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Emma S. Clark

Born: October 3, 1836, England
August 2, 1889, Setauket, New York

Emma S. Clark

Brief Biography: Little is known of Emma Clark’s earliest years, except for the fact that she and her sister, Annie, were orphaned at an early age. They came to live in the United States with their uncle, Thomas Hodgkins, who saw to the girls’ upbringing and education. In the 1870s, Hodgkins took his nieces on a trip to Paris, where Annie met and eventually married a Swiss man named Bills. Emma never married and remained at Hodgkins’ Brambletye Farm in Setauket as long as she lived. She cared for her uncle, as well as for her sister Annie and niece Emma Clark Bills, both of whom had returned to live at Brambletye Farm following Annie’s divorce. Emma Clark died in 1889 at the age of 52 and is buried in the churchyard of the Caroline Church in Setauket, across the street from the library that bears her name.


Our neighbor and friend, Mr. Thomas G. Hodgkins, has erected this building and dedicated it to the purpose of a library, as a memorial to his lamented niece, the late Miss Emma S. Clark. In doing this it has been his purpose to perpetuate the memory of a good woman, among the people with whom she dealt in kindly and helpful relations for nearly a quarter of a century, by an institution of a useful, benevolent and elevating character, which shall be a means of pleasure and culture for all time to come.” – John Elderkin, editor, publisher, and member of the Library Board of Trustees, at the dedication of the Emma S. Clark Memorial Library, October 3, 1892.