Thursday, Feb 02, 2023

Lorin Bailey

Lorin Bailey and Claribel Bolingbroke

Lorin Hawkins Bailey was born 16 August 1888, in Wellsville, Cache, Utah to English immigrant parents Charles Ramsden Bailey and Susannah Hawkins.  He was the youngest of fourteen full siblings, and because his father practiced polygamy, eventually had sixteen half siblings.

Lorin came to Arbon because his eldest brother James had homesteaded there. Eventually several Bailey brothers came from Wellsville to Arbon, including Charles, Lorenzo, William, Parley, Willard, and Cyrus.

Lorin Bailey had the first contract with the US government between Arbon and Pocatello – previous to that, the mail route came from Malad, Idaho over Rocky Ridge (near the Andersen holdings). Lorin provided mail service to the valley three days a week.  That doesn’t sound like much today, but at that time it took a full day to go to Pocatello, and another full day to come back.  So for six days a week, he spent a lot of time looking at the south end of his north-bound team (or vice versa), traveling to and from Pocatello, over Mink Creek Pass. Post offices were located at Crystal (where Twain and Michelle Hayden now live – their lovely modern home is actually remodeled from the original Crystal Post Office and store), Pauline (close to where the elementary school now is), and then Arbon (close to where the LDS church building now is).  The Star Route contract ran for twenty months, after which someone else other than Lorin took it over.  Many farmers sent their cream, butter, and eggs to Pocatello to sell, and had to send it via the post office’s buckboard, so the cost of freighting also helped with his salary.

He married Claribel Bolingbroke 22 December 1909 in Logan, Cache, Utah.  She was the daughter of Charles Bolingbroke and Margaret Roberts Bolingbroke of Malad and Arbon (in the Pauline area).

Lorin and Claribel had five children, only three of whom lived to adulthood:

Eldon B. Bailey, 1910, born in Wellsville, died 1912 in Arbon

Elizabeth Roberts Bailey, born 1912, in Malad

Thora Bolingbrook Bailey, born 1914, in Arbon

Margaret Bailey, born 1917, in Arbon

Wanda F. Bailey, born 1922, in Pocatello; died 1923

Lorin proved up on his homestead in 1913. His 160 acres were a mile north of his eldest brother’s land, James Bailey, while their home was east of James’ eldest daughter (Lorin’s niece) Jennie Bailey Gibbons.  The families drilled a well on the section line between them, which pulled water up by use of a windmill. This well provided water to the several families, and was a welcome change from having to haul water in fifty-gallon drums from a spring several miles away.

Like other Arbon homesteaders, this family saw its share of sorrow.  When Lorin and Claribel’s firstborn, Eldon, was a toddler, he followed his father out in the farmyard and got kicked in the head by one of the work horses. His parents were able to get him to a hospital, then to the hospital in Salt Lake City, but he died during the medical operation performed in order to save him.  He was buried in Malad, Idaho.

Another tragedy was when Lorin and Clarabel’s youngest child, Wanda, was eleven months old. She developed whooping cough and pneumonia.  She died on 19 August 1923 and was buried in Malad, next to her eldest brother, Eldon.

Despite the tragedies, there were good times too. The family had built a home in Pauline in 1918, which they later sold to Vern Munn in 1922 (this is the little house between Stu and Judy Adams, and Barry and Valerie Williams’ homes today). Elizabeth, the oldest living child, remembers that she attended school in the log building call Valley View (near the LDS Church today) and also in Pauline at the northern end of the valley. She had a pet pig for a playmate that loved to have its back scratched. The Evans family down the road had a donkey that the children loved to climb on all at once and try to ride. However, the donkey would usually just sit down.

The family lived in Arbon and farmed until 1922, when they moved to Pocatello so the children could attend high school.

Claribel died on 7 May 1977 in Pocatello. She was buried at the Mountainview Cemetery. Lorin lived another ten years, passing away on 25 January 1987.  He too was buried in the Mountainview Cemetery.


Ward, Laurie Jean, Bannock Valley (Providence, Utah; Keith Watkins and Sons, 1982).

These links will provide links to other family members.