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Mary Jane Bonney Baker (1840-1915)

Voyage: 1868-1869

Ship: Waldo

Mary Jane Bonney was born in Kingston, MA, the daughter of George Bonney and Mary P. Ripley. In 1859 she married Capt. Levi Baker (1835-1869) of the Crooked Lane neighborhood of Duxbury (North Duxbury). In 1868 she made a voyage with her husband and their children, Mary Agnes and Edward, aboard the Waldo to Portugal, Spain and Ireland. In a letter written from Cadiz, Spain to his brother, Levi wrote, Mary and the children stood the bad weather very well and the former is very well indeed for her. This climate agrees with her I think.” Later, from Uruguay he wrote of life aboard ship, “Mary Jane sends love to you and to Sophy says tell you we have got a menagerie Dog, Cat, Canary, hens etc. She has got one hen and hopes to raise some chickens.  She has got a lot of plants here and they are growing finely, has two Gold fish also.  She has the promise of a young Ostrich but I don’t know whether she will get it or not.” Levi praised Mary Jane for her equilibrium and ability to care for the children even when they were frightened in a storm. After their return, Levi fell ill with typhoid fever and died at age 33. Their son, Levi Baker, was born seven months later in Feb. 1870.

Mary Jane Baker married her second husband, Amasa S. Soule, in 1873. Together they had one child, Abbie, in 1876. The Soules resided in Halifax before moving to Connecticut.


Edward Baker Collection, DAL.MSS.045, Drew Archival Library

Click to view: letters of Capt. Levi Baker

Source: Google maps.