0132. Stephen Baggage Meader (1779 - 1855) Gender: M Born: 1779
0132. Stephen Baggage Meader (1779 - 1855)
Stephen Baggage Meader, son of Samuel Meader (1745-1800)  and Ruth Hill (d.1814), was born in Barrington, NH on July 27, 1779 and died in Wells River, VT on July 3, 1855, in his 76th year. He at 14 years of age was bound to a tailor for a seven-year apprenticeship. During this period he was to receive board and clothing as pay, and at the completion of his time he was to receive a chart, a suit of clothes and his liberty. In three years he thought himself capable of cutting and making a garment, so he started for the new state of Vermont, where his sister Lydia  and her husband Joshua Otis were living. He traveled alone on foot until he reached the town of Ryegate, which had been settled by emigrants from Scotland under conditions and regulations from the Scotch Company.
Here he commenced working at his trade, going from house to house cutting and basting garments which he taught the wives and daughters to sew and make up. In this way he built up a business which in a few years brought him a large custom, and which enabled him to employ many workmen and apprentices.
In January, 1799 he married Eliza Gates, daughter of Daniel Gates and Sallie Johnson, perhaps his second wife. [This Raymon A. Meader, from whose 1953 manuscript much of this material is drawn, concludes after some discussion.] Eliza Gates' grandfather was Josiah Gates, born in Colchester, CT. On January 15, 1722, Josiah married a Miss Stevens and came to Newbury, VT very early with his sons Jacob, Jonathan and Ezra. He seems to have returned to Connecticut, as he served as a Private in Captain Levi Wells' Company, Colonel Spencer's 2nd Connecticut Regiment, in the Revolutionary War at the Siege of Boston, May 11 to December 17, 1775. He died in the Army at Orwell, VT.
Josiah Gates' father was also Josiah Gates. He was born in 1682 in Stow, Middlesex, MA. He married Grace Rathbone in 1714, they settled at Colchester, CT and had seven children.
Thomas Gates, father of Josiah, was born in 1642 and on July 6, 1670 married Elizabeth Freeman of Sudbury, MA.
Stephen Gates, father of Thomas, was the second son of Thomas Gates of Norwich, England. He came from Hingham, England to Hingham, Province of Massachusetts Bay, in 1638 in the ship "Diligent" with his wife Ann (Hill) and two children. He died in Cambridge, [MA?] in 1662.
Stephen Baggage Meader was a pensioner of the War of 1812, having served from April to September, 1813 under Captain Stewart in the U.S. Infantry at or near Burlington, VT [possibly at Fort Ethan Allen?]. When his company was discharged he was at home in Ryegate on a sick furlough. While in the Army he was detailed as a cutter of clothing, his second wife, Mary Smith Bailey, going along as his sewer.
On October 9, 1809 he married Mary Smith Bailey in Groton, VT. She was the daughter of Benjamin Bailey and Mary Smith and was born in Peacham, Vermont on May 8, 1790. She died January 24, 1872 in Groton, VT, where she was buried in the lot of her son-in-law Peter M. Paul. In her childhood she had no schooling until she was twelve, and then she paid for her own by spinning three skeins of yarn each day. She had a great desire for knowledge and at eighty years of age was said to be the best read woman in Wells River. They were married by Rev. John Bailey, evidently a relation.
In 1823 he moved his family to Wells River, five miles south of Ryegate. There were few houses obtainable in this new village, so he bought a log house as temporary home until a better one could be obtained. The log house proved to be unhealthy, and the whole family was attacked by malaria, which proved fatal in the case of the eldest daughter. The entire family was removed on beds to a new house. In 1825 the family moved nearer to the tailor shop to a house close to the mouth of the Wells River. In 1830 the river flooded and Mrs. Meader and four children were rescued by a boatman with his skiff.
In a few years Stephen Baggage Meader gave his business to his son, Alanson Smith Meader, reserving for himself the cutting of outside work. He afterward opened a shop in Groton, where he did a "tolerable" business for about three years. He died at Wells River on July 3, 1855 and was buried in the village graveyard. Thirty years later his body was moved to the New Cemetery.
1) Eliza Gates September 18, 1799. She was born in Newbury, VT probably in 1784 and died after November 30, 1811, possibly in childbirth.
The children of Stephen Meader and Eliza Gates include:
0244 i. Hiram Gibson Meader, born in Ryegate on January 20, 1800 and died May 27, 1872.
1581 ii. Eliza Meader, born in 1802 and died of malaria in Wells River September 27, 1823.
0245 iii. Louisa Meader, born in 1804 and died in 1876.
iv. Ruth Meader, born in Ryegate April 2, 1806 She died at age 12.
v. Sarah Brooks Meader [Volume I shows Sallie Meader], born in Ryegate October 28, 1809. She lived with her grandparents, Daniel Gates and Sallie Johnson, in New York State until she died at age 14.
0246 vi. Mary Ann Meader, born December 19, 1810, probably in Ryegate, and died April 17, 1866.
0247 vii. Stephen Harvey Meader, born November 30, 1811, probably in Ryegate, and died August 17, 1873.
2) Mary Smith Bailey on October 9, 1812.
The children of Stephen Meader and Mary Bailey were:
0248 viii. Sarah Maria Meader, born April 9, 1813, probably in Ryegate, and died April [or September] 12, 1903.
0249 ix. Franklin McDonough Meader, born April 3, 1815, probably in Ryegate, and died at Bangor, Maine on January 8, 1891.
0250 x. Alanson Smith Meader, born December 28, 1816, probably in Ryegate, and died July 30, 1895.
0251 xi. Nelson Bailey Meader, born November 25 [or 30], 1818, probably in Ryegate, and died in 1884.
xii. Harriet Newell Meader, born June 1, 1820, probably in Ryegate, and died March 1, 1821, also probably in Ryegate.
0252 xiii. Mary Jane Meader, born March 1, 1822, probably in Ryegate, and died February 16 [or 18], 1905.
0253 xiv. Harriet Eliza Meader, born March 20, 1824, probably in Wells River.
0254 xv. Caroline Augusta Meader, born April 9, 1826, probably in Wells River, and died, probably in West Philadelphia, Penna., on March 18, 1905.
xvi. William Eames Meader, born August [or September] 28, 1828, probably in Wells River, and was drowned in the Wells River on August 30, 1831.
xvii. Laura Ann Meader, born March 24 [or 29], 1832, probably in Wells River, and died November 3, 1839, probably also in Wells River.
xviii. Helen Juliet Meader, born May 31, 1834 and died August 12, 1834. [Another source gives the dates as May 1, 1837 and August 12, 1837.]
[Raymon Meader, Harwich Port, MA]
[Mary Jane Meader Kelly  genealogy]