ID: Eliza Randall (Fairfield) Clark (Gen. 9: John-Walter-William-Skipper-William-David-Jason-Jason-Eliza)

Source: Eliza Fairfield Clark Memorial Center, Pomfret, CT

Notes: Eliza was the daughter of Jason Williams Fairfield Jr. and his first wife, Eliza Randall. Jason's first wife died shortly after giving birth to Eliza Fairfield May 4, 1867, in Providence, RI. According to family historian Frank Corbin, "at the request of the mother the bringing up of Eliza was intrusted to Miss Sarah Ricard, an old and very dear friend of the mother. While Eliza was a small girl they lived in Woonsocket, RI, in the winter and spent the summers at the old Colonial home of the Randall family on Ragged Hill in Pomfret, CT. After Jonathan Randall and Sarah Ricard were married, they and Eliza stayed on the farm [in Pomfret] throughout the year. Eliza attended the academy in Woodstock, CT [a few miles north of Pomfret] and graduated there. In the late 1880s and early 1890s she lived in Chicago with the family of her Aunt Caroline (Fairfield) Corbin. Incidentally, she thoroughly "did" the World's Columbian Exposition in 1893. Shortly thereafter she returned to the East. There she enrolled in the nurses training class at the hospital in Newton Lower Falls, MA. After graduation in 1897, she was made assistant superintendent and later superintendent. She held the latter office until she married. While working in the hospital she met Dr. John D. Clark, who was an intern there. They were married in 1905. Dr. Clark graduated from Harvard Medical School and did postgraduate work at the Mayo Hospital in Rochester, MN. At the time of their marriage he was assisting in surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital. He went into general practice at Auberndale, MA, and also taught anatomy at Harvard. John entered the Army in 1917, at Fort Oglethorpe, GA, where he remained until the end of the war in 1919. He was a surgeon and instructor in anatomy. While still in the hospital, Eliza bought a fine old Colonial house, built in 1735, located in Abingdon, CT [near Pomfret]. They lived in it for m any years, but as they grew older it seemed to be to much of a care, so they sold it. However, they reserved a smaller house on the property in which they lived for the balance of their lives. There was no medical center within miles. After Eliza's death, John built a center in her memory [in Abingdon, CT] and called it the Eliza Fairfield Clark Memorial Center [see photo of plaque on building below portrait] . Three doctors [were] on full-time duty, and they are fully employed. John was born July 5, 1879, and died September 20, 1952. Eliza died December 14, 1946. They had no children."

On a trip to Pomfret in 2004, I was able to personally visit the small clinic named after Eliza. Her portrait hangs inside the clinic lobby. Eliza and her husband are buried in New Abingdon Cemetery.

color oil painting of Eliza Fairfield Clark