Tuesday, September 27, 2005

What is the ancestry of Thomas Bayles (1825-1901)?

Thomas Bayles, the father of Esther (Bayles) Mabry was born in 1825 in Virginia. We know that by 1849 he was living in Muskingum County, Ohio.

Who were his parents and how did he get to Ohio? The answers are mostly speculation at this point.

What we know:
• Thomas M. Bayles was born in February 1826 in either "Virginia" (most census listings) or "West Virginia" (death certificate).

It is possible that both birthplaces are accurate; West Virginia was founded in 1861, when the rest of the state of Virginia seceeded from the Union. So, Thomas may have been born in the state of Virginia, in one of the counties that later became part of West Virginia.

• Thomas Bayles married Leatha "Louisa" Shaffer on April 19, 1849 in Muskingum County, Ohio.

All we can learn from this is that Thomas was in Muskingum County by at least that date.

• Is Thomas the son of Aden Bayles?

When the 1840 Census was taken, an "Adin Bales" was living in Muskingum Township, Muskingum County (he is not found in the 1830 census). In the "Bales" household were 1 man age 60-69 (presumably Adin), 1 woman age 40-49 (probably his wife, possibly named Sarah). There were also 6 boys (one under age 5, two age 5-9, 1 age 10-14, 2 age 15-19) and one woman age 20-29.

The 20-29 year old woman has been identified as Aden's daughter, Ruhamah. Ruhamah (born 1818 in Frederick County, Virginia*) married David Gay Carter in Muskingum County in 1841.

I have not found any information regarding the boys in Aden's household. Our Thomas Bayles would have been 15 in 1840, so could have been one of Aden's older sons. Consistent with this idea, Thomas named one of his daughters Ruhama as well, a relatively uncommon name.

It is not clear what happened to Aden's family after 1840. Aden is not listed in the 1850 census of Muskingum County, and could have died before the census was taken. By that time Ruhamah and her husband had moved to Grant County, Indiana. Also living in Grant County were an Enoch Bayles (born 1823 in Virginia and living with Ruhamah's father-in-law) and Isaac Bayles (born about 1832 in Ohio). If Enoc h and Isaac were also sons of Aden, they would have been 17 and 8 when the 1840 census was taken; still consistent with a 15-year-old Thomas in that household.

Thomas and family are the only Bayles (Bails, Bales, etc) family in Muskingum County in 1850.

• Is there a relationship between Thomas and the Bayles family of Monongalia County, West Virginia?

There is a large Bayles family that originally settled in Long Island, New York, and later lived in Monongalia and Wetzel (formerly Tyler) counties in what is now West Virginia. A number of their descendants moved west to Ohio in the early 1800s.

There was an "Aden" (or "Hayden") Bayles in that family line that was born in 1766 in Virginia. He settled in what is now Wetzel county in 1796, where he was living as late as 1850, when he was 83. He and his wife, Peggy Ice, had at least two sons, Jesse and Aden. Jesse lived in Greene County, Pennsylvania. I haven't been able to find information about what happened to son Aden.

There were a number of Adens, Adins or Edens with the last name Bayles, Bails or Bales living in the US in the early and mid 19th century. I haven't been able to connect our Bayles family to any of them

The bottom line: I haven't found any information that connects Thomas or the Aden of Muskingum county to this or any other Bayles family.

I'm hoping that more research in Muskingum County will turn up more information about Thomas's relatives.

* Frederick County, Virginia borders on West Virginia.

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At 4:34 PM, Anonymous Barbara Ribling said...

I find this puzzle intriguing. I had long thought that Aden Bayles was a descendant of the Long Island family but now I am uncertain. I have worked on this problem on and off for many years but just cannot connect Aden to any of the Long Island families. I do hope to eventually do so or, if not, to discover who his ancestors really were.

At 4:47 PM, Blogger Peggy said...

He may well be related to the Long Island Bayles families, since they had a lot of offspring :)

But there is a big gap in the documentation and I think there have been a number of sort-of sloppy genealogies published that assume there is a link without any evidence.

I think that part of the problem is that Aden Bayles and kin lived out on what was the frontier where there just weren't that many records kept.


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