Clark Family Papers
1679-1814
1 box (0.5 linear ft.)
Call no.: MS 654

Abstract

The Clark family played a prominent role in the colonial and early national history of Newton, Massachusetts. John Clark and his wife Elizabeth Norman settled in Cambridge Village (now Newton), Massachusetts, in about 1681, and played an active role in the public life of the town. His son William, grandson Norman, and great-grandson Norman followed in John's footsteps, serving as Selectmen and, in the case of Norman, Jr., as the Collector of taxes during and after the Revolutionary War.

This small collection traces the early history of Newton, Mass., through the lives and activities of four generations of the family of John Clark. While the majority of the collection consists of deeds or related legal documents pertaining to properties in Newton (or in one case, Connecticut), a few items provide glimpses into other Clark family activities. As tax collector for Newton during and after the Revolution, Norman Clark, Jr., left an interesting documentary trail that touches on financial priorities in town, including the collection of taxes for support of the church, Revolutionary War soldiers, and road building.

Access

The collection is open for research.

Language:

English
Clark Family Papers
1679-1814
1 box (0.5 linear ft.)
Call no.: MS 654

Historical Note

Survey of property purchased by Thomas and William Wallis

Survey of property purchased by Thomas and William Wallis

The Clark family played a prominent role in the colonial and early national history of Newton, Massachusetts. Although there are some discrepancies in the early family history, John Clark (1641-1695) and his wife Elizabeth Norman (b. 1665) appear to have settled in Cambridge Village (now Newton), Massachusetts, in about 1681. When Clark died in 1695, most of his estate passed to his sons John and William (1686-1737), including a profitable sawmill and eight acres of land he had purchased from Indians near their fishing grounds on the Upper Falls of the Charles River.

In 1725, William Clark acquired additional property in Newton that became the site of his family's farm. Active in the public life of his community, Clark and his wife Hannah (Kee) had seven children, including two sons who lived to their majority, Norman (1710-1787) and William (b. 1716). Norman's son, Norman Jr. (1751-1826), followed in his father's and grandfather's footsteps in representing his community, serving as a town Selectman and, during and after the Revolutionary War, as Collector of Taxes. Although never exceptionally wealthy, by the 1790s the family were counted among the Newton elite as steady and prosperous citizens.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

This small collection traces the early history of Newton, Mass., through the lives and activities of four generations of the family of John Clark. While the majority of the collection consists of deeds or related legal documents pertaining to properties in Newton (or in one case, Connecticut), a few items provide glimpses into other Clark family activities. As tax collector for Newton during and after the Revolution, Norman Clark, Jr., left an interesting documentary trail that touches on financial priorities in town, including the collection of taxes for support of the church, Revolutionary War soldiers, and road building.

Among the more notable individual items are a deposition from Joseph Bartlett regarding his memory of the location of the Indian fishing grounds on the Charles River that were purchased by John Clark for his sawmill (1747); a receipt for issuance of bounty pay to Aaron Parker for service in the Massachusetts Line of the Continental Army; a deed for a plot in the Newton Burying Ground (1802); and receipts for the purchase of silverware, tinware, and furniture, including Grecian card tables, a Pembroke table, looking glass (1828). A document from Nicholas Bartlett in 1736 appears to be an early example of speculation in military lands: Bartlett assigns rights to William Clark to land Nathanael Mackey received in Killingly, Connecticut, in recognition of his service during King Philip's War.

Also noteworthy are two deeds signed by Samuel Sewall (1689 and 1694), one of the judges during the Salem Witch Trials. The earlier of these deeds was docketed by Sewall on September 12, 1692, at the height of Witch Trials.

Collection inventory
Baptist Society (Newton, Mass.), Deed to Norman Clark for pews in Baptist Meeting, Newton, Mass.
1804 Dec. 3
Box 1
Bartlett, Joseph, Testimony regarding location of Indian fishing place on the Charles River, Newton, Mass.
1747 Oct. 14
Box 1
Bartlett, Nicholas, Deed to William Clark, Groton, Mass.
1736/27 Feb. 3
Box 1

Ceding rights to any lands granted to Nathanael Mackey of Killingly, Conn., for wartime service under Capt. Noah Wiswell

Brattle, William and Elizabeth, Deed to William Clark, Cambridge, Mass.
1709 Mar. 20
Box 1
Clark, Daniel, Deed to Daniel and Thomas Hastings and Timothy Jackson, Newton, Mass.
1798 Nov. 12
Box 1

Daniel Hastings is identified as a stonecutter

Clark, Daniel, Power of attorney to Norman Clark, Newton, Mass.
1799 May 28
Box 1
Clark, John, Bond with William Clark for payment of loyalties to their sisters from the estate of their father, John, Newton, Mass.
1712 Mar. 29
Box 1
Clark, John, Release of demands against Norman Clark on behalf of Atherton Clark, Hopkinton, Mass.
1771 Aug. 17
Box 1
Clark, John, Will, Newton, Mass.
1695 Jan. 3
Box 1
Clark, John (Jr.) and Ann, Deed to William Clark, Newton, Mass.
1725 Dec. 12
Box 1
Clark, Norman, Lease of property in Lunenburg to John Hill, Newton, Mass.
1775 Apr. 10
Box 1
Clark, Norman, Bond for L800 to Hannah Clark, Newton, Mass.
1791 Oct. 27
Box 1
Clark, Norman, Estate documents for Hannah Clark, Newton, Mass.
1802-1803
2 items
Box 1
Clark, Norman, Judgment against Ephraim Bacon, Dedham, Mass.
1784 June 1
Box 1
Clark, Norman and Hannah, Deed to Norman Clark, Jr., Newton, Mass.
1785 May 2
Box 1
Clark, Norman, Jr., Deeds
1782-1814
9 items
Box 1
Clark, Norman, Sr., Deeds
1741-1770
7 items
Box 1

Deeds from William Clark (1741); Benjamin Parker, yeoman (1742); Ebenezer Parker and Enoch Parker, gentlemen 1744); Francis Blanden, yeoman, and Elizabeth Blanden (1752); Jeremiah Wiswall and Samuel Norcross, yeomen (1754); Abraham Jackson, blacksmith (1755); John Ireland, yeoman, and Lydia Ireland (1770).

Clark, William, Copy of deed of sale of property to Noah Parker, Newton, Mass.
1723 Nov. 6
Box 1
Facts and Calculations Respecting the Population and Territory of the United States
ca.1799
Box 1
Gibbs, Hannah, Deed to Norman Clark, Newton, Mass.
1770 May 18
Box 1
Hatfield, Joseph, Receipt for payment of damages to William Clark, Newton, Mass.
1734 Aug. 2
Box 1
Hillton, Samuel and Sarah, Receipt of L300 from Norman and William Clark for inheritance from estate of William Clark, Newton, Mass.
1740 May 20
Box 1
Ireland, John, Mortgage to Norman Clark, Lunenburg, Mass.
Undated
Box 1
Ivers, Thomas, Warrant to Norman Clark to collect taxes due "to supply the Deficiency of the Massachusetts Line of the Army," Boston, Mass.
1783 Feb. 8
Box 1
Kingsbery, Jonathan, Plan of Norman Clark's farm, Newton, Mass.
1783 Apr. 28
OS 1
Mackey, Daniel and Sarah, Deed to Nathanael Mackey, Newton, Mass.
1703 Nov. 4
Box 1
Newton (Mass.). Assessors, Warrant for Norman Clark to arrest Ephraim Hammond for non-payment of taxes, Newton, Mass.
1784 Feb. 26
Box 1
Newton (Mass.). Assessors, Warrant to Norman Clark to collect taxes, Newton, Mass.
1779-1799
14 items
Box 1
Newton (Mass.). Assessors, Warrant for Norman Clark to arrest James Grant for non-payment of taxes, Newton, Mass.
1779 June 14
Box 1
Oliver, Thomas, Agreement and receipt for money paid by William Clark owed to Samuel Oliver, Cambridge, Mass.
1729/30 Jan. 13
2 items
Box 1
Oliver, Thomas, Agreement with William Clark, Cambridge, Mass.
1729/30 Jan. 13
Box 1
Parker, Aaron, Receipt from Norman Clark for L900 bounty for enlisting in the Continental Army, Newton, Mass.
1780 July 4
Box 1
Parker, Joseph and Jonathan Bixby, Deed to Norman Clark for property of the late Thomas Parker, Newton, Mass.
1790 June 1
Box 1
Parker, Nathaniel, Bond to William Clark, Newton, Mass.
1730 Sept. 19
Box 1
Prentice, Thomas and Elizabeth, Deed to William Clark, Newton, Mass.
1713 Nov. 2
OS 1
Preston, Daniel and Abigail, Deed (copy) to Daniel Macay, [Newton, Mass.]
1679 May 17
Box 1
Receipts and miscellaneous, Boston, Mass.
1828
4 items
Box 1

Includes receipts for silverware, tinware, and furniture (Grecian card tables, a Pembroke table, looking glass).

Rogers, John, Deed for tomb in burying yard to Norman and Alathina Clark, Newton, Mass.
1802 Oct. 4
Box 1
Thaxter, Samuel and John Chandler, Boundary survey of property of Jared Elliot, Newton, Mass.
1711
Box 1

Fragmentary, missing lower sixth

Tucker, William and Elizabeth, Deed to William Clark, Newton, Mass.
1719 Apr. 7
OS 1
Twitchell, Eli, Agreement with Norman Clark to pay minor children at their majority, Bethel, Mass.
1804 Jan. 30
Box 1
Wallis, Thomas and William, Survey and plat map of property purchased from Timothy Woodbridge, late property of Capt. Thomas Prentice, Cambridge Village, Mass.
ca.1690
Box 1
Wallis, Thomas, Sarah, and William, Deed to property in New Cambridge, Mass.
1694 April 10
OS 1

Intact seals and docketed on verso by Samuel Sewall

Woodbridge, Timothy and Mabell, Deed to Thomas and William Wallis, New Cambridge, Mass.
1689 Oct. 10
Box 1

Signed by Samuel Sewall

Woodward, Ebenezer and Nathaniel Beal, Deposition relative to boundaries of property of Norman Clark, Newton, Mass.
1761 June 29
Box 1
Administrative information
Provenance

Gift of Judith Kelly, 2008-2009.

Processing Information

Processed by Dex Haven, February 2010.

Bibliography

Smith, Samuel F., History of Newton, Massachusetts, Town and City, From its Earliest Settlement to the Present Time, 1630-1880 (Boston: American Logotype Co., 1880). Call no.: F74.N56 S6 (the UMass Amherst copy has been digitized and is available through the Open Content Alliance and Internet Archive

Copyright and Use (More informationConnect to publication information)

Cite as: Clark Family Papers (MS 654). Special Collections and University Archives, University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries.

Search terms
Subjects
  • Newton (Mass.)--History--18th century.
  • Real property--Massachusetts--Newton.
  • Taxation--Massachusetts.
  • United States--History--Revolution, 1775-1783.
Names
  • Clark family.
  • Clark, John.
  • Clark, Norman.
  • Clark, William.
Genre terms
  • Deeds.
  • Wills.