Jonathan Fairbanks and Clyde Edwin Tuck

Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri

Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens


CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS CLEMENTS, M. D. The man who devotes his talents and energies to the noble work of conscientiously administering to the ills and alleviating the sufferings of humanity pursues a calling which, in dignity, importance and beneficial results is second to no other. If true to his profession and earnest in his efforts to enlarge his sphere of usefulness, he is indeed a benefactor of his kind, for to him more than any other man are entrusted the safety, the comfort and in many instances the lives of those who place themselves under his care and profit by his services. Of this class of professional men was the late Dr. Christopher Columbus Clements, who stood for many years with few peers among the general practitioners of Springfield. He realized that to attain determinate success in the medical profession there must be not only given technical ability, but also a broad human sympathy which must pass from mere sentiment to be an actuating motive for helpfulness. So he dignified and honored the profession by his able and self-abnegating services. His long and useful life as one of the world's workers was one of devotion, almost consecration, to his calling.

Doctor Clements was born at Clementsville, Jackson county, Tennessee, April 8, 1838. He descended from an old Colonial American family. He was a son of Christopher Columbus Clements, who was born in Virginia in 1791, and whose family immigrated to the Old Dominion from England prior to the Revolutionary war, in which conflict they participated. Our subject's father spent his early life in Virginia, from which state he removed to Tennessee in the early settlement of that state and devoted his life to general farming. He was active in politics and held various elective offices. He was a colonel of militia and served in the Seminole Indian War in Florida. The town of Clementsville, Tennessee, was named after him, and there his death occurred, August 11, 1858, at the age of sixty-four years, his wife having died on the home farm there on September 11, 1849. He was a member of the Christian church, while she held membership in the Cumberland Presbyterian church. Mrs. Clements was known in her maidenhood as Mary Frame, a native of Tennessee, and of Scotch-Irish descent. To these parents eight children were born, six sons and two daughters, namely: Leroy S., Henderson M., Dr. Christopher C., William M., Andrew J., George W, Tabitha and Sallie.

Dr. C. C. Clements grew to manhood on his father's farm near Clementsville, Tennessee, and there he received his early education in the public schools and when a young man began the study of medicine under the preceptorship of his brother, Dr. William M. Clements, with whom he pursued his medical studies for several years, then attended the medical department of the University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky, completing his education at Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from which noted institution he was graduated with the degree of doctor of medicine. Thus well equipped for his chosen profession, he returned to Tennessee and began practice in Macon county, where he was building up a good business during the earlier years of the Civil war, and he was appointed assistant surgeon of the Second Tennessee Mounted Infantry. Later he was major and surgeon of the Fourth Tennessee Mounted Infantry, serving in such capacity until the close of the struggle. His record in the Union army is a most commendable one. His military service was mostly in the states of Tennessee, Kentucky and Mississippi. He participated in many important battles and skirmishes and was one of the surgeons who, cared for the wounded at the battle of Nashville.

Following the close of the war between the states he went to Texas, spending a year in Sherman and Paris; leaving northern Texas in the spring of 1867, he located in Springfield, Missouri, where he resided and practiced his profession continuously and with pronounced success until shortly before his death, which occurred on December 20, 1905, or during a period of thirty eight years.

Doctor Clements was married in Springfield, in 1870, to Albina Carson Parrish, a daughter of Dr. Horatio M. and Sarah J. Parrish, both natives of Warren county, Kentucky, from which state they came to Springfield, Missouri, in 1848, and here spent the rest of their lives, Doctor Parrish having been a well known pioneer physician. Two children were born to Doctor and Mrs. Clements, namely: Charles Edward, who died in infancy, and Frank Parrish Clements, who was born in Springfield and educated in this city and Chicago, and was engaged in the banking and manufacturing business in Springfield until 1903, since which time he has been engaged in business in the Southwest, although he has retained his legal residence in Springfield.

Mrs. Dr. Clements resides at the commodious family residence on East Walnut street, Springfield.

Doctor Clements was a Republican in politics. He belonged to Solomon Lodge, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Springfield. He was a member of the Grand Army of the Republic. He was a member of and one of the organizers of the Springfield Medical Society, of which he was for many years president. He was president of the Board of Health at various times, and was president of the Springfield Board of Pension Examiners. He was interested in various public enterprises. He was a patron of the leading medical periodicals of his day, and kept well abreast of the times in his profession, and he stood high not only as a physician of rare skill, but as a man of high integrity in the city of his adoption, where he passed so many years of successful practice.

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