“Genealogical and Personal History of Western Pennsylvania” Vol. 2
Author: Jordan, John W., 1840 – 1941
BAIRD – The name BAIRD, BARD, BARDE, appears in records in various parts of Europe as early as the tenth century and extending to the fourteenth century. They appear to have migrated from Lorraine to d'Aosta in Piedmont, and from there to Normandy, finally settling in Scotland. In his “Irish Genealogy,” MacForbes claims that the BAIRDS are not Anglo-Saxon origin. His contention being that their origin is Celtic. In “Irish Pedigrees,” of which Dr. O'Hart is the author, he says: “Owen Mac an Bhaird, of Monycassen, was descended from Eocha, son of Sodhan. Mac an Bhaird was anglicized rendered the name O'Bairdam, and that in turn has been anglicized BAIRD, BARD, BARDE, BARDEN, BARDIN, BARTEN, BARTIN, BERDAN, PURDON, VERDON and WARDEN. (pg. 648) In 1066 Seigneur de Barde was among the followers of William the Conqueror. In 1178 HENRY de BARDE was a witness to a charter of lands made by King William the Lion, of Scotland. In 1191, UGONE di BARD, of the valley of d'Aosta, made allegiance to Francis I., of Savoy. He owned a castle on Bard Rock, a natural defense, and after bravely defending the place, was driven out. In 1194, HUGO de BAIRD was one of the subscribing witnesses to a safe conduct granted by King Richard I., of England, to King William the Lion, and it is said that a gentleman by the name of BAIRD saved William the Lion from a wild beast, and for this deed received large tracts of land and a coat-of-arms: A boar passant, with the motto: Dominus fecit. During the Scotch war for independence the BARDS were able supporters of the cause with Bruce and Wallace. ROBERT BARD was captured by the English, held a prisoner at Nottingham, and an order was issued, January, 1317, for his removal to the castle of Summerton, but his fate is unknown. A WILLIAM BARD was routed and taken prisoner with Sir William Douglass in 1333, in a skirmish with Sir Anthony Lacy on the English border. JORDAN BAIRD was a constant companion to the brave William Wallace from 1297 to 1305. GENERAL SIR DAVID BAIRD was a contemporary of CAPTAIN DAVID BAIRD, and held command under Sir John Moore in the peninsular campaign, and after the death and burial of Sir John, succeeded to the command and reported the victory at Corrunna. He was the son of SIR WILLIAM BAIRD, the son of SIR ROBERT, the son of JAMES, the son of GEORGE, who was living in 1588. All the BAIRDS now in America trace from these ancestors.
(I)HUGH BAIRD, who lived and died in Ayrshire, Scotland, was a mine foreman and manager at Annach Lodge, near Irvine, in Ayrshire, but his death occurred at Port Glasgow.
(II) JOHN BAIRD, son of HUGH BAIRD, was born in Ireland, but reared in Scotland. For some years after his marriage he lived at Dalrye, Scotland. He also was a miner, became a foreman, and spent the last twenty-one years of his life at Annach Lodge. He married MARGARET FLACK, born in Johnston, Scotland, died at Annach Lodge, and they had children: MARGARET, died in Scotland; ISABELLA, married ALEXANDER McNEIL, and died in Motherwell, Scotland; JEANNETTE, married WILLIAM GALBRAITH, and died in Scotland; JENNIE, widow of ROBERT WEIR, lives in McKeesport, Pa.; two who died unnamed; HUGH.
(III) HUGH (2) BAIRD, son of JOHN and MARGARET (FLACK) BAIRD, was born at Dalrye, Scotland, January 5, 1848. After his marriage he settled at Annach Lodge, where he was a mechanical engineer for about ten years, then removed to Garcorsch, where he was in the employ of the Clydesdale Iron Company and then, in 1882, came to America, and settled at McKeesport, Pa., where he was in the employ of the National Tube Company two years. Removing to Shenandoah, Pa., he worked for the LeHigh Valley Coal Company fifteen years, then returned to McKeesport, (pg. 649) and is now chief engineer of the National Tube Works. He is Republican in political matters, and he and his wife are members of the First Presbyterian Church. He is a charter member of the Scottish clans. MR. BAIRD married, in 1869, ELIZABETH CHALMERS, born in the parish of Falkirk, Polemone, Scotland, March 27, 1849. She is a daughter of WILLIAM and KATHERINE (BENNEY) CHALMERS, both born in Falkirk, Sterlingshire, Scotland. He was a superintendent of collieries for the Grangemouth Coal Company for more than thirty years, and died and is buried at Falkirk. They had children: JOHN, died in Scotland at the age of twenty-five years; JENNIE, married ALEXANDER CARR, and died in Glasgow; a child died in infancy; ELIZABETH, mentioned above as the wife of MR. BAIRD; KATHERINE, married WILLIAM ROBISON, and lives in Dumfermline, Scotland; WILLIAM, a master mechanic, died in Annapolis, Maryland; THOMAS, chief of police of the Carnegie Steel Company, lives at Clairton; MARGARET, married JOHN CRONNEY, and lives in Glasgow; ALLISON, married JOHN JARVIS, and lives in Grangemouth, Scotland. MR. and MRS. BAIRD had children: JOHN, chief shipper for the National Tube Company, lives in Lorraine, Ohio; WILLIAM, a physician, died in McKeesport in 1911; ARCHIBALD, died at the age of eighteen years; THOMAS CHALMERS, of further mention; KATHERINE, died at the age of thirteen years; HUGH, died at the age of seven years; JAMES, a clerk in a store in McKeesport; ELIZABETH, a kindergarten teacher, lives with her parents.
(IV) THOMAS CHALMERS BAIRD, son of HUGH (2) and ELIZABETH (CHALMERS) BAIRD, was born in Garcorsch, Lanarkshire, Scotland, March 1, 1876. He received his education in the elementary and high schools of Shenandoah, and at a business college, and was well equipped to engage in the battle of life. For a time he was a clerk at Packer No. 4, on the Mahanoy Division of the Lehigh Valley Coal Company, and in 1897 came to McKeesport, and was employed in a drug store for a short period. During six months he worked for Weir & McIntyre, streets and paving contractors, then became assistant accountant for the National Rolling Mill Company, remaining for two and a half years. His next position was that of assistant paymaster at the American Tin Plating Company's plant at Demmler, Pa., where he remained one year, when he was advanced to the office of paymaster, which he filled for two and a half years. One and a half years were then spent in the office of teller of the National Bank of McKeesport, after which he accepted the position of cashier at the Citizens' Bank at Braddock, and when this became merged, at the end of two and a half years, with the Braddock Trust Company, MR. BAIRD became the assistant secretary-treasurer of the latter, and held this position one and a half years. He was elected cashier of the City Bank of McKeesport, April 1, 1906, succeeding W. H. Coleman, the present clerk of courts for Allegheny County. This institution has been showing a very satisfactory rate of growth, having gained almost a quarter of a million dollar during the four years from November 1, 1909, to November 1, 1913. He is a staunch supporter of the (pg. 650) Republican party, but has never aspired to holding public office. He and his wife are members of the First Presbyterian Church, and his fraternal affiliations are with the Free and Accepted Masons, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, Scottish Clans and Knights of Pythias. MR. BAIRD married, August 5, 1897, ELLEN, born in Glasgow, Scotland, a daughter of RICHARD and ELLEN BOW, who came to America about 1880. Children: THELMA MARGARET, born December 8, 1898; THOMAS CHALMERS, JR., born October 11, 1903.
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