daughter of Elisha Hogue &
Lydia E. VanPelt
Link to Jesse W. Baily, D.D.S., (his son)
Link to Jesse S. Baily, (his grandson)
Link to the Children of Joseph and Phebe
Also, Phebe Baily's Ancestors and Descendants
Link to the Last Will and Testament of Phebe W. Baily
This letter was among those handed down to my cousin Janet Simpson Blankenship by her grandmother, Lydia Lavinia Baily Clement, M.D., my grandfather Baily's sister. Janet has over fifty letters from our mutual great-grandfather Joseph S. Baily and others that I borrowed from her to copy and transcribe. The original below is one she let me keep.
Joseph S. Baily, M.D., was a Quaker, a surgeon, and a faithful correspondent. Here he writes from the "U.S.A. Seminary Hospital" in Columbus, Ohio. He wrote with a fine "Spensorian" style of penmanship which, combined with the antiquity of the paper, makes the letters somewhat hard to read, so the transcriptions follow each page. I think you'll find the letter an interesting read.
"My Room 1st Mo, 8/63
My Dear Wife
Yesterday afternoon Dr. Stanton** and thy most obedient went out to Camp Chase to straighten out our matters there and returned after dark with the necessary documents to make out such an inventory as I lost at home as nearly as we could. But today I concluded it (the original from which that I took home and was copied) must be there and I would find it, so I went again this afternoon and returned again after dark triumphant, having it in my pocket, and found the copy sent from home (I suppose) lying on my table. A good deal of laborious research is thus saved, and the whole matter will be more correct when completed.
About coming home, don't look for me. If I know long enough beforehand I will let thee know, and if I do not, why not let me surprise thee? I cannot come till things get fixed and started under the new regime. I do not know yet who is to take Dr. Barr's place; neither does Dave. He won't give it to Dr. Marr or Lipton and I do not know that he would give it to me; though two or three weeks ago when it was undecided whether or not Barr would leave he asked if I would like to take charge and I said no. Today I was offered a commission in the 128th which will be stationed at Johnson's Island. Must I go? However thee need not answer as it will be too late. I should have to accept to night and be ready to start...
...tomorrow. So I won't accept.
I do not know just when Lyd is coming back, but I expect second day, as Dave went home to day and will be back then. She has been sick since she went home.
Chaplain Golford had quite an accident. Thee knows he is a constant smoker. He was in his buggy the other day on his way to a funeral when he felt something burn him and found that some matches which he carried in his coat pocket had ignited and both his coats, his pants and his drawers were burned so as to be almost ruined. Let smokers take warning.
Another incident with a moral: Some time since Dr. Dury's babe was sick and...
...an officiously kind woman at the hotel persuaded
his wife in his absence that Mrs. Winslow's Soothing Sirup would
cure it and gave it a small portion. She thought it acted charmingly,
but when he came in he wanted to know what made it breathe so
hard. They got it awake with difficulty and worked with it a long
time before its drowsiness was overcome. A full dose (that given
was less than the smallest directed) might have been fatal.
How long does it take my letters to reach thee? Thine started the 1st came the 4th (First day intervening), thy last started the sixth came this eve. This will be mailed tomorrow.
About Dr. Affleck's suit I do not know. I wrote to Dr. McPherson concerning it but received no reply. The Vallandingham women have been soliciting contributions for his support. They do not come to the hospital.
**Dr. Byron Stanton, author of "The Old Stanton Clock" in Our Ancestors the Stantons. The Stantons are related to the Bailys somehow, but at this time I have not determined the connection.
March, 2002. Recieved an e-mail from a stamp collector in PA who said he'd bought an envelope that had my g-grandmother and g-grandfather's names on it and wondered if I'd like to add it to my collection of genealogical information? Well, of course I did, so he sent it to me for free! It is an envelope my great grandfather must have used for one of the letters he wrote from Camp Chase Hospital like the one above! The Internet makes the world a very small place indeed! Thanks again for the kind gesture, Mr. Stamp Collector!
We were sent for on seventh day. When I went into his room he looked up and said, "Dear mother (1) this is another blessing added to my many blessings." Then said to his wife, "Please put my arm around mother's neck, with her near my breast." Then said, "Dear mother, I thought this morning perhaps there was a change for the better as the symptoms are alike in either case. And I said to Brother (2) does thee think they are favorable symptoms?"
He replied, "No I fear not."
"Now that was honest for him to say what he thought was it not? Dear Brother he has been so much comfort to all of us in this trying time. I too soon found he was right and I then hoped I might see you again and that has been granted, and I may yet see my dear Brothers and Sisters, but if I do not see them you will, and all will be well.
"Sometimes I thought I would get well and have said, 'O my God take me not away in the midst of my days; thy years are throughout all generations.' But He saw differently and now I have thought perhaps if I get well again I might break my covenant with Him and it is all for the best. I believe I am prepared to go. I leave dear Phebe and the children very dear to me with you, believing they will be cared for. They have all been with me separately and together. Oh they are dear to me.
"Mother, I have been thinking with comfort how pleasantly we have got along together. I believe without a jam (?), Have we not?"
To which I replied, "We have had nothing to prevent good feeling that I know of."
He said, "Mother thee has done much good and I want thee not to be discouraged because thee can not see the good result. I always did love thee and doubly so since my own dear Mother was taken from us. Yet I have some things to regret: one is that I had not fixed my business so it would have been easier for Phebe, but hoped to get better so I could at least settle some matters, but now my dear Brother will see to it and care for Phebe and the dear children."
"O Hallie (3) has been such a comfort to me. Not only in my sickness but all the time so steady and truthful. And dear Herbie (4) good, too, and will be a comfort to his Mother. But Hallie being the oldest will be so much company and help to her. Dear Winnie and Jesse (6) are so dear to me--they will be cared for. Mother I never could sing, but soon the new song will be given me of Praises.
Later in the evening Winnie (5) came to him (as was her custom) to kiss him good night. As she turned to go out he said, "See here, dear, had thee thought I might not be here in the morning?" To which she replied, "Yes."
"He looked up to his Brother and (said), "Sad is it not?" His Brother replied, "Yes." "Ah, and pleasant too," said Sydenham with a smile. Then was much said at different times during the evening that I cannot now recall now (sic).
Notes: (1) "Mother" is Lydia E. Van Pelt Hirst, mother of my great-grandmother Phebe Baily. (2) "Brother" is probably George Dillwyn Baily who was a doctor in Spiceland for many years. (3) Arthur Hallam (Hallie) Baily, #2 son (4) Herbert Townsend Baily, #1 son, (5) Winnie is Lydia Lavinia Baily, his daughter. (6) Jesse is Jesse S. Baily, D.D.S., my grandfather. Jesse S. Baily, M.D., my gg grandfather,was still alive--I'm not sure where he was during this time.
Transcribed 1/12/99 by Nathan Baily, gg grandson.
Joseph S. Baily, ca 1860
(From Charles Allen Clement,
son of Lydia Baily Clement)