William Bailey, whose demise occurred on the 23d of December, 1892, spent the last thirty five years of his
life in honorable retirement at Utica, enjoying the competence which he had won during an active and successful
business career. His birth occurred in Utica on the 12th of March, 1818, his father being John Bailey, one of the
pioneer settlers of that city. His preliminary education, obtained in the public schools of Utica, was supplemented
by a course of study in Cazenovia Academy. In 1835 William Bailey removed to Cleveland, Ohio, where he was associated
in business with his brother, Robert Bailey. While in Cleveland he took up the study of dentistry and practiced
that profession for a brief period. During his residence in Ohio he joined the Independent Order of Odd Fellows
and was active in organizing many lodges in that state. In 1846 he returned to Utica and was engaged in the jewelry
business in association with his brothers, Thomas and James, until 1851, when he retired from the firm. Two years
later he removed to Sacramento, California, where James Bailey had established a jewelry store some time before.
William Bailey purchased an interest in the business in 1854 and remained a factor in its successful control until
1857, when he returned to Utica, spending the remainder of his life in retirement.
On the 19th of April, 1855, Mr. Bailey was united in marriage to Miss Angeline Thompson, her father being Jesse
Thompson, a prominent financier of Utica. Mr. Thompson came from Connecticut with ox teams and loads of goods,
purchasing and locating on a farm on Paris Hill. He married Irene Babbitt, also a representative of a family that
was established on Paris Hill in an early day. Their children were as follows: Milton, who is deceased; LaMott;
Mortimer G. and Jesse, both of whom have passed away; and Mrs. Bailey. The Thompsons were a prominent and highly
respected family. To Mr. and Mrs. Bailey were born three children, namely: Clark S., who is a resident of Birmingham,
Alabama; Mrs. Jessie French, of Utica; and Irene, who died a few years ago. The first district nurses' school in
Utica was founded and endowed by Mrs. Bailey in memory of her daughter Irene Thompson Bailey; directed in homeopathic
lines, it has done more good than any other institution of its kind in the state. Mr. Bailey was devotedly attached
to his family, deeming no personal sacrifice too great if it would enhance the welfare and happiness of his wife
and children. Mrs. Bailey has a host of warm friends in Utica, her many good traits of heart and mind having endeared
her to all with whom she has come in contact.
History of Oneida County, New York
From 1700 to the present time
of some of its prominent men and pioneers.
By: Henry J. Cookinham
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
Oneida County, NY
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