George Baddley was the son of Joseph Baddley and Elizabeth Turner. He was born on February 8, 1825 at Wolstanton, England. We have no records of his childhood and youth. When a young man he married Eliza Parker, who was the daughter of George Parker and Ann.
Both George and his wife worked in the potteries for which Staffordshire County was noted. Some of the finest china in England was made there. Eliza became very talented in the art of painting the china.
George and his wife were members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. George was baptized and confirmed in the year 1841 when he was sixteen years of age. He was a very devout man and a faithful worker in the branch where they lived. The activities of this particular branch brought much success for the progress of the Church in that region of the county.
After George and his wife received the spirit of gathering with the Saints in Zion, they worked hard and saved every penny they could in order to pay for their fare across the Atlantic Ocean to America. In 1848, after seven years of toil and struggle, they realized their dream and secured passage on a boat leaving for America. They happily accepted the prospects of a long six weeks' voyage. Not many comforts and luxuries accompanied them as they sailed to this new land, but they were not easily discouraged.
They had worked hard those long years, knowing and accepting the hardships and privations which lay before them.
When they reached America, their troubles were still heaped upon them. They had no further means with which they could continue the trip westward, so George and Eliza remained in Iowa for three years until they accumulated enough money to buy provisions for the journey across the plains.
Before George and his wife left England, a daughter, Annie, was born to them on December 3, 1846 at Burslem, Staffordshire, England. Their second child, Elizabeth, was born on January 13, 1849 while the young couple were living at Burlington, Iowa.
Two years after the arrival of their second child the family of George Baddley arrived in Salt Lake City in 1851. They located on 10th East where George had about four acres of land. A portion of their property was planted in fruit trees. From this fruit he made a delicious wine and fruit juice. He owned a distillery at that time, but later discontinued to operate it on advice of Brigham Young. Besides his property on 10th East, George had a large tract of land in the western section of town where he raised hay for his cows and mules.
George accepted the principal of plural marriage and married Charlotte DeGrey, a young woman who was born near his home in England. Charlotte, at the time, was employed in the household of George and Eliza, the latter learned to love Charlotte as her own sister, so when George accepted the teaching of plural marriage, it was at Eliza's suggestion that he take Charlotte as his second wife.
After ten years of pioneering and building in Salt Lake City, George was called to the Southern Mission in 1861. This was a colonizing mission to the Utah Dixie country along the "muddy", as the Virgin River was then deservedly called. Charlotte accompanied her husband to help pioneer the Dixie country. They were among the early settlers on the Virgin River. Their first child, a son, Alfred, was born on September 14, 1862 in a dugout in the side of the mountain at Grafton, Utah.
The extreme heat and hardships of the pioneer life was detrimental to George's health and he was given a release from his mission in Dixie and was able to return to his home in Salt Lake City in the year 1864. The years he had spent in Southern Utah had seen a decided improvement and growth. George had done much in the building and development of the communities in which he lived. The friends and neighbors of George were sorry to see him and his family leave.
Their second son, Henry Orson, was born at the point of the mountain on April 16, 1864 as the family returned to Salt Lake City.
Some time later after George had returned to his home, he discovered clay on his property located between 10th and 11th East. He established a pottery business there where he made dishes. His wife Eliza, from her past experience, was able to paint all the finished pottery items. George also built a molasses mill. He raised his own sugar cane from which he made the molasses. His children and those around the neighborhood were always on hand during the process of pressing the juice from the cane stalks and then the cooking of the juice. The children eagerly watched the molasses boil, knowing the skimmings were for them. Their share of the skimmings was taken home and mother made the favorite candy, "sorghum candy".
George was quite capable of taking advantage of the opportunities offered him. There was a large fresh water spring on his property near his home. He kept the large wooden barrel containers for the molasses soaked up in the water so that the molasses would not leak out.
To supply cool spring water for his home on the adjoining block, George built a small ditch from the spring. It proved to be very valuable during the cold winter months, because the spring water did not freeze. The majority of the pioneer families had to secure water from the irrigation ditches for their culinary water.
George had a quick temper and often did things for which he would later be sorry. In later years when the children were grown, they would tell stories about their father and make jokes about them. However, it was no joking matter when they were young children.
Alfred, the eldest son, was only eight-years-old at the time, but his father expected a great deal from him. George put him on one of the big mules, tied a sack of wheat on behind him, and sent Alfred to the mill with instructions to have the wheat ground into flour and return home. The old flour mill now stands in the Liberty Park.
When the miller put the bag of flour on behind Alfred, he did not secure it firmly. On arrival at home, Alfred had left a trail of flour from the mill to his home. Alfred received a good "thrashing".
On another occasion when the first train was expected to arrive in Salt Lake City, George hitched his mules to the wagon and took Charlotte and the children down to the depot to see the train come in. While they were waiting George gave the lines to Charlotte who was sitting on a high spring seat and told her to hold the mules so he could go and speak to a friend.
As the train came into the station the engineer gave a couple of loud toots on the whistle, which frightened the mules. Charlotte was taken by surprise and was unable to hold the mules. The man talking with George witnessed the happening and said, "Brother Baddley, there go your mules." George ran after the mules and climbed into the wagon, took the lines, and stopped the frightened animals.
Alfred who had been standing up to see the train, was thrown out of the wagon when his father stopped the mules so suddenly. George, still disgusted that the mules had been allowed to run, grabbed Alfred by the seat of his pants and literally threw him into the wagon.
George was strict in the discipline of his children but he was strict with himself in regards to his actions and dealings with his fellowman. He was a very devout man and a diligent worker in his Church and expected others to be the same.
One time during the period when he was the superintendent of the Tenth Ward Sunday School, he went outside the chapel at commencement time to bring in the children who were playing outside. He found some boys playing marbles in the warm sunshine. They seemed more interested in marbles than Sunday School. George took their marbles and threw them away and shoved the boys into the building. It was this impulsive action which caused resentment and sorrow to the boys as marbles were expensive and hard to get. George was a good and kind man but impulsive in action and sometimes harsh in his words. Nevertheless, he was a man who tried to do his best at all times.
In later years George's health continued to decline and for two and one half years he was bedridden. Consumption, as it was then called, was the cause of his death. At the time of his death, at the age of fifty years, George was nothing but a skeleton. He died on April 9, 1875 and funeral services in his respect were held at the Tenth Ward Chapel on a Sunday at one o'clock.
During mortal life George had been blessed with two fine wives and fifteen children. He had the following children by Eliza, his first wife; Annie, born December 3, 1846 at Burslem, Staffordshire, England; Elizabeth, born January 13, 1849 at Burlington, Iowa; Maria, born July 30, 1851 at Salt Lake City, Utah; (rest of children were born in Salt Lake City) Mary Jane, born on March 14, 1854; Eliza, born January 22, 1856; Emma born January 22, 1856 (twins); Martha, born December 20 1857; Ida, born December 7, 1859 and Rachell, born May 4, 1862.
George and Charlotte had six children: Alfred DeGrey, born September 14, 1862 at Grafton, Utah; Henry Orson, born on April 16, 1864 at the point of the mountain; Maria, born October 10, 1866 at Salt Lake City; George, born February 4, 1869; John William, born on January 16, 1871 and Sarah, born June 13, 1872. The last two children died early in life.