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CLARK, MAURICE B.

CLARK, MAURICE B. (6 Sept. 1827-9 March 1901) was a Cleveland businessman remembered chiefly as the first partner of JOHN D. ROCKEFELLER. Clark was a native of Malmesbury, Eng., who emigrated to America in 1847 and soon made his way to Cleveland via Boston. In 1853 he married another English immigrant, Mary Clement. A job on the OHIO AND ERIE CANAL led him into the grocery and grain business, and he went to work for the commission house of Otis, Brownell & Co. on River St. In 1859 he and Rockefeller, a former fellow student at FOLSOM'S MERCANTILE COLLEGE, established their own commission business, Clark and Rockefeller. With the sociable Clark handling most of the outside buying and selling, and the industrious Rockefeller in charge of the office and books, the company did $1/2 million of business in its first year. The partners then joined with Clark's brothers, James and Richard, and SAMUEL ANDREWS to enter the oil business in 1863 as Andrews, Clark & Co. Rockefeller and Andrews bought out the Clarks 2 years later, after which Clark and Col. OLIVER H. PAYNE formed the rival works of Clark, Payne & Co. This firm was merged into Rockefeller's STANDARD OIL CO. in 1872. Clark later organized and served as president of the Co-operative Stove Co. An active abolitionist prior to the CIVIL WAR, he ran unsuccessfully for mayor in the 1860s and served a term on the CLEVELAND CITY COUNCIL in 1872-3. Following the death of his first wife in 1881, he married Mary Semlow and built a large house in GLENVILLE. Buried in LAKE VIEW CEMETERY, he was survived by his 2nd wife and 2 daughters, Mrs. Bell Teagle and Mrs. Emeline Coit.