James Osgood Andrew Clark papers, 1807-1945

Emory University

Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library

Atlanta, GA 30322


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Descriptive Summary

Creator: Clark, James Osgood Andrew, 1827-1894.
Title: James Osgood Andrew Clark papers, 1807-1945
Call Number:Manuscript Collection No. 19
Extent: 3.75 linear ft. (9 boxes)
Abstract:Papers of James Osgood Andrew Clark, Methodist clergyman and educator.
Language:Materials entirely in English.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on access

Unrestricted access.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.


Purchase, 1945.


[after identification of item(s)], James Osgood Andrew Clark papers, Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library, Emory University.


Processed by VJH, November 14, 1977.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

James Osgood Andrew Clark (October 6, 1827 September 4, 1894), Methodist clergyman and educator, was born in Savannah, Georgia. His parents, Josiah Hayden Clark and Henrietta Gindrat Clark, had moved to Savannah from New England in 1812. Osgood Clark was apparently one of five children; an older brother was Richard H. Clark who later became a judge of the Stone Mountain, Georgia circuit.

Osgood Clark was educated at the Boston Latin School, Phillips Academy (Andover, Massachusetts), Andover College and Brown University. He returned to Savannah to enter law practice and was admitted to the bar during the court's January term in Chatham County in 1853.

In that same year, Osgood Clark believed that he had received a call to preach. He was ordained at the Quarterly Conference of the Savannah Station Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South on July 4, 1854. In 1856, he was made a deacon of the church, and in 1858, he was named a church elder.

In 1855, Osgood Clark married Amanda Mann of Augusta. They had one daughter, Nettie (Mrs. Frank W. Capers, Sr.), and Amanda apparently died fairly soon after the child's birth. Left alone with his young daughter, Clark spent the years 1863 and 1864 acting as the financial agent for Emory College at Oxford, Georgia.

On December 12, 1865, Osgood Clark married Ella Anderson of Burke County, Georgia. She was born on January 26, 1845 near Waynesboro, the daughter of James Anderson and Melvina Kinloch Anderson of Scotch-Irish descent. Ella had been educated at the Brothersville Academy and at the Lucy Cobb Institute in Athens, and, in 1862, she graduated from Wesleyan Female College in Macon, Georgia. Osgood and Ella had four children: Lella A. Clark, who was to be a student and faculty member at Andrew Female College in Cuthbert, Georgia, Osgood Clark, Anderson Clark, and Ruth McGregor Clark.

Clark served the church in pastorates in Augusta, Thomaston, Washington, Athens, Sandersville, Columbus, and Americus. In 1867, he was named professor of Latin language and literature at Emory College; he served in this capacity until 1871. In 1871, the University of Georgia awarded Osgood Clark an honorary D.D. degree, and in 1874, Emory College followed by awarding him an honorary LL.D. degree.

Osgood Clark and his family settled permanently in Macon in 1875. From that time until his death in 1894, Clark served as presiding elder of the South Georgia Conference for all but two years.

Also in 1875, Alexander M. Wynn, a Methodist clergyman in Savannah, conceived the idea of building a monument to John Wesley in that Georgia city, the only place in America where the founder of Methodism actually lived and had a parish. Hoping that this plan would help to unite worldwide Methodism, Osgood Clark became general agent for the project. In 1878 and 1879, he undertook fundraising tours in the United States and the British Isles to finance the proposed Wesley Monumental Methodist Church. He also began work on the Wesley Memorial Volume which was to be a collection of essays by prominent church, political, and lay leaders about John Wesley and Methodism; the proceeds from the sale of this book were to benefit the Savannah project.

The Wesley Memorial Volume was published in 1881. In that same year, Clark returned to England serving as a delegate to the Ecumenical Methodist Conference and seeking more aid for the building of the Wesley Monumental Methodist Church.

Clark and his wife remained active in their home church. Ella was a charter member and nine-term president of the Mulberry Street Methodist Church Woman's Missionary Society, the first missionary society organized within the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. She was an early promoter of the Young Women's Christian Association; served as secretary of the church Extension Board while Osgood Clark served as president; both were members of many other church and mission societies. Clark also served as a trustee of Wesleyan Female College in Macon.

Osgood Clark continued to work and speak in behalf of the Methodist Church, and his influence was felt throughout Methodism and the Christian community both at home and abroad. Serious illness sharply curtailed his activities in the summer of 1894, and he died in Macon on September 4, 1894. His wife Ella, who survived him by many years, continued to be active in the work he had begun.

Osgood Clark's published works, besides the Wesley Memorial Volume (New York: Phillips and Hunt, 1881) of which Clark was the editor, include A Plea for the Unification of the University of Georgia and the Denominational Colleges ... (Macon: Burke, 1874), A Sketch of the Late Alfred T. Mann (Macon: Burke, 1889), and Elijah Vindicated; or The Answer By Fire (Nashville: Southern Methodist Publishing House, 1886). Biographical information about James Osgood Andrew Clark may be found in the Minutes of the South Georgia Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South for the year 1894; in the Emory College Bulletins and Catalogs, 1867-1871.

Scope and Content Note

The James Osgood Andrew Clark papers consists of correspondence, photographs, clippings, notes, sermons, poems, memos, personal reminiscences, manuscripts and typescripts of writings, and a scrapbook.

The first two boxes consist mainly of personal and official correspondence of Osgood Clark and members of his family, undated correspondence, photographs, and clippings. The correspondence covers a wide variety of topics and is arranged chronologically.

Scattered throughout the folders of correspondence are approximately 75 letters from Osgood Clark to his wife Ella Anderson Clark. Many of these letters are quite detailed and lengthy. Most of them were written while Clark was away from his family on missions of church business. They provide an excellent record of Clark's day-to-day activities, his travels, his work, and his comment on various events such as the assassination of President James Abram Garfield and the Presidential election of 1884.

From 1807-1848, there are a few items consisting mainly of correspondence of Clark's ancestors and of records and letters concerning his education. Between 1853 and 1858, there appear a series of documents relating to Clark's careers in the church and in law. These include his admission to the Georgia bar signed by Henry Rootes Jackson (1820-1898); his license to preach; a certificate naming him a deacon of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, signed by James Osgood Andrew (bp., 1794-1871); and a certificate naming him an elder of the church signed by George Foster Pierce (bp., 1811-1884).

Between April 1859 and May 1875 there is a variety of personal and official correspondence including letters written to his wife Ella; typed copies of Civil War correspondence of unknown origin concerning a Confederate soldier named Willie R. Ross (September 1863 to June 1866); letters mentioning church business; material relating to Clark's service as financial agent and professor at Emory College including receipts, notes, and a letter; correspondence about issues in Georgia education; and miscellaneous correspondence with many individuals.

The period from July 1875 to June 1881 marks the heaviest concentration of correspondence in the collection. The vast majority of letters in this period concern in some way the building of the Wesley Monumental Methodist Church in Savannah, a project for which Clark assumed major responsibility. Some of the letters, most notably those from Alexander M. Wynn, contain construction plans and building details; others, many of them to his wife and children, include reports by Clark on his fundraising efforts and travels throughout the United States and British Isles. In order to raise more money for this project, Clark developed the idea of publishing and selling the Wesley Memorial Volume. Many of the early letters in this group are to or from church, political, and lay leaders from the Methodist Church and other denominations around the world asking them to submit an essay about John Wesley and Methodism for this collection. The book was published in 1881, and much of the later correspondence in this large group of letters includes information about these essays and their authors and praise for Osgood Clark's efforts. One notable feature in this part of the collection is found at the end of the papers for the year 1879; there are located brief biographical sketches of many of those involved in the Wesley Memorial Volume project. Those whose biographical information may be found there include: Orlando Thomas Dobbin (1807-1890), Erastus Otis Haven (bp., 1820-1888), Lucius H[enry] Holsey (bp., [1841-1920], Joseph Kirsop (1826-?), Holland Nimmons McTyeire (bp., 1824-1889), William Morley Punshon (1824-1881), Sir Charles Reed (1819-1881), Gervase Smith (1821 [1822]-1882], George John Stevenson (1818-1888), George Lansing Taylor (1835- ), and Luke Tyerman (1820-1889). A biography of Edmund Dehault de Pressensé (1824-1891) may be found in a letter dated May 2, 1879.

The correspondence from July 1881 to July 1894 covers a wide variety of subjects. Many of the letters were written by Osgood Clark to his wife Ella while he was serving as a delegate to the Ecumenical Methodist Conference in London in 1881; there are also letters to their four children from his travels as well as family letters about other matters. Other letters concern church business, various conferences, the Wesley Memorial Volume, the history of the Clark family, and other miscellaneous topics.

Correspondence between August 1894 and January 1900 mainly concerns Osgood Clark's illness in the summer of 1894 and his death on September 4 of that same year. The last group of dated correspondence covers the years between November 1932 and June 1959. Most of the papers are those of Osgood Clark's daughter Lella A. Clark, including reminiscences about her father and his work; material relating to her attempts to find a repository for her father's papers and valuable Methodist hymn books and correspondence; letters in search of a publisher for her mother's memoirs; information about the Clark family slaves and antebellum slave songs; historical information about the Clark and Anderson families; a history of the slave days of Lucius H[enry] Holsey (Bishop, 1841-1920); unidentifiable writings about slavery; and questions about local history.

Following are three folders of undated correspondence and miscellaneous material. Some of the letters are complete and a few of the correspondents are identifiable; also included are a variety of notes, letter fragments, family reminiscences, and genealogical information as well as a poem dedicated to Susanna (Annesley) Wesley (1670-1742) from "Heroines of Early Methodism," a Southern Methodist school book.

There are also three folders of photographs including those of family members and of identified and unidentified individuals, some of whom were associated with the Wesley Memorial Volume.

The four final folders in this group contain clippings, many of which are reprints of Clark's letters about the Wesley Monumental Methodist Church, the Wesley Memorial Volume, the first Ecumenical Methodist Conference in 1881, and the Presidential election of 1884. There are also clippings about Osgood Clark's life, and his work, book reviews, and miscellaneous articles and pictures.

Boxes 3-4 are mostly filled with sermons; many are complete and some are of substantial length. There are also unfinished sermons, various memos, a few poems, and notes. These papers cover a wide variety of topics and are arranged in no specific subject or chronological order. Most notable among the sermons is a series of seven lengthy sermons, part of a longer series entitled "There Shall Be A Resurrection of the Dead". There are poems scattered throughout this series, as well as manuscripts for the Wesley Memorial Volume; a history of the Woman's Missionary Societies of the Vineville and Mulberry Street Methodist Churches; a typed memo about Ella Anderson Clark; reminiscences about old Macon and Wesleyan Female College, possibly by Ella Anderson Clark; and four folders of unidentifiable fragments of sermons, notes, and manuscripts.

The three final boxes in the collection consist primarily of typescripts and holographs of writings by Osgood Clark. Included also are some reminiscences, primarily by his wife Ella; a scrapbook of clippings related to Osgood Clark; and twelve personal account books and notebooks.

The reminiscences, entitled "Golden Days in the Old South," are an interesting and informative story written mostly by Ella Anderson Clark about her life. She has written extensively about slavery, plantation life, her life during the Civil War, various Methodists including James Osgood Andrew (Bishop, 1794-1871) and Lucius H[enry] Holsey (Bishop, l841-1920), the history of Methodism, the division of the Methodist Church, her education, and her marriage. There are also stories about as well as sheet music for many hymns and spirituals.

The two scrolls were given to Ella Anderson Clark by Madame Chang Kai-Shek in appreciation for tutoring her while she was at Wesleyan College in 1913. The scrolls, written in Chinese, talk about missionary activities in China, but do not mention the Clark family nor have any connection to any other Georgia Methodist missionaries. A rough translation of the scrolls is available.

Finding Aid Note

A detailed index to the letters of those correspondents having four or more letters in this collection is available.

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Container List

Box Folder Content
1 1-8 December 12, 1807 - November 18, 1864
1 2 January 11, 1865 - November 13, 1874
1 3 March 17, 1875 – December 10, 1875
1 4 February 9, 1876 – November 24, 1876
1 5 January 12, 1877 – June 27, 1878
1 6 July 2, 1878 – August 30, 1878
1 7 September 1, 1878 – September 30, 1878
1 8 October 2, 1878 – December 27, 1878
1 9 January 2, 1879 – February 12, 1879
1 10 February 20, 1879 – March 29, 1879
1 11 April 1, 1879 – May 9, 1879
1 12 June 4, 1879 – March 16, 1880
1 13 July 3, 1880 – March 10, 1881
1 14 March 11, 1881 – June 29, 1881
1 15 July 1, 1881 – July 31, 1881
1 16 August 4, 1881 – August 30, 1881
2 1 September 7, 1881 – September [undated], 1881
2 2 October 28, 1881 - March 9, 1885
2 3 January 15, 1887 – November 24, 1892
2 4 April 11, 1893 – August 31, 1894
2 5 September 3, 1894 – July 3, 1915
2 6 November 13, 1932 – June 27, 1959
2 7 Undated correspondence: Identifiable Papers
2 9 Undated correspondence: Unidentifiable Papers
2 10 Family records and reminiscences
2 11 Family Members
2 12 Identified Individuals
2 13 Unidentified Individuals, Miscellaneous Photographs
2 14 About James Osgood Andrew Clark
2 15 Articles, Letters, and Speeches by Clark
2 16 Wesley Monumental Methodist Church and Wesley Memorial Volume
2 17 Miscellaneous Articles and Pictures
Sermons, Notes, Poems [by Clark unless otherwise noted]
3 1 "Among the errors which crept into the church..."
3 2 [Analogy: Greek games and Christian life]
3 3 "And exhorted them all..."
3 4 "And when He is come, He will reprove the world..."
3 5 The Bishops and the Annual Conference Mission Boards.
3 6 "The brightness of His glory and the express image of His person..."
3 7 Centurion's Faith.
3 8 Character of the Judges of Charles Stuart.
3 9 Chief of Sinners. [incomplete]
3 10 The Duchess of York in Richard II. [incomplete]
3 11 [Editorial: Obligation to pay debts after the Civil War]
3 12 [The English Church] (untitled, incomplete)
3 13 [Eulogy of Socrates Enthydemus Arnold] [untitled]
3 14 "For dust thou art and unto thou shalt return..."
3 15 [General Rules of the Methodist Episcopal Church South]
3 16 [Greek and Roman Literature]
3 17 The Green Tree.
3 18 History of Home Mission Society of Vineville and Mulberry. [by Lella Clark]
3 19 I am crucified with Christ. [incomplete]
3 20 "I charge thee therefore before God..."
3 21 "I exhort therefore that prayers, supplications..."
3 22 "If any man will come after me..."
3 23 "In what sense charity is greater..."
3 24 "It may be night to the sinner..." [incomplete]
3 25 [John Wesley and Early Methodism] [incomplete]
3 26 Johnson's Rasselas: Its style and its views of human life.
3 27 "The King of Denmark's Ride" by Caroline Norton.
3 28 "And the King's servants said unto the king..."
3 29 The Land of the Blue Flower.
3 30 The Leaven and Grace.
3 31 "The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptation..."
3 32 Manasseh. [incompete]
3 33 Marshall Claxton's Painting of the Death-Bed of Wesley by the Reverend S. Romilly Hall.
3 34 Memo re Mrs. J.O.A. Clark.
3 35 Methodism in America, 1766-1784. [incomplete]
3 36 Methodist Episcopal Church. [incomplete]
3 37 Metrical Translation of Romans XII.
3 38 Mr. Spurgeon at the Tabernacle. [incomplete]
3 39 "My Grace is sufficient for thee..."
3 40 My Late Sermon on the Charleston Earthquake.
3 41 "Now He that hath wrought God..." [incomplete]
3 42 The Objective and Subjective as they influence the character of the poet, the dramatist, and the historian.
3 43 The Origin of the Latin Language.
3 44 Parable of the Pounds.
3 45 Poems: Christmas Card, Faith, and Redemption by L.M.
3 46 Paul Before Felix and Drusilla.
3 47 [Rebecca the Jewess in Ivanhoe]
3 48 [Reminiscences of Old Macon and Wesleyan Female College [by Ella Anderson Clark]
3 49 Resurrection of the Dead.
3 50 The Security of God's Protection.
4 1 Self-Examination.
4 2 Shadrack, Meshack, and Abed-Nego.
4 3 "So run, that ye may obtain...."
4 4 "Spoke often one to another..."
4 5 The Style of Johnson and Addison Compared.
4 6 Suggestions for Preserving the Purity and Unity of Episcopal Methodism.
4 7 The Temptation of Christ by the Devil in the Wilderness.
4 8 [Testimonial: Dr. William M. Hardwick]
4 9 "That the laborer is worthy of his hire is enforced by..."
4 10 "There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God..."
4 11 There Shall Be a Resurrection of the Dead, IV
4 12 There Shall Be a Resurrection of the Dead, V
4 13 There Shall Be a Resurrection of the Dead, VI
4 14 There Shall Be a Resurrection of the Dead, VII
4 15 There Shall Be a Resurrection of the Dead, VIII
4 16 There Shall Be a Resurrection of the Dead, IX
4 17 There Shall Be a Resurrection of the Dead, X
4 18 "Therefore you shall lay up these my words in your heart..."
4 19 "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength..."
4 20 "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets..."
4 21 "This do in remembrance of me..."
4 22 "This is a faithful saying...that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners..."
4 23 The Two Builders.
4 24 "We are confident, O say..."
4 25 [Wesley and Fletcher for Wesley Memorial Volume] by James H. Overton
4 26 Wesley and Methodism.
4 27 "Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind..."
4 28 "Who being the brightness of His glory..."
4 29 "Who can understand his errors?..."
4 30 "Wilt thou not revive us again?..." [incomplete]
4 31 Fragments of manuscripts and notes [1 of 2]
4 32 Fragments of manuscripts and notes [2 of 2]
4 33 Misc. parts of manuscripts, sermons and notes
4 34 Parts of incomplete sermons
Book-length manuscripts-James Osgood Clark
5 1 "Elijah Vindicated," MS (1 of 2)
5 2 "Elijah Vindicated," MS (2 of 2)
5 3 "The Resurrection Body," MS (incomplete)
5 4 "The Resurrection of the Dead," TS (1 of 2)
5 5 "The Resurrection of the Dead," TS (2 of 2)
5 6 "Thecla," MS
5 7 "Thecla," TS
6 1 "With What Body," MS (1 of 3)
6 2 "With What Body," MS (2 of 3)
6 3 "With What Body," MS (3 of 3)
Writings by Others
6 4 Carlson, David, The Life and Work of the Reverend James Osgood Andrew Clark
6 5 Clark, Ella Anderson, [Golden Days in the Old South], early version
6 6 Clark, Ella Anderson, "Golden Days in the Old South"
6 7 Clark, Lella A. [daughter of J.O.A. Clark], various writings
Bound Volumes
7 1 Scrapbook of clippings, ca. 1874-1879
Twelve notebooks containing accounts, sermon notes, etc.
Items on Loan
8 1 Correspondence
8 2 Newspaper clippings
8 3 Sermon: "The Lord knoweth how to deliver the Godly out of temptation…"
8 4 Sermon: Fragment
8 5 Writings: Translations of parts of Virgil
8 6 Writings: Fragments
9 1 2 scrolls given by Madame Chang Kai-Shek to Ella Anderson Clark [RESTRICTED]
8 7 Translation [rough] of scrolls