By Gordon Bailey

From the LCGS newsletter, July & September, 1997.

          It appears that Bathurst Township and its closely surrounding areas was a first point of migration for three Irish, Anglican Bailey families, whose families all later emigrated to Lambton County.

1.      SAMUEL BAILEY (c.1768-1851) was the first to arrive, settling in the area with a pension from the British Army, most likely after service in the War of 1812. He was granted lands in 1819, but probably arrived rather earlier. he is listed in one source as having arrived in 1813, and his son, John Bailey (c. 1814-1870, my gr-gr-grandfather) was born in Canada in 1814.

2.      JOHN BAILEY (c. 1773-1858), listed hereafter as elder, to distinguish him from Samuel Bailey’s son, likely arrived sometime in the 1820’s; one source lists 1828, and he bought land adjacent to Samuel Bailey’s in 1832.

3.      EDWARD BAILEY (c.1800-1867) arrived about 1830, settling in South Sherbrooke Township, near the Bathurst boundary.

          This brief will relate what is known about these three families. Sources are indicated as follows: {source}.

          The relationships between these three families is not entirely clear. However, the case for some family relationships is very strong. Descendants of Edward in Lambton recall being introduced to descendants of Robert as relatives, although the relationship was never identified {Ray Hansford, descendent of Edward Bailey}. Samuel and John elder lived on adjacent pieces of land {1851 census, land records}. John elder and Edward are both documented as having originated in County Kildare, Ireland {John elder: tombstone in Pioneer Cemetery, Perth and parish register of death, St. James Church, Perth; Edward: Ray Hansford, family records}. Samuel’s son, John, lived with John elder, and they are listed as “John Sr.” and “John Jr.” in the 1851 census. {Although this designation certainly suggests that they were father and son, other evidence, related below, indicates more clearly that John was Samuel’s son. It is more likely that John’s wife, Dorthea, was John elder’s daughter). Various possibilities are suggested.

          Samuel Bailey was born in Ireland {1842, 1851 census} and served as a gunner in the Royal Artillery, 7th Battalion {record of land grant, 1820; British military records, Public Record Office, London, ENG; correspondence relating to unpaid military pension, 1835}. He received a military service medal for service in the Royal Artillery in Martinique in 1809. This medal was issued in 1851 in Canada either to Samuel Bailey or, if deceased, to his next of kin. Samuel was granted Con.7, Lot 15, in 1820 as a member of the Rideau Military Settlement. He had completed the “prescribed term of settlement” in Dec.1819. Therefore, he certainly settled sometime before 1819. The 1842 census indicates that he arrived in Bathurst in 1813. Most members of the Rideau Military Settlement were soldiers discharged after service in Canada in the 1812-1815 war with the United States. Samuel lived on Con.7, Lot 15 with his son, Robert, until his death on 1851 April 30, having deeded half the land to Robert in 1839 and bequeathed the remainder to him on death.

          Samuel had at least two sons. In his will {instrument accompanying land record}, he notes his elder son, John, and younger son, Robert. However, the 1819 census lists Samuel’s household as consisting of Samuel and three sons, William, Samuel, and Robert. A Jane Bailey is listed and was likely Samuel’s wife. A Jane Manders is listed in the Edward Bailey family records {Ray Hansford} as having died in 1846. (Edward married Elizabeth Manders), and she was possibly his wife. No mention is made of John. However, the evidence of his will is more compelling, as errors in censuses of the time were common. No further records of “sons” William and Samuel is found. Even more compelling evidence of Samuel’s fatherhood of John is my possession of his military service medal, passed on in a continuous train of eldest sons. Further, under the naming convention of the time, John’s and Robert’s father should be named Samuel: both their first sons were named Samuel. Almost certainly, John was Samuel’s son, as was Robert (1819-1879) {various sources}.

          Anglican church records {St. James, Perth} reveal that John was married in 1838 in Perth to Dorthea (“Dolly”) Bailey (c.1809-1894). (The name is spelled both Bailey and Baily.) It seems likely, given the convention of recording the maiden name, that her maiden name was also Bailey. She was born in Ireland. They gave birth to four known children: Letitia (1840); Eliz(beth) (1843); Samuel (1845, my gr-grandfather); and John (1852). Letitia married John Cope in 1859, giving birth to Kennedy Cope in 1861. Soon thereafter, John and Letitia Cope moved to Plympton Township, Lambton County, followed by John, Dorthea and their family in 1866.

          Robert married Mary Ann Wrathall (1820-1909), a family apparently connected by marriage to several Baileys. These include Mary Elizabeth Bailey (1822-1896) {W. Clyde Bell, Wrathall family history), who married George Wrathall (1803-1894) and a John Bailey, who married Elizabeth Wrathall, George’s sister. The parentages of Mary Elizabeth and this John are not known. Robert and Mary Ann had two children who lived to adulthood: Samuel (1852-1928) and Robert George (1860-1942) {Ray Hansford, family records}. A son, John (b. c.1856) died in childhood. It is possible that there was an earlier son, Samuel (1844-1848), who died as a child {St. James Church records, Perth; Ray Hansford; family records}. Robert and Mary Ann sponsored the christening of John and Dorthea’s children. Robert and Mary Ann moved to Lambton in 1852.

          John Bailey elder is first positively recorded in Bathurst when he purchased Con.6, Lot 15, next in Samuel’s land in 1832 {land records}. He originated in County Kildare, Ireland {St. James Anglican Church, Perth}. The 1842 census records him as living on that land, having arrived in Bathurst in 1828. There is one earlier reference to a John Bailey in Bathurst. in 1821, a John is recorded on Con. 5, Lot 6. Either this is a different John Bailey or (1) the 1842 reference to an 1828 date of arrival is incorrect, and (2) the family moved between 1821 and 1842. In the 1851 census, John elder is recorded as living with John and Dorthea on Con. 7, Lot 13, which was bought in 1846. It is likely that Con. 7, Lot 13 was a homestead newly established by John and Dorthea: In 1851, only 11 acres of 200 were under cultivation, increasing to 71 acres in 1861 {1851, 1861 census}. He died on May 23, 1858, aged 85 years, and his tombstone in Perth is inscribed with the fact that John and Dorthea Bailey erected it. No will has been located.

          The 1842 census listed John elder’s household as containing four persons, two born in Canada and two in Ireland. This composition is compatible with a household consisting of 1. John Elder {Ireland}, 2. Dorthea {Ireland}, 3. John {Canada}, 4. Letitia, John and Dorthea’s first child {Canada}. It seems most likely that John and Dorthea located in John elder’s household on their marriage in 1838. Samuel, noting that John was established elsewhere, deeded half his land to his son, Robert, in 1839 to secure Robert on the land. John and John elder are referred in two places {1851 census; land records} as “John Jr.” and “John Sr.”, but John was Samuel’s son. The most likely explanation is that Dorthea was John’s daughter, but that some means of distinguishing the two Johns was necessary. As noted earlier, her maiden name was most likely Bailey, and the continuing relationship between John elder and John and Dorthea strongly suggests a filial one.

          One other feature suggests John elder as Dorthea’s father. The convention for naming sons in the 19th century was that the eldest son bore the name of the father’s father, while the second son bore the name of the mother’s father. John and Dorthea’s second son was named John.

          Edward Bailey (c.1800-1867) was born in Castledermot Parish, Kilkea, County Kildare, Ireland. In Ireland, he was trained as a hostler, training horses for the gentry. He immigrated to Canada in 1830, settling near John elder and Samuel on Con. 11, Lot 11 in South Sherbrooke Twp. (In 1851 census}. He married Elizabeth Manders (c.1802-1872), with whom he had seven children before leaving for Lambton in 1852, soon after Robert, Samuel’s son. The family thrived there, and records show over 200 descendants. Family records {Ray Hansford} record James Bailey (d.1820) as Edward’s father.

          Both John and Edward came from County Kildare. John and Samuel lived next to each other. Edward’s descendants were told they were related to Samuel’s descendants. It would beg comprehension that these three men were not related in some way.

          Samuel stands out in being born in County Tyrone, while John and Edward were born in County Kildare. However, movement between the North and South in Ireland was not unknown. Although we should not rule out some kinship between Samuel and the other two, Samuel could not be the brother of either. Moreover, it appears that John and Samuel’s children married. Although first cousins (John and Dorthea) were known to marry in frontier communities, it seems unlikely. On the other hand, it seems more than sheer coincidence that these two Baileys bought land next to other. Some kinship link seems likely, but Samuel’s closest possible relationship to John is that of cousin.

          Could James Bailey, Edward’s recorded father, be the father of both John and Edward? The likelihood is against it. Edward was significantly younger than John. Edward’s closest possible relationship to John was that of nephew or cousin.

          Reams of documents have not yet revealed the relationships of these three pioneers. Any further evidence which clarifies their relationships would be appreciated.


          An usual, but not absolute, pattern of naming sons and daughters prevailed in the British Isles from 1700 – 1875, ie:
The first son was named after the father’s father
The second son after the mother’s father
The third son after the father
The fourth son after the father’s eldest brother
The first daughter after the mother’s mother
The second daughter after the father’s mother
The third daughter after the mother
The fourth daughter after the mother’s eldest sister *
* Baxter, Angus: In search of your roots McMillan, 1978.

          The following lays out the implications of this convention were it followed in the Bailey families from Lanark.

1.The family of JOHN (1814-1870) and DORTHEA (1809-1892)
Parents of JOHN:Samuel(first son)– CORRECT
Elizabeth(second daughter)– UNLIKELY (Jane)
Parents of DORTHEA:John(second son)– VERY LIKELY
Letitia(first daughter)– UNKNOWN
2.The family of ROBERT (1819-1872) and MARY ANN WRATHALL (1820-1909)
Parents of ROBERTSamuel(first son)– CORRECT
Elizabeth(second daughter)– UNLIKELY (Jane)
Check on naming pattern:Robert(third son)– CORRECT
ROBERT’S eldest brother:William(fourth son)– POSSIBLE (1819 census)
Parents of MARY ANN:John Wrathall(second son)– UNKNOWN
Harriett(first daughter)– UNKNOWN
3.The family of EDWARD (1801-1867) and ELIZABETH MANDERS
Parents of EDWARD:William(first son)– INCORRECT (James)
?(no 2nd daughter)
Check on naming pattern:Richard(third son)– INCORRECT
(Edward apparently did not follow the naming convention with any reliability. Sometimes the patterns were disrupted by childhood deaths, but Edward did not use the name Edward until his sixth son.)
EDWARD’S eldest brother:John(fourth son)– UNKNOWN
Parents of ELIZABETH:James(second son)– UNKNOWN
?(no first daughter)

Gordon Bailey
789 West 18th Ave., Vancouver BC V5Z 1W1