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John Clark

Gov. John Clark

  • January 21, 1817 - January 18, 1820
  • Federalist
  • February 1, 1761
  • August 14, 1821
  • Delaware
  • Married Sarah Cook; one child
  • Army


JOHN CLARK, Delaware’s 11th governor, was born in Smyrna, Delaware, on February 1, 1761. His schooling was limited but he attained most of his knowledge through his own desire for information, becoming well read. Before entering politics, Clark was appointed on September 5, 1805 to serve as justice of the peace. He also was appointed colonel of the Third Regiment of the Delaware militia, serving from October 5, 1807 to April 22, 1808. On October 1, 1816 he was elected Governor of Delaware, and on January 21, 1817 he was sworn into office. During his tenure, the Society of the State of Delaware for the Promotion of American Manufactures was established. Clark also advocated for the modification of “an act for the more easy and speedy recovery of small debts.” Clark left office on January 18, 1820, retiring from public service. He later served as president of the Commercial Bank of Smyrna. Governor John Clark died on August 14, 1821, and is buried at the Duck Creek Presbyterian Churchyard in Smyrna, Delaware.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 1, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

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