Rachel Idlette Holt Clark was born April 2, 1890, in Sumter County, Georgia. In 1912, Rachel married Jack Clark, and in the 1920s they moved to Archery to work for Earl Carter.
The small tenant house the Clarks lived in was just past the Carter’s vegetable garden. They lived on a path young Jimmy Carter traveled often. He spent a lot of time with the Clarks and often asked to spend the night with them when his parents were out of town. The Clarks kept a sleeping pallet filled with either corn shucks or wheat straw, which Jimmy would sleep on.
Young Jimmy spent time working on the farm beside Jack and Rachel. Their days began at 4:00 a.m., hoeing weeds, stacking peanuts, picking cotton, and caring for the Carter’s farm animals. Although farm life was hard work, Jimmy and Rachel would find time to go fishing in the nearby creek. On the walk to the creek, Rachel would tell Jimmy stories about life’s lessons and would share with him her words of wisdom. these words stayed with him all of his life.
In President Carter’s recent book, An Hour Before Daylight, he stated, “Of all the people who lived near us on the farm, Rachel Clark was the most remarkable and made the most significant and lasting impact on me.” Rachel Clark leaves a legacy of goodness in the little community of Archery and Plains, as people remember her words of encouragement, telling them to always to the thing that was right.