An American Family History


The Bayless Family

  also spelled Bayles, Bayliss, Bailes  

Daniel Bayless was born on December 15, 1716 in Jamaica, Long Island, Queen's County, New York.

He married Johanna Lake on January 17, 1735.

Daniel Bayless, Jr. (1737),
Phoebe Bayless,
Martena Bayless,
Abigail Bayless,
John Bayless (1746, married Anna Price),
Elias Bayless,
Samuel Bayless (1751, married Mary Nodding),
Reuben Bayless (1754, married Sarah Lucas), and
Hezekiah Bayless.

The family moved to Washington County, Tennessee (was North Carolina).

Washington County, Tennessee 1788/89 Deed of conveyance Reubin Bayless to James Keele, 121A, pbo Samuel Wood

They were members of the Cherokee Baptist church.

Daniel, John, Elias, Samuel G., and Reuben fought in the Revolutionary War.

Daniel died on June 1, 1800 in Washington County, Tennessee.



John Bayless was born on November 25, 1746. He was the son of Daniel Bayless and Johanna Lake.

He married Anna Price, the daughter of John Price and Sarah Harrelson.

Morgan Bayless,
Daniel Bayless,
John Bayless,
Reuben Bayless,
George Bayless,
Martina Bayless,
Ann Bayless,
Hezekiah Bayless,
Samuel Bayless,
Reese M. Bayless,

John died in February, 1823 in Washington County, Tennessee


Samuel Bayless was born on April 11, 1751 in Kingston County, New Jersey. His parents were Daniel Bayless and Johanna Lake.

He married Mary Nodding on January 16, 1774 in Loudoun County, Virginia.

William Bayless (1774, married Catherine Jane Haire),
Daniel Bayless
Mary Bayless
John Bayless (1780, married Sarah Hawkins and Sarah Gordon),
Alice Bayless
Samuel Bayless
Hannah Bayles
Reuben Bayless
Pboebe Bayless
Martena Bayless (1791, married Thomas Hunt son of Uriah Hunt),
Hezekiah Bayless
Alexander Bayless

1795 in Washington County Deed of Conveyance
John Hunter to Samuel Bayless, 100A, pbo William Bayless
John Lemmon to Samuel Bayless, 100A, pbo William Bayless

Samuel died on August 14, 1825 in Washington County, Tennessee.




Reuben Bayless was born about 1754.

He married Margaret Lucas on March 5, 1778 in Cecil County, Virginia

George Bayless,
Ann Bayless,
Mary Bayless,
John Bayless,
Hannah Bayless,
Margaret (Peggy) Bayless,
Zethia (Luthy) Bayless, and
Elizabeth Bayless.

Reuben and Margaret moved to Washington County where all of their children were born.

All of the children were born in Washington County.

In 1816 Reuben and Daniel signed

. . . The petition of William P. Chester to your worships respectfully sheweth that he is now about to build iron works in Bumpus Cove [just south of Jonesborough]. . .prays your worship to grant him a Jury of view to lay off . . . [3,000 acres].

Reuben died in 1826 and Margaret in 1828, and both are buried in Cherokee Baptist Church cemetery.






from Sketches of  Tennessee's Pioneer Baptist Preachers by J. J. Burnett

Here in the shadow of the old Cherokee church, on Cherokee Creek, Washington County, I am standing  on historic ground, listening to the silence that broods over the cemetery where I meditate. The church has been in existence since 1783; has outlived two meeting houses, and for years has been worshiping in a third. The old church book (preserved from the beginning) and tombstones show some interesting records. I find in the cemetery a  stone erected to the member of "Rev. Rees Bayless; born August 22, 1787; died October 29, 1864; more than fifty years a Baptist preacher"; and another erected to the memory of his grandfather, "Daniel Bayless who died in the year 1800." He also sleeps the dust of Elder John Bayless, father of Rees, and once a minister of the Cherokee Church. In its long list of member the church record shows seven generations of the Baylesses, among them three generations of Baptist preachers.

The subject of our sketch [Rees Bayless] was born on Cherokee Creek, Washington County, Tennessee, four miles south of Jonesboro. On the paternal side he was of sturdy English stock, his grandfather, Daniel [Bayless], having emigrated from England more than a century and a half ago, settling first in Pennsylvania, afterwards locating in Washington County, Tennessee, with his three sons, Samuel, John and Reuben. In the large family connection are a number of interesting land "grants," made to the older Baylesses before Tennessee became a State.

Elder Bayless was converted in his youth, and uniting with the Cherokee Church, was baptized, most likely, by Jonathan Mulkey, a preacher of pioneer fame. He was married May 17, 1804, to Margaret Young, who became the mother of his six children, five daughters and one son. In August of 1828 he was married a second time, to the widow Elizabeth McPherin. In 1810 the Cherokee Church licensed him to preach, and in 1820 ordained him. He became pastor of this, his home church, in June, 1827, and continued pastor for more than a quarter of a century. He was also pastor of Buffalo Ridge, Sinking Creek, Indian Creek (now Erwin), Limestone, and other church of the Holston Association. For many year he was a leader in this, the oldest association in the State, and was its Moderator for twenty-two years.

He was a prominent figure among East Tennessee Baptists and influential in the councils of his brethren. His judgment was deferred to and his advice had weight with the churches.   At a meeting of "representatives" of the Holston, Tennessee, Nolachucky and East Tennessee associations, held August 25-26, 1843, at Pleasant Grove Church, Cocke County, for the purpose of adjusting doctrinal differences in regard to "election," "free salvation," etc., and to secure, if possible, a  basis of union and co-operation in mission work, Elder Rees Bayless was chosen Moderator of the convention, and to his wise counsel and conservative being was due, largely, the substantial adoption of the New Hampshire Confession of Faith and a resolution to co-operate in the work of missions...

The Nolichucky River flows through Western North Carolina and East Tennessee. It is a tributary of the French Broad River. During the 1770s, European Americans established the "Nolichucky settlements" in what is now Greene County, Tennessee.

The Village Messenger 
Fayetteville, Tennessee
06 Oct 1824, Wed  •  Page 2



Colonial Maryland
Colonial New England
Colonial Virginia & West Virginia
Quakers & Mennonites
New Jersey Baptists
German Lutherans
Watauga Settlement
Pennsylvania Pioneers
Midwest Pioneers
Jewish Immigrants

©Roberta Tuller 2019
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