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John and William Bailey were the sons of William S. and Elizabeth Bailey were were married in New Brunswick in 1820. The father was a shoemaker by trade and died in 1838 at the age of 46, due to complications from his injuries from a scaffolding accident. He was survived by his wife and children.
John Bailey was a merchant in Saint John in 1849. He apparently specialized in flour of several types and cornmeal as he regularly received shipments by sea from Philadelphia and New York. In October 1849, John made what appears to be a sudden decision to leave for California, probably to join the Gold Rush. He signed over power of attorney to settle his business to his brother, William, a printer in Saint John. Several lots of land were also signed over to William. John Bailey died on 13 June 1860 at his residence on Orange Street. His death was listed as inflammation of the lungs.
William S. Bailey was apprenticed to Henry Sancton, a printer in Saint John in 1839 for a period of 5 years by his mother and guardian Elizabeth Bailey. As part of his apprenticeship, William worked in Saint John on the "Herald", a Henry Sancton publication in 1844 and in Fredericton, at the "Reporter" [184?]. He married Mary Elizabeth Williams in 1846 and they had 10 children, Margaret, Isabell, William, Rachael, Jane L., Lora E., Louisa, Maud, Charlotte, and Emily. During his career as a printer, William appears to have collaborated with a prominent Saint John printer, George W. Day, on occasion. Bailey is listed as a co-publisher of the "Saint John Mail", published 1847-1848.
Sources: "McAlpines Saint John City Directory," 1863-1864; Census 1851, 1861, 1871; Harper, J. Russell, Historical Directory of New Brunswick Newspapers and Periodicals