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Baroness Burton

2nd Baroness Burton, Nellie Lisa Bass - wife of my 4th cousin, Colonel James Evan Bruce Baillie.

Nellie Lisa Bass was the wife of my 4th cousin, Colonel James Evan Bruce Baillie of Dochfour. I came across the photo above while investigating my Baillie family connection and thought I would investigate this relative (by marriage) as her photo struck me as being of a lady of grace and poise.


The Bass family turns out to have an interesting history in Great Britain that involves beer, Royalty and yet another historic home.


The Bass family, and therefore Nellie Lisa, descend from William Bass, the founder of the Bass Brewery. The Bass Brewery was established in Burton-upon-Trent in 1777. The brewery's main brew was Bass Pale Ale which was once the highest selling ale in all of Great Britain. By 1877, Bass Bewery had become the largest brewery in the world.


Bass Bewery took control of a number of other breweries over the centuries and still exists although it was acquired by Interbrew (now Anheuser-Busch InBev) in 2000 and then sold to Molson-Coors (forced to do so by the British Government) but Bass Pale Ale is still owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev. The Bass red triangle was the first trademark issued in the UK and is still used on the Bass Pale Ale. In Monet's famous painting "A Bar at the Foilies-Bergere" a bottle of Bass Ale can be seen in the painting.


The success of the Bass Brewery afforded the Bass family enough wealth to be able to build "Rangemore Hall", a large estate built up by the Bass's during the 1800's and passed down through the family, ending with Nellie Lisa Bass, 2nd Baroness of Burton.


Rangemore Hall has seen a number of changes over the years. It started off more modestly in 1822 and then in the 1850's was expanded  for Michael Thomas Bass, then head of the Bass, Ratcliff & Gretton Brewery. Michael and his family occupied the expanded building 1860. When Michael's son, Michael Arthur Bass inherited the estate, he further expanded it adding the Edward VII wing in 1898-1901in preparation for a visit by King Edward VII in 1902. The King visited a second time on January 5, 1907 along with his wife, Queen Alexandra. For fun, King Edward VII also brought along his mistress, Mrs. Alice Keppel. A special discreet room was set up for the King and his mistress to rendevous with discretion.


Nellie Lisa Bass inherited Rangemore Hall upon her father's death. After the death of my cousin, her first husband, Nellie remarried but was again widowed. In 1949 Baroness Burton found Rangemore Hall to be too large for her and so she sold Rangemore Hall to the Stafforshire County Council afterwhich it was used as a school for the partially deaf. Today Rangemore Hall has been divided into luxury flats/apartments and is a listed historic building, meaning it will be around for generations to come. A photo of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra's visit in 1907 can be viewed below.


To view the luxury of Rangemore Hall as it appears today, visit:

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