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Isaac R. Clark Memorial collection

 Collection — Box: 1-34
Identifier: 0000-0000-0000-0117

Scope and contents

The Isaac R. Clark Memorial collection spans the years between 1946 and 1990. The bulk of the collection dates from 1962 to 1989, and documents his twenty-eight year tenure as a professor of homiletics at the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta. These papers include detailed information about his administrative duties including, material regarding his faculty committee work and his time as registrar and director of the summer session at ITC.

This collection offers significant information about Dr. Clark's homiletics courses; including specific course material, handwritten outlines, class syllabi, assignments, correspondence, and student papers. Also included, are personal papers, writings by Clark, ITC memorabilia and programs, and an audio visual component. The reel to reel audio tapes in the collection contain a record of student sermons, lectures, ITC conferences, speakers, ITC chapel services, religious music, and class lectures.


  • Creation: 1946-1990
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1960-1989


Access restrictions

Student files and grade reports located in the Administrative files series and the Teaching materials series are restricted papers and not available for review unless the individual has granted permission to the researcher.

Rights Statement

All materials in this collection are either protected by copyright and/or are the property of the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc., and/or the copyright holder as appropriate. For more information, please contact

Biographical note

Dr. Isaac Rufus Clark (1925-1990), the son of Reverend James H. and Lillian Clark was born February 15, 1925 in New Castle, Pennsylvania. He graduated from New Castle public schools in 1943. After graduation, Clark served in the U.S. Navy until 1946.

He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Wilberforce University in 1951, and in 1952, he received his Bachelor of Divinity degree from Payne Theological Seminary. Dr. Clark went on to receive his Ph.D. in Theology from Boston University in 1958, after successfully defending his dissertation, Redemption in the Thought of Albert Knudsen and Emil Brunner.

Isaac Clark was a lifelong member of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. He made public his call to the ministry in 1946, and in 1952 he was ordained as an elder. He served pastorates in Milford, Ohio, and in Lynn and New Bedford, Massachusetts.

In 1955, Clark became Professor of Systematic Theology at Payne Theological Seminary, then in 1960 he became the Dean of the College and Professor of Religion and Philosophy at Paul Quinn College in Waco, Texas. In 1962, Dr. Clark joined the faculty at the Interdenominational Theological Center as Professor of Homiletics and Director of Field Education. During his twenty-eight tenure as a professor, he also served as registrar (1969-1975) and director of the summer session.

In recognition of his contributions as a professor and scholar, in 1975 he was chosen to be the first Fuller E. Callaway Professor of Homiletics at the Interdenominational Theological Center which he held until his death.

Isaac married Betty Jane Watkins Clark, principal of Towns Elementary School in Atlanta, Georgia. The Clarks had two children, Isaac Rufus Clark, Jr. and Karen Elaine Clark Austin.

Isaac Rufus Clark died on January 18, 1990 of cancer at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Home at the age of 64.


21.5 Linear feet

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged into five series: Personal papers, Administrative files, Teaching materials, Printed materials, and Audio-Visual materials.

Processing Information

The Atlanta University Center Robert W. Woodruff Library acknowledges the generous support of the National Endowment for Humanities - Humanities Collections and Reference Resources Implementation Project Grant in supporting the processing and digitization of a number of its major archival collections as part of the project: Spreading the Word: Expanding Access to African American Religious Archival Collections at the Atlanta University Center Robert W. Woodruff Library

Isaac R. Clark Memorial collection, 1946-1990
Finding Aid prepared by Sarah Tanner, 2014
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc. Repository


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