Recording Pioneers

Alfred Corning/Henry CLARK  1873 - 1950   arrowarrow PIONEER    PARENTS    LIFE    NOTES    LABELS    PHOTOS    THANK YOU


Alfred Corning/Henry CLARK  1873 - 1950

aka Al Clark, Alf Clark, Alfred Henry Clark, Alfred Corning(?) Clark, Alfred C. Clark, Alfred Clark, A. Clark
birth 19 Dec 1873, New York
death 16 June 1950, London
remark There is some confusion about Alfred Clark's middle name. According to the database New York, Births and Christenings, 1640-1962 (19 Dec 1873) his middle name is given as 'Alfred Henry Clark'.
But in a number of secondary publications Alfred Clark is cited as 'Alfred Corning Clark'.
I approached Patrick Feaster who kindly provided me with two very early primary sources in which the name 'Alfred Corning Clark' and 'A. C. Clark' occurs. In the 1880 US CENSUS we find 'Alfred C. Clark'.
Over the years I have come across a great many documents (EMI correspondence, passport applications and passenger lists), in which his name invariably is given as 'Alfred Clark', plain and simple. This leads one to believe that Alfred Clark himself preferred to be known as 'Alfred Clark'.
marriage (1) married on .. July 1900 in London to:
Florence Beecher CROUSE

b. 13 Nov 1878/1879, Syracuse, NY
d. ...........

In 1920 was living in Syracuse NY County with her brother Huntington B. Crouse, whose wife was also called Florence B. (Bailey?) Crouse
  • no children
marriage (2) married on 21 July 1921 in St George, Hanover Square, London, Middlesex to:
Gertrude Ivy SANDERS

b. 19 Dec 1890, Rotherham, Yorkshire, UK
d. .. Apr/May/June 1976, Westminster, London, ENGLAND [GRO 15 1854]

  • no children


father Walter Lowrie CLARK

b. 25 Oct 1841, New York City, NY
d. before 1920, ......) sewing machine agent (1880) and accountant brokersoffice (1910)

mother Mary T. ROWE

b. .. Feb 1848, New York
d. after 1920, ............

remark They got married on 26 Oct 1871, Manhattan, New York.
  • Alfred Henry

    b. 19 Dec 1873, New York
    d. 16 June 1950, London, ENGLAND

  • Mary F.

    b. .. Mar 1878, ........, Maryland
    d. ..........

  • Walter William

    b. 17 Nov 1880, Washington DC
    d. ...........

  • Mary R.

    b. .. Oct 1889, New York
    d. ............


Film (Kinetoscope Company) TTMR No. 43 (Dec 1976)
worked in Edison's laboratory from 1889
Left Edison in 1896 to join Emile Berliner

Alfred CLARK (25y) electrician
dep.: .. Jan 1899, New York, USA
arr.: 1 Feb 1899, Liverpool, ENGLAND

director of Compagnie Française du Gramophone, Paris (founded May 1899)
was in Paris from 1899 to 1909
resigned on 22 Jan 1908

1900 US CENSUS, 6 June 1900, Borough of Bronx, New York City:
Lowrie CLARK (59y) superintendant factory
Mary T. CLARK (52y)
- Alfred (26y)
- Mary F. (22y)
- Walter W. (20y)
- Mary R. (= Maud B.) (11y)

In Aug 1909 (until 1930) became Managing Director THE GRAMOPHONE COMPANY, together with Joint Managing Director Sydney W. DIXON

From 1921 to 1925 Alfred and Gertrude Ivy Clark on passengerlists

retired in Sept. 1946

Photograph in TTMR No. 25, Dec 1973, p. 7

In From Tinfoil to Stereo, pp 139-140


  • Favorite: the story of an independent German record company (1904-1914) by Hugo Strötbaum (in: The Lindström Project. Contributions to the history of the record industry / Beiträge zur Geschichte der Schallplattenindustrie. Vol. 2 (editors: Pekka Gronow & Christiane Hofer). Gesellschaft für Historische Tonträger, Wien 2010. ISBN 978-3-9500502-1-9
  • The Talking Machine Review No. 25, Dec 1973, p. 7 (Photograph)
  • From Tinfoil to Stereo, pp 139-140
  • Forty Years of the Gramophone by Alfred Clark, Managing Director of The Gramophone Co. (interview with picture in: The Gramophone of Dec 1929 (pp 290-292))
  • Editorial by Compton Mackenzie (in: The Gramophone of Jan 1930)
  • Alfred Clark As a Film Pioneer (in The Talking Machine Review No. 43 of Dec 1976, pp. 864-865)
  • He Was a Man - Alfred Clark: Dec. 19th, 1873 - June 16th, 1950 (with picture) by F. W. Gaisberg (in: The Gramophone of Aug 1950)
  • Patent application of Eldridge R. Johnson and Alfred Corning Clark for "Sound Recording and Reproducing Devices". It was issued on August 7, 1900 as No. 655,556 (Footnote #15 in "The American Graphophone Company and the Columbia Phonograph Company enter the disc record business, 1897-1903" by Raymond R. Wile (in: ARSC Journal, Vol. 22, No. 2, Fall 1991))
  • Susan Conklin = Arthur Clark's great-niece (internet)
  • The Launching of the Gramophone in America 1890-1896 by Raymond R. Wile (in: ARSC Journal Vol. 24, No. 2 of Fall 1993) online article
  • Alfred Clark's unpublished memoir His Master's Voice: A Record (probably in EMI archives)
  • Clark, Alfred Corning (1873–1950), record and electrical goods manufacturer by Peter Martland (in: Oxford Dictionary of Biography) online article




Leslie Gage
Michael Lloyd-Davies
Patrick Feaster
Maria Kapkidi (co-researcher RP)