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Edgar L. McClendson

Cleveland County is proud to number among her native sons Edgar L. McLendon, circuit, county, chancery and probate clerk, with residence at Rison.

He was born five miles west of Rison on the 7th of July, 1879, a son of Lee and Maxie (John) McLendon, both of whom are living. On the paternal side he is of Scotch-Irish descent, members of the family having come to America at an early day, settling in Georgia. The maternal family is American for many generations back. Lee McLendon was born in Georgia and came to Arkansas with his parents, when a boy of twelve or thirteen years.

They were among the early settlers of Cleveland county, locating on land some twelve miles east of Rison. There Lee McLendon was reared to young manhood. Upon the outbreak of the Civil War he put all personal interests aside and enlisted in Company G, First Arkansas Cavalry, with which he served throughout the conflict, participating in many of the strategic battles of that war.

Mr. Lee McLendon married Miss Maxie John, who is now in her seventy-fourth year. She was likewise born in Georgia, coming to this state with her parents as a girl of twelve years. The Johns located fifteen miles east of Rison and were among the pioneers at that point. Mrs. McLendon had one brother , Joe John, who served in the Civil war from Arkansas and was killed in active service.

To the union of Mr. and Mrs. McLendon eight children were born, five boys and three girls, all of whom are living.

Edgar L., whose name initiates this review, was the sixth in order of birth.

In the acquirement of his education Edgar L. McLendon attended the common schools of Cleveland county, near Rison, and remained on the parental farm until he was twenty-one years of age. He then started farming on his own account, purchasing a farm five miles west of Rison and he lived thereon until 1912.

In 1911 he was elected county treasurer and the following year removed to Rison, taking over the duties of that office. He served six years in that connection and in 1918 was elected circuit clerk of Cleveland county, that office including the duties of county, probate and chancery clerk. He became the incumbent in that office January, 1919, and is now serving his second term in that capacity. He believes every public office to be a public trust and ever discharges the duties devolving upon him to the best of his ability.

On the 27th of February, 1902, near Pine Bluff, this state, occurred the marriage of Mr. McLendon to Miss Delector Rhodes, a daughter of R.B. Rhodes, a well known farmer of Cleveland county, residing ten miles northwest of Rison. To their union three children were born, two girls and one boy: Jewel is now the wife of Russell Hawkins of Mississippi. They are residing in Pine Bluff, where Mr. Hawkins is mechanic for the S.R. Thomas Automobile Company; Lillian, who is fifteen years of age, is a freshman in the Pine Bluff high school; and Leon, thirteen years of age, is a student in the Rison public schools.

Mrs. McLendon died on the 11th of June, 1918, in her thirty-second year, and her death came as a severe shock to her family and many friends. She was a woman of much culture and refinement and had for many years been a leader in the social circles of this community.

The religious faith of Mr. McLendon is that of the Methodist Episcopal church, South, of which he is a steward. Fraternally he is identified with the Woodmen of the World, Crumps Camp, No. 89, of Rison and with Rison Lodge, No. 182, Independent Order of Odd Fellows.

During the World war Mr. McLendon gave generously of his time and Money in the furtherance of the government’s interests and was not only active as associate member of the legal advisory board of Cleveland county but took a prominent part in all drives. He is one of Cleveland county’s most progressive and public-spirited citizens. He has been a dominant factor in the upbuilding of the town and county and his many sterling traits of character have won for him the confidence and respect of all his fellowmen.


Submitted by Belinda (Brown) Winston