Biography of Luther Chapin Bailey

During his residence at Topeka since 1889 Mr. Bailey had developed a large insurance business, had been a citizen in whom public spirit is one of the most important qualities, and to his many personal friends is known as a man of charming sociability and of exceptional interest.

He was born near Waynetown, Indiana, September 23, 1866, a son of Horatio Jackson Bailey and Leah Jane (Gartrell) Bailey, his wife. His great-grandfather, George Bailey, was a Scotchman, and married a Scotch woman from North Ireland. He migrated to the State of Delaware and settled on Chesapeake Bay, and here at this home the grandfather, Horatio Bailey, was born. This Horatio Bailey was a soldier in the War of 1812, and married Sarah Ann Hearst. The Hearst family was a numerous one, living on Chesapeake Bay, in the State of Delaware. Many of them followed the sea, and George Hearst, the great-grandfather, was privateersman in the war of the Revolution, and earned distinction for valorous service.

Horatio Jackson Bailey, father of the Topeka citizen, was a minister, having removed to Indiana from Ohio. His wife, Leah Jane Gartrell, was descended from a French Huguenot family that long lived in Virginia. The Gartrells were among the first families of Virginia, were planters on a large scale and before the war owned many slaves. The Gartrells came into Virginia from the southern French settlements in America, probably from Georgia or the Carolinas. Mark Savington Gartrell, father of Leah Jane Gartrell, like so many other Virginians, moved to Ohio and lived in the vicinity of Circleville, Xenia and Urbana, and later moved to Warren County, Indiana.

Indiana was the home of Luther C. Bailey until he was twenty-two years of age. In the meantime he attended the common schools, the Greenhill Seminary at Greenhill, Indiana, and Purdue University at LaFayette. He taught school for several years in Warren County, and while there was engaged to some extent in the occupation of farming.

Mr. Bailey came to Topeka January 1, 1889. His first two years in the state were spent as a teacher; he then entered the insurance business at Topeka and had continued to the present time. He had built up a business second to none in Kansas, and in insurance circles is favorably known all over the state; he is now president of the Kansas Insurance Federation.

Mr. Bailey is a devoted student as well as a man of great industry and business ability, having accumulated a considerable property. It is seldom that business ability and literary taste are combined, but Mr. Bailey presents this rare combination to a marked degree. Much of his leisure time is given over to literary pursuits, historical subjects receiving the greater attention. He writes occasional good verse and had written numerous articles on historical and literary subjects which at present are incomplete, and may, at some future time, be published. Notwithstanding the literary trend of Mr. Bailey’s mind, it is only the one side of his character and the fact that he had developed a good business and is a man of keen judgment and foresight, proves that he is not a dilettante nor a dreamer. His early education was for the bar but he had never practiced law.

Mr. Bailey’s public spirit and civic pride have made his residence in Topeka a source of real service to the community. He had been active in building up the industries of the city, in the matter of street railways, he had been a prominent factor, and is likewise interssted in the educational institutions. He had long been connected with the city library, and was formerly a member of the Board of Education. He possesses an unusual personality, and had the faculty of attracting his friends to him by ties that are not easily broken.

On December 31, 1891, Mr. Bailey married Miss Ida Alice Roudebush, whose parents, Samuel and Catharine Roudebush, had moved from Carroll County, Ohio, to Topeka in 1891. Mr. and Mrs. Bailey have three children: Leah Catharine, George L. and Eugene M.



Connelley, William E. A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans. Chicago : Lewis, 1918. 5v. Biographies can be accessed from this page: Kansas and Kansans Biographies.

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