Edward Payson Scott was a pioneer missionary in a head-hunting region of Assam, in northeast India. On the day he first entered the remote area of Nagas, the first twelve men who saw him drew back their spears ready to kill him. But they hesitated just long enough for Scott to pulled out his violin and begin to play “Am I a solder of the Cross.” The music-loving tribesmen lowered their spears and the missionary was permitted to proceed into the one of the darkest places on earth, preaching the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. Sadly, Scott died about a year later of cholera.
In the mean time – actually even before then – the Lord was preparing Scott’s replacement. Edward Clark had been born in New York in 1830. Christ saved him, and he graduated from Brown University in 1857. After his marriage, he and his wife moved to Logansport, Indiana, where Bro. Clark pastored and where he began to publish a successful Christian paper. In 1868 he was asked to take charge of the mission printing press in Sibsagor, the capital of Assam, India. After a long and difficult journey, the Clarks reached the mission field in 1869, the same year Edward Scott entered the Nagas territory, dying shortly thereafter. When the news of Bro. Scott’s death reached Sibsagor, the Clarks determined to take his place.
For 17 years Bro. & Mrs. Clark labored among the Ao-Nagas. In addition to preaching Christ, Bro. Clark was able to reduce the Nagas language to writing, eventually publishing a dictionary and printing the Gospels and gospel tracts. In May, 1911, he returned to America after 42 years service in India and only two furloughs.
Edward Clark was honored with three Doctor of Divinity degrees, but he considered his greatest honor just to be a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. He died on this day (March 18) in 1913 in Florida at the age of 83.