Bio: Clarke, Charles Dixon (Commemorative Bio - 1895)

Poster: Crystal Wendt


Charles Dixon Clarke

Charles Dixon Clarke was born in Chatham, England, November 20, 1858, and is a son of William Dixon Clarke, who was born in Northampton about 1825, and whose father, James Dixon Clarke, married A. Burwell. To their union were born five children, namely: William D.; John C., of Wausau, Marathon Co., Wis.; Charles Burwell, of Mt. Vernon, Baker Township, Douglas Co., S. Dak.; and Mary A. and Elizabeth, residing in England. The parents died in England.

William Dixon Clarke had a common school education and when about sixteen shipped before the mast in the American navy, in the ship “Summers,” served four years, rose to the rank of able seaman, and visited all part of the world. When about twenty he enlisted in the English Army, in the Thirty-second Cornwell Light Infantry, commencing as a private and rising to the rank of color-sergeant of the Grenadier Company. He was through the Indian mutiny, and received a medal for meritorious services on the field. He was wounded thirteen times, sent home to Dover on account of his wounds, and died there in 1859. He married Mary Sullivan, who was born in Fermony, Ireland, about 1825; and they had three children: Harriet A., now living in England; John D., in Wausau, Marathon Co., Wis.; and Charles D., the subject of this sketch. But little can be learned of the family of the mother, only that is was a large family and scattered in America. She married again and lives in England, having for her husband Thomas Callow, who was a soldier’s master baker of the Thirty-second Cornwall Regiment, and they had three children: Elizabeth (now living in England), Thomas and William.

Charles Dixon Clarke was educated in the military school of the Thirty-second Cornwall Regiment up to the age of twelve years, and then attended the Catholic Brothers’ School on the Island of Mauritius. Up to the age of fourteen he was with his father’s regiment, drew rations and was educated as all soldiers’ children in England are entitled to be. When fourteen they can enlist if they desire; otherwise they have to make their own living and cannot depend upon the regiment. From the age of fourteen he was assistant care taker for the military barracks, and third assistant lighthouse-keeper at Canonniers Point, on the Island of Mauritius, for a year and a half. During this time the assistant commissary general, R. H. Dundee, took a liking to him, brought him to England for six months, and furnished him money to visit his friends. On January 4, 1875, he enlisted as a private in the First Battalion, Sixteenth Regiment of Infantry, stationed at Plymouth, England, in which he served six years, and was promoted to the rank of color-sergeant. His regiment was stationed part of the time in Ireland. He was gymnastic instructor and fencing master of the regiment for one year, and passed his examination for a commission as sub-lieutenant.

On December 1st, 1880, Charles Dixon Clarke, was united in marriage at Belfast, Ireland, with Martha Creton, and they have become the parent of six children, whom four are living: James C., William C., Margaret C. and Percy W.; John C. and Jane E. died when young. Mrs. Clarke’s parents, James and Mary Ann (Scarlet) Creton, had six children: George, James, Jane E., Lizzie, Mary Ann and Martha. Mrs. Clarke’s father was governor of the military prison at Belfast, Ireland. The death of her mother occurred in 1891.

Wishing to come to America Mr. Clarke bought his discharge in 1881, but he regrets today that he did not remain a soldier. Arriving in the United States, he came to Wausau, Marathon Co., Wis., to his uncle, J. C. Clarke, who was a mill owner, remained there two years, and learned the lumber trade. In the spring of 1883 he came to Merrill, Lincoln Co., Wis., took the position of shipping clerk on the Lincoln Lumber Co., and in eighteen months became bookkeeper. He next ran a skating rink one year, hired out to D. F. Comstock as shipper for six months, then worked for the H. W. Wright Lumber Co., the first year sorting and piling, and for two years running a mill daytimes and scaling loges and buying lumber in the winter, remaining with this firm until 1894. At the time he left he was superintendent in full charge. In April, 1894, he engaged with the Illinois & Wisconsin Lumber Co., the largest on the river, and is superintendent. In 1892 he visited England with his family for three months. Mr. Clarke was the first man to invent and patent anything to assist in the piling of lumber, and is the patentee of Clarke’s devices for piling and loading lumber: First, Patent Lumber Piler or Roller; second, The Extension Lumber Jack; third, his Adjustable Roller for loading cars.

In politics Mr. Clarke is a Republican, in religion Presbyterian, and socially the is a Mason, a member of the A. O. U. W., and was a charter member in the organization of Company G., of Wausau, of the Wisconsin National Guard. During his boyhood he was with his regiment in South Africa, could talk the Zulu language well, and was in the diamond and gold fields of Africa.

Since the above notes were written, Mr. Clarke has experienced the greatest sorrow of his life in the death of his beloved wife, which took place after a brief illness, June 29, 1895. Mrs. Clarke was still a young woman, having been born in Belfast, Ireland, March 13, 1862. She was a beautiful woman, and the possessor of a disposition that was charming in its affectionate loveliness. Bright and sunny in her nature, she was a constant source of comfort and happiness to all who came in contact with her. A devout Christian, she gave much of her time to active work in the Church, and in the Ladies Aid Society connected therewith. In all the relations of life, and particularly in those of wife and mother, she was faithful and loving, and her memory is embalmed in the hearts of those to whom her loss seems irreparable. The funeral was largely attended, giving evidence of the esteem in which she was held by the community.

---Source: Commemorative Biographical Record of the Upper Wisconsin Counties of Waupaca, Portage, Wood, Marathon, Lincoln, Oneida, Vilas, Langlade and Shawano. publ. 1895 by J. H. Beers & Co., Chicago 1110 pages, illustrated; Page 679-680


**This Lincoln Co., WI Internet Library, ALHN & AHGP website is dedicated to the free sharing of information by researchers, local historians, genealogists and educators.  Because of our non-profit status, submissions are not to be used for profiteering of any kind.   Our representatives cannot accept gratuities beyond the basic expenses (i.e. postage, copying, courthouse or rental fees) for obtaining requested information.  We reserve the right to ban the involvement of anyone who intentionally disregards these policies.  Promotion of research services or publications is not permitted on these pages, or by our representatives without the prior endorsement of the site overseers.  If you need professional help, we recommend contacting an accredited genealogist.   Please show your appreciation for this database by Becoming a Lincoln County History Buff.


*** This copyrighted Lincoln Co., Wis. genealogy and history material is used on this nonprofit site with permission of the submitter.  Contact us if you are personally aware of anyone using this submitted data inappropriately.  It may not be copied and posted on any commercial genealogy sites such as Family Tree Maker or the merged companies Ancestry.Com/RootsWeb/MyFamily or sold for personal profit.

Report Broken Links



This page is a part of the Lincoln County, WI Internet Library Project

Every submission is protected by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998.