DRESDEN — James Leamon, author of a new biography of the Rev. Jacob Bailey, an 18th century Pownalborough preacher, will speak at Pownalborough Court House, Route 128, on Sunday, Sept. 16, at 2 p.m.

Lincoln County Historical Society will sponsor the event, which is the official release of “The Reverend Jacob Bailey, Maine Loyalist: For God, King, Country, and for Self.” Leamon will give a free public talk about this local Loyalist caught in the upheaval of the American Revolution.

Leamon will then sign copies of his book as offered for sale by LCHA. All profits will go toward court house repairs.

According to a news release from LCHA, the book tells the story of the Rev. Bailey, a missionary preacher for the Church of England in the frontier town of Pownalborough (now Dresden), who refused to renounce allegiance to King George III during the American War of Independence.

Relying largely on Bailey’s unpublished journals and voluminous correspondence, Leamon traces Bailey’s evolution from his rustic background through his Harvard education and subsequent career as a teacher, Congregational minister, and missionary preacher for the Church of England.

Along the way, Bailey absorbed many of the intellectual currents of the Enlightenment, but also the more traditional conviction that family, society, religion and politics, like creation itself, should be orderly and hierarchal. Such beliefs led Bailey to oppose the Revolution as unnatural, immoral and doomed to fail.

Leamon’s study of Bailey depicts the complex nature and burdens of one person’s loyalism while revealing much about 18th-century American life and culture.

Leamon grew up in Cambridge, Mass., and graduated from Bates College in Lewiston. He earned a doctorate in American colonial history at Brown University in 1961. After a brief stint teaching in Iowa and Pennsylvania, he returned to Bates in 1964 as a member of the history department, where he taught courses in early American history and historical archaeology until his retirement in 2000.

For more information, call 737- 2239 or visit www.lincolncountyhistory.org.

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