BLUEFIELD — Bluefield native Robert E. Bailey now resides in Selbyville, Del. but a question from his granddaughter prompted him to research, find out more about his ancestry and write about it.
Bailey said a year ago his granddaughter asked him where he was from and set him on a search for Richard Bailey, the pioneer.
Bailey is a seventh-generation direct descendant of Richard Bailey. He graduated from Bluefield High School, Concord University and the University of Missouri. He retired in 2012.
Since then, Robert Bailey, a self-described “amateur history reader of the colonial period,” has been fascinated by the colonial period. He and his wife, Carole, have visited many battlefields of the Revolutionary War and added 100 books to their library on the colonial period and the Revolutionary War. He is especially interested in books about the Founding Fathers.
“I hope I have written a factual narrative and summary of the Richard Bailey Family in Southern West Virginia for over 400 years using the “Richard Bailey” four volumes authored by Mary Ellen Howe,” Bailey said.
Mary Ellen Howe wrote four books on the Bailey family over a 40-year period. Robert Bailey owned all four volumes but had yet to study them until this venture. He said he could not have started or finished his notebook without the help of Howe’s work.
“I first met her when I attended the 2017 reunion and was immediately impressed,” Bailey said. “She had a great technical team assisting her and she is an excellent researcher in her own right.”
Bailey has completed his notebook, “The Richard Bailey Story,” a factual narrative and summary of Howe’s books which covers the history of the Bailey family back to Jamestown, Va. in 1610.
The “Richard Bailey Notebook” is 5,000 words and 70 pages long. Bailey plans to sell the Notebook at the Bailey family reunion for $10 and at the Mercer County Historical Society for $15. All proceeds from sales will go to the Mercer County Historical Society.
“By writing this story, I hope to keep the Richard Bailey legacy alive,” Bailey said.
The Bailey Family Reunion will be held at Glenwood Park on Sunday July 14.
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