Collector’s Stories: Loring Woart Bailey (1839-1925)

Specimen collected by L.W. Bailey in Fredericton in 1867.

Loring Woart Bailey (1839-1925)

L. W. Bailey was born in West Point, New York on September 28th, 1839 to Jacob Whitman Bailey and Maria Slaughter. His father was a professor of chemistry, geology, and mineralogy at the United States Military Academy, located in West Point. L.W. Bailey attended school in Maryland and Rhode Island previous to attending Harvard University and later on Brown University. He came to Kings College (UNB), in 1861 to take up the position of professor of chemistry and natural sciences after the death of his predecessor, James Robb. Two years later, he married Laurestine Marie Marshall d’Avray and they had seven children; five sons and two daughters.

While teaching at the university, Bailey took many trips around the province as well as in Maine. His 1864 article “Notes on the geology and botany of New Brunswick,” in the journal, The Canadian Naturalist, contains information from some of his trips as well as the names and location of what he found. When Bailey began teaching at the University of New Brunswick, he was responsible for teaching botany, chemistry, geology, physics, and zoology, but after 1900 he focused more on courses in biology and geology.

He was a very dedicated professor and taught at the University of New Brunswick for 46 years before retiring. After a long life, Bailey passed away at the age of 85. His final resting place is the Forest Hill Cemetery in Fredericton.

L. W. Bailey was not only the author of numerous articles, but textbooks as well. One textbook that he wrote was “Elementary Natural History: An Introduction to the Study of Minerals, Plants, and Animals with Special Reference to New Brunswick.” Clearly, it includes the subjects of minerals, plants, and animals, but it is also designed to cater to those who are not necessarily advanced scholars.

Natural History Textbook by L.W.Bailey, 1887

For further information regarding his life, refer to the book “Loring Woart Bailey: The Story of a Man of Science,” written by Joseph Whitman Bailey or to the Bailey Family collection as well as his own collection at the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick.

    By Jillian Richard, UNB 2017

* The herbarium holds approximately 220 specimens collected by L.W. Bailey.

Author: UNB Herbarium

Vascular Plant Collection at University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, New Brunswick

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