I am attempting to assist a gentleman on Long Island in finding the truth behind a family story. The story goed that his grandfather Bernard Mark Stewart was born in Manchester England. He lost his father in a war (Boar War?)at a very young age and his mother remarried a wealthy merchantman. At a point about 1877 when Bernard was 7 years old the boy and his mother (and possibly the stepfather) came to the United States to shop in Boston. Bernard ran away because he did not like the stepfather, and was discovered sleeping in a fish box on the Boston fish pier (probably T-wharf) by a fisherman named Johnson who supposedly was from Bailey Island, Maine. (there are many Johnsons on Bailey Island) He lived on Baileys Island and worked as a fisherman and in the Johnson's family store until moving to Long Island, Maine and marrying Minni Johnson Woodbury (Minni's mother was a Johnson from Chebeague Island (where there were also many Johnsons), father was a Woodbury from Long Island where there were a few Johnsons). Bernard later moved to Portland and had a store on Vaughn St. as well as a fish market on Peaks Island.
The family is interested in finding out which Johnson family Bernard was found by and who raised him. The only part of the story they have is that they were Johnsons and were from Bailey Island.
I have been unable to turn up much so far regarding this story. Bernard was 7 when found in 1877 and he was married and on Long Island by 1893. No one on Bailey Island remembers the name Stewart from that time period nor is there a recollection of the Johnsons having a store on Baileys within that time frame (1877-1890)
Bernard's naturalization record shows that he was born August 14, 1870, in England. He supposedly could read and write so the assumption is that he went to school on Bailey's but their are scanty school records for that time period. The Casco bay directories that I have access to start in 1902 and I find Bernard and wife already on Long Island by then. I can find them in later editions and it the Portland directories but not before.
The possibility also exists that the Johnson family was from Chebeague Island not Baileys and the store was on that island. I have not looked into that avenue yet.
I have a query in to the family as to a death certificate but the parent info was probably filled out by the family members and left as unknown.
Does anyone have access to the 1880 census records for Bailey Island, Cumberland County, Maine.
This would be his naturalization record. I couldn't find an 1880 census record for 10 year Bernard anywhere? There is one 1892 New York census record that may be him?
Thank you for the info. Every little bit helps. Bernard has got to show up living with someone during 1880 to 1890 so I'll keep looking. I love a good mystery.
You also may find additional info at Cumberland naturalization records, but you'll have to search page by page as there's not a by name search available at this time.
Naturalization record of Bernard M Stewart at familysearch.org
JOHNSON ALSO ON BIRCH ISLAND : CHARLES I BELIEVE,ROBERT STEWART MY GREAT GRANDFATHER LIVED ON THE ISLAND ACROSS FROM LOOKOUT POINT.THE ALLENS IN HARPSWELL MAY BE OF SOME HELP.MY FATHER SAID THER WAS A GIRLS CAMP ON THE ISLAND WERE JOHNSON HAD SUPPLYS HE ALSO BOUGH CHICKENS & EGGS FROM MY GRANDFATHER,ROBERT STEWART.
NELSON J. STEWART