Hi Joe: Good to connect with you. Here is part of the information I gleaned. Part of it was posted on the web site for Thomas W. Sharpless. I also had a contact from a Clark descendant who sent me copies of bible pages from a Clark bible, but it had Menees family information in it. the fact that it had a great deal of Menees information in it is interesting.I was only sent those pages and not other pages in the bible so it was very incomplete.
My guess is that Elizabeth (Bodiford) Clark and John B.B.B. Menees had a relationship beginning from their days in Lowndes Co., AL continuing as they moved into Butler Co. and Crenshaw Co (which was then still part of Butler). They probably knew each other when they were both young both they married and after each of their spouses died. Butler Co. records show that John Menees stood bond for one of Elizabeth's son, George W. Clark for his marriage license.
The Menees family was originally known as McNees and came from Ireland around Country Antrim. The name changed to Menees around the time of the American Revolution.
As to Elizabeth & John, the letter below not withstanding, there is no solid evidence. John died intestate and Elizabeth and the Clark children are not mentioned. I am trying to find other evidence that might corroborate the Clark family story. Also, I looked for Thomas Clark in the 1850 census and did not find him. That's not conclusive, since a lot of people were missed in the census.
I haven't found the letter writer (Sue Hussey) to ask her questions. Perhaps you know her or of her.Would be interested to hear your comments.
The following letter is from Sue Hussey (Allie Sue Clark) the daughter of James Bascom Clark (son of James Madison) and Cora Redman Clark. It was addressed to Eloise Hayles Steele who is the daughter of Ethel Olene Jones Hayles, granddaughter of Emma Frances Clark Jones, daughter of James Madison.
I know you thought I was never going to send this information, but I lost your address. I called Frances to get it.
I don't know of you knew that Grandpa Clark (James Madison) was illegitimate. Mama told me that when I was 18. When she told me she pronounced the name McNees. Many years later, whe I developed more interest in family history, it was to late to ask her about it. A few years ago, I called a Menees listed in the Ft. Lauderdale phone book. He told me the original spelling was Mcnees& they came from Scotland. Later one of the brothers changed the spelling.
Seven or eight years ago, I was asking Daddy some information about the Clarks & he kept telling me he didn't know. So I said, "If the reason you're not telling me, is because Grandpa was illegitimate, I've known that for many years" He said, "I have been meaning to tell you that" I said to myself "sure you had". Anyway then he started answering my questions & that's how I got the names of the ligits & the Illigits of the Lady Bodiford.
When Grandpa Clark told mama about it, he said, before his mother's husband (a man named Clark) died, he asked her not to marry another man to bring up his children. Who knows is that's really true or just what she told him. Seems insignificate anyway. So, our Clark side is not Clark at all, but Menees.
I hav Grandpa Clark's old Bible. Aunt Nola had it in an old trunk in an abandoned house. After being there from the time Grandpa died until I asked her for it about 30 years ago - the moths had taken their toll. It's such a shame that those dates are forever gone.
There's a man in Montgomery who got in touch with me about five years ago. He has done a lot of research on the Clark family. Of course he's there & can go to the Archives anytime. His name is Wm. Prescott. I just looked for his address & can't find that either. I lose everything.
I hope this information will be helpful to you. Sorry it took so long.