Alfred J. (Job) Clancy



Submitted by Frank Butcher, updated May 11, 2007

Alfred J. (Job) Clancy, was born in South Carolina, probably in Sumter District, and moved with his parents to the Mount Ida area of Pike County, Alabama around the year 1830. He married Sarah Elizabeth Ganey of Butler County, Alabama in 1851.
A memory passed down to his granddaughter, Allie Rutherford Thomason, was Job’s recollection of the “Night the Stars Fell”, when his father and mother held his hand during what we understand now to have been a spectacular Leonid meteor shower in November of 1833.  Job was about 8 years old (according to Allie) when this event occurred.
Job served in the Civil War with the Army of Tennessee in Company C of the 57th Alabama Regiment, Infantry Division. He enlisted in February 1863, was discharged in February 1865, and received a pension as a result of a disability incurred in battle.  Job fought in the Dalton-Atlanta campaign, where his unit was cut to pieces in the Battle of Peach Tree Creek.  The 57th Alabama also suffered severe losses in the Battle of Franklin, Tennessee.  Based on the timing of his discharge, it is likely that Job’s wounds were suffered in the December, 1864 Battle of Nashville, the last aggressive action of the Western Southern Confederacy, and another battle in which the 57th Alabama had a large number of casualties.  In his pension application Job wrote that his disability was “being crippled in the foot and leg from a wound in back from bullet in War”.  Oren Clancy told the story that Job’s dog sensed him coming back from the war, and ran a mile to meet him.

When joining the Confederate Army, Job was described as a 37 year-old farmer, 5 feet 9 inches tall, with blue eyes and dark hair.

Part of a large migration out of Pike County in response to oppressive federal reconstruction policies, Job and wife, Sarah Elizabeth, came in 1869 to Texas from Alabama in a wagon, settling first in Grimes County near the community of Whitehall, then in the Honest Ridge community near Mexia in 1880, and finally at Box Church in 1887.   

His grandson, Joseph Clancy, remembered Job suffering snakebite on his big toe, a wound that left him with a crooked toe for the rest of his life.  A competing version is that Job’s toe injury was the result of frostbite suffered during the Civil War.  Job is remembered as a small man with a long beard that extended almost to his waist, and according to his cousin, Ralph, Job was a woodworker and a first class carpenter.  Allie Thomason recalled that Job repaired wagons and had a box of fine tools which came from Ireland, and that he used the tools to make coffee boxes for family members.  His granddaughter, Eva Rutherford, remembered that Job entertained everyone by playing the fiddle, and that his favorite meal was chili and rice.  
Job's application for a Confederate Veteran's Pension was signed with an 'X', indicating that he could neither read nor write, which in turn suggests that Job did not have formal schooling since he is remembered as an intelligent man.

In his later years, after his wife passed away, Job lived with his son and daughter-in-law, Wren and Janie, and their 14 children until he passed away in 1917.    Even at the age of 91, he worked on the farm daily. Job died of erysipelas, a strep infection that started around his eye and spread downward, until it seemed to circle his neck like a red handkerchief.

Kirby Hyden told a story of going into Job’s bedroom as a young boy to visit with his 90 year-old grandfather and being surprised to see that the sheet covering Job looked a bit like a tent.  Job’s “tent pole” display was in keeping with the Clancy reputation of being sexually active and fathering large numbers of children.  His sons had a reputation for being philanderers.  According to one member of the family, the boys married the “best women in the world”, but weren’t always inclined to be faithful until later in their marriages.