Copyright © Janice Tracy, Mississippi Memories

Monday, September 1, 2008

The Balridge/Baldridge Family of Ulster, Ireland

The Baldridge family settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania around 1726 and owned land there until the early 1800's. William Baldrige was born circa 1689 in Ulster, Ireland, the son of Richard Baldrige of Wales. There is no known record of his birth. He married Janette Holmes, the daughter of James Holmes and allegedly Margaret Jane Jennings, on June 16, 1714. They became parents of six children, all born in Coleraine, County Londonderry, Ulster Province, Ireland. Names and possible dates of birth of the children were, John, 1715; Alexander, 1717; Margaret, 1719; Janette, 1721; Elizabeth, 1723; and Michael, May 1726.

Available records vary as to the date, but sometime between 1726 and 1745, the Baldrige family, except for their oldest son, John, emigrated to Little Britain Township in southern Lancaster County. Reportedly, the family arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania aboard the "Queen Margaret."

William and Janette Holmes Baldrige settled between the Octorara Creek and the eastern bank of the Susquehanna River and worked. William was a farmer, and it is believed that Janette was a weaver. Some research conducted by other Baldrige descendants indiccate they may have been members of the Little Britain Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Lancaster County and the Muddy Run Society.

At some point, Rebekah's parents, William and Margaret Clark, also emigrated from Ulster Ireland, also to Lancaster County, PA. William Clark's Last Will and Testament was executed on May 10, 1763 and filed for probate 11 days later. It is recorded in Will Book "A", Page 219, Official Records of Lancaster County. In his will, William Clark recognizes John Baldrige, his son-in-law.

William Baldrige died on November 25, 1772, in Little Britain Township, and Janette died there reportedly between 1767 and 1773. It is believed they are buried in the church's cemetery, but there are no records to prove this.

John Baldrige, who had remained in far north Ireland when his parents emigrated to America, married Rebekah Clark in 1733, in Coleraine, County Londonderry, Ireland, near where she had been born circa 1720. With three young children, John and Rebekah reportedly sailed to Pennsylvania aboard the "Village Belle," arriving there about 1737. They settled on land located in Martic township in southern Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, just a few miles from John's parents.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Janice -

    I hope you'll consider participating in an upcoming Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture. See you there!

    Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture
    Small-leaved Shamrock
    A light that shines again
    100 Years in America