Friday, October 10, 2014

Little House on the Prairie

As frequently happens, if I buy more than one old photo at a time from the same vendor, I am very likely to discover a relationship between the photos.  This isn't hard to understand since so many of these kinds of things are acquired from estate sales, with whole piles of photos originating from the same box in the same house.

Today's photo has a connection with the previous post Cedar Circle Place.  Cedar Circle Place referred to a house in Illinois, while this photo documents a family who lived in Madison, Riley County, Kansas.  The two families were related by marriage.

As was the case with the Cedar Circle Place photo, someone had taken the trouble to identify every person in this photo:

Home of M. Z. Baird (Uncle Zach)
M. Z. Baird, Maude, Rosa Baird (Aunt Rosie)
Wallace (by the team)
Roy and Bennie in front

The photo is badly faded and was difficult to enhance, but I finally was able to pull out the various figures referred to.  Based on the children's appearances and the census records, my best guess is that this photo dates to the early 1890s.

I wasn't as lucky this time with my research.  The Baird family seems to follow the same path as my own ancestors - live quietly and leave few traces behind.

But, I was able to flesh out the picture a wee bit with a handful of family trees posted to Ancestry and census records.

M. Z. Baird was Marion Zachary Taylor Baird, son of William Van Dorn Baird and wife Maria (Ouderkirk).  He was born in New York, but by the 1870 census the family had relocated to Kankakee County, Illinois.  Zach's brother Alexander would marry Francena Loretta Barnard in 1872, she being one of the daughters of the Barnards of Cedar Circle Place.

In 1876, Zach married Rosa A. Baxter, daughter of Benjamin and Mary Ann (Burnett) Baxter.  The couple had four children: Maude Maria born 1877, William Wallace born 1878, Benjamin Baxter born 1884 and Robert Roy born 1887.  This photograph captures the entire family.

The M. Z. Baird family moved from Illinois to Kansas between Wallace's birth in 1878 and Benjamin's birth in 1884.  They settled in Riley County, Kansas.  At the time of the 1900 census the couple had been married 24 years.

A year after the census, Rosa died in 1901.  Zach lived on to age 92 and died in 1940.  They are buried in Milford Cemetery in Geary County, Kansas.


1 comment:

  1. Ian a distant relation to this family. I have letters from maud Baird sent to my grandmother. Mary baxter(nee Burnett) is my great grandmothers sister. The baxters moved to usa from gosberton Lincolnshire and met the bairds in Illinois and then moved to Riley Kansas. My grandfather went to the ranch in Kansas to work for a few years when Ben Baxter son alfred took over. The Baird were in the area. I have other info, but would love photos etc as I have been doing thr family history. I understand as I live in England you might like these to stay in the usa, but I am hopeful thanks carole wheatcroft