Obituary of James Thomas Bailey
James Thomas Bailey of Union,
Master Woodworker dies at 92
UNION, Maine — James Thomas Bailey (Jim) Bailey, 92, died peacefully on Saturday, September 10, 2022. He was a woodworker, husband, father, mentor, teacher and friend.
Jim was a cabinetmaker and an expert in his field. His many beautiful wooden creations include chests of drawers, tables, benches, boxes, signs, and advent calendars, currently being enjoyed by people from all over the world.
Jim was born in Waltham, Massachusetts on July 18, 1930, to parents Walter and Zilpha. He grew up with his sister Drusilla in Cape Porpoise, Maine. There he first discovered his knack for woodworking, and developed a lifetime love of boats and being out on the water. He acquired his first power tool - a band saw- at the age of 13. He served in the Coast Guard from 1949 to 1953, before becoming a machine parts salesman.
In 1975, Jim and his wife Lori moved to Warren, Maine where he pursued his dream of a woodworking career. He was one of the “original five” woodworkers at Lyman Morse Boatbuilding in Thomaston. He would go on to work there for 30 years, crafting elegantly finished cabinetry for yachts and sailboats from around the world. In 1987, Jim and his wife moved to Crawford Lake in Union, ME.
Jim was a lifelong Mason and a master of the St. George Lodge. He served as ambulance director in Warren and a selectman in Union and— perhaps most legendarily— as captain of the Crawford Queen, his beloved boat. Over the years he captained sunset cruises around the lake, where neighbors became friends and formed a vibrant lakeside community.
He will be missed by his many beloved friends from around the lake and beyond.
He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Lori, and 4 children, Tom, Libi, Richard, and Jennifer.
A celebration of his life will be held in the summer of 2023 at the home he built on Crawford Lake.
Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at www.ripostafh.com
To plant a beautiful memorial tree in memory of James Bailey, please visit our Tree Store