter Clark, the older of the boys, occupies the home farm.
Dr. Thomas A. Clark attended, in his childhood, the district schools of Jefferson county, graduating later from the Mount Vernon high school. For the ensuing year he studied at Fairfield College, then for one year at Ewing College. Feeling the necessity of becoming at once self supporting, he left his college work unfinished that he might enter the normal school at Oakland, Indiana, and in his twentieth year began teaching in the schools of his native county. During five years of life as a teacher he was able to save from his earnings enough to help him to realize his boyhood ambition—a medical education, At the age of twenty-six he entered the medical department of the University of St. Louis, receiving his degree of Doctor of Medicine in the spring of 1904.
Upon graduation he settled in Dix, Illinois, where his large general practice covers a territory from fifteen to twenty miles in radius. His' nights as well as his days are given over to his profession, so popular has he become with the people of his vicinity, In the autumn of 1907 he was elected county coroner on the Democratic ticket. This office he has filled with such ability that his friends of both political parties are anxious that he continue to accept the responsibilities. He is a member of the Jefferson County Medical Society and the Illinois State Medical Association. In lodge circles he belongs to the Knights of 'Pythias and to the Woodmen of the World.
One year previous to his entering medical school the doctor was united in marriage to Miss Dora May Smith, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Nelson Smith, of Jefferson county. They were married on the 30th of November, 1889, his bride going with him to St. Louis—there to make a home for him while his hopes were becoming realities. Dr. and Mrs. Clark are now the parents of two attractive little daughters: Doris Alene is seven years of age, while the baby sister celebrated her third birthday on the 30th of October, 1911.