Sunday, June 22, 2008

Cousin Jimmy Discovers Descendants of Uncle Volley Bailey

On June 2, 2008, my cousin Jimmy Rogers announced on the Thornton Family’s website at, that he had found the descendants of our Uncle Volley Bailey. A few days later I found the death certificates of our ancestor Matilda Bailey Thornton (1856-1916) on Uncle Volley was a brother of our ancestor Matilda and we had reached a brick wall in finding her family’s whereabouts after 1870. Since Cousin Jimmy’s discovery, I have revisited my research on the Bailey family and have made numerous discoveries.

Cousin Jimmy learned that Uncle Volley left North Carolina and moved to Richmond, Virginia where he worked as an Insurance man. Through his contacts from Uncle Volley’s family, he gathered names and some birthdates. Using this information that Cousin Jimmy found, I have found several documents on the life of Uncle Volley. The first thing I used was the census which gave me clues for further research. I already had a copy of the 1870 census which listed Uncle Volley at age 10 living in the household of Josephine Bailey. For years, I could not understand the spelling of Uncle Volley’s name on the census. I thought that it was “Vibby” and I put it in my Family Tree Maker database as “Vibby?” However, after carefully looking at the letters again, I see that what I thought were the letters “b” were actually the letters “l”.

Because family relationships are not listed on the 1870 census, we were not sure if any of the children listed in the household belonged to Josephine Bailey. Since there is a 12-year age difference been the ages of Josephine and our ancestor Matilda, we assumed that Josephine might be an older sister or some other relative. However the death certificate of Matilda names Samuel and Caroline Bailey as her parents. There is a 20-year age difference between Josephine and Volley so it possible that she was mother. Research findings within the last few weeks are bringing clarity to the history of the Bailey family.

1870 Census, Formosa Township (Brinkleyville) of Halifax County, NC

To Be Continued. . .

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