Table of Contents

Title Page
Captain Edward Babcock
Captain George Francis Babcock
W. I. Babcock
Frederick A. Bailey
Captain Joshua Bailey
Captain Robert N. Bailey
Captain Thomas J. Bailey
Captain A. J. Bain
Captain Isaac Guilbert Bain
Captain Edward J. Baker
Captain C. R. Baker
Captain J. Baker
James W. Baker
J. A. Baldwin
Captain T.G. Baldwin
Horatio F. Bangs
Captain G. C. Barnes
William C. Barr
Captain John Barrow
Fred B. Barrows
Captain John L. Bartlett
Peter D. Bauld
William Baumert
James W. Beach
Oscar M. Beach
Charles Beatty
Richard Beaubien
Henry Beck
William G. Beckbissinger
Captain Daniel M. Becker
G. W. Beers
Thurman E. Beers
Harvey C. Beeson
David Bell
George M. Belloir
Captain W. H. Beltz
Captain Charles E. Benham
Captain W. P. Benham
D. C. Bennett
J. C. Bennett
James Bennett
Captain Fred G. Benson
Captain John G. Betke
Captain John M. Beverly
C. F. Bielman
Frank Bingham
A. D. Birdsall
W. E. Bishop
William H. Bishop
David A. Black
William A. Black
James B. Blair
Edward R. Blanchard
Joseph R. Blanchette
H. J. Blaney
C. Blauvelt
Robert S. Blauvelt
Henry Bloecker
Captain David Blom
Captain Frank Bloom
Charles A. Bloomer
Thomas J. Bluett
Adam G. Bohland
Captain George Bohn
George M. Bohnert
Captain David Bordeaux
Henry Born
Captain William A. Boswell
Captain Benjamin Boutell
Captain Thomas T. Boyd
Captain P. Boylan
George A. Brabant
George L. Brackett
Captain Thomas J. Brady
Fred A. Bradley
William E. Bradley
M. E. Brady
William Brake
Henry Braund
Samuel H. Braund
Patrick Brennan
Captain Julius Brett
Hiram Philip R. Brey
Captain John Bridge
Thomas W. Bristow
Engineer Peter Britz
John Broderick
J. P. Brogan
Captain Charles T. Bronson
Captain George E. Brooks
James William Brooks
Captain R. H. Brooks
Captain A. J. Brown
Alexander A. Brown
Capt. C. W. Brown
Captain Charles T. Brown
Charles W. Brown
Captain Frank H. Brown
Captain George H. Brown
Captain James E. Brown
Captain John Brown
Nelson Brown
Willis Brown
Hugh Buchanan
James Buchanan
Daniel Buie
Captain Dugald Buie
Henry Bullard
William Bullock
Captain Thaddeus F. Burbank
Henry B. Burger
James V. Burke
Captain William C. Burnett
William Ritchie Burnett
David Burns
Captain George C. Burns
M. J. Burns
Captain Riley M. Burrington
Captain F. O. Burrows
A. E. Bury
Captain Thomas Bury
Charles W. Butler
E. D. Butler
Captain F. G. Butlin
John Butterworth
Corey H. Buzzard
Irvin G. Buzzard
Captain Robert L. Byers
Captain James Byers
James T. Byers
Table of Illustrations

Captain Thomas J. Bailey

Captain Thomas J. Bailey, captain of United States lighthouse station at Chicago, has in the fifty-eight years of his existence enjoyed a life that has been replete with incident, chiefly on ocean and lake navigation. From earliest recollections it was his ambition to be a sailor, and at the tender age of ten years he abandoned his home in England and ran away to sail the seas, and live his dream.

The Captain was born in Somersetshire, England, in 1840, the son of Joseph and Mary (Pickford) Bailey. The father was a farmer and native of the same country, the mother being from Witshire. Both parents lived and died in England. It was because he found at home strong opposition to his wishes to become a sailor that young Thomas stole away from his father's home and started for a seaport. He reached Portsmouth via London, and went before the mast on the school brig, serving one year. He was thence transferred to the Rosamond and later to other vessels of the English navy. For more than twenty years he was in the English navy. He served in the Crimean war, and during the Indian mutiny in Field's brigade. He served in China as chief yeoman to Admiral Hope, at which time he was boatswain. From China he went to New Zealand, and was quarterdeck officer of the vessel Cracker. From New Zealand he was transferred to Paraguay, and served through the Paraguayan war. Returning to England, Captain Bailey resigned and came to America. He reached Chicago in 1871 and located on a farm in Will county, near Joliet, and there engaged in farming. But life was not congenial, and he remained there only a short time.

Captain Bailey has been in the employ of the British and American governments most of his life. He has been connected with the lighthouse service for a great many years. For three years he was in the lifesaving service at Ludington and White Lake, Mich., and for six years he was subsequently prime keeper of the government lighthouse at Big Point Sable, Mich. From that station Captain Bailey came to Chicago in 1893 to take charge of the government lighthouse station there.

In 1874 Captain Bailey was married in Canandaigua, Mich., to Miss Mary McClure, a native of Ohio, daughter of Andrew and Elmira (Strong) McClure. Andrew McClure was born in Pennsylvania in 1811; his wife was born in Connecticut, daughter of Capt, David Strong, a sea captain and vessel owner, who sailed from Connecticut, and whose vessel was seized by the French. Captain Strong was confined to a French prison for a year, and his vessel confiscated, like many others at the time, by the French Government. When the indemnity was paid for these seizures the Strong heirs failed to receive their share. The parents of Mr. Bailey moved to Lenawee county, Mich., in 1844, and settled in Adrian. The father died in 1897, the mother in 1892, both at the age of eighty-six years. Since 1893 Captain and Mrs. Bailey have resided in Chicago. Four children have been born to them, Juliett, a stenographer; Fred L., Victor and Winfield. Captain Bailey is a member of the Evening Star Lodge No. 173, F. & A. M., at Medina, Michigan.

The lighthouse, situated at the mouth of the Chicago river, and of which Captain Bailey has charge, was established in 1859. There are six lights, as follows: One revolving light at the outer breakwater, and one lens and fog signal at the outer breakwater, one fifth- order light and lens light off the south breakwater, and one-sixth order lens and lantern on the north pier, and a fog bell stuck by clock work on the north pier. The lighthouse was built on piers in 1859, and was then all surrounded by water. There was a raised walk from lighthouse to shore, the lake having been filled since then. Originally there was only one light, which has been removed to Twin River, Wis. The present lighthouse was erected in 1859, and is one of the landmarks that escaped the fire of 1871. This is the largest lighthouse on the Great Lakes, and is among the oldest and most prominent. Captain Bailey has a crew of five assistants.


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Volume I

This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.

Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.