He is called "Old John" by many Bairds to distinguish him from the numerous other John Baird's, who also came to the USA. Old John is the progenitor of almost 1/3 of all Bairds, Beards, and Beairds in the United States.
Bairds began emigrating to the United States with John Baird of Aberdeen
Other than Old John, there have been numerous Baird lines, both directly from Scotland and those who stopped off in Ulster and Antrim, Ireland for a couple of hundred years before coming on to the US. These are know as the Scots-Irish, and have achieved many great things as Americans. Bairds live all over the US, and it is the largest Baird population in the world now. Sadly, very few Bairds remain in Scotland. The majority of them are in the US, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
Clan Baird Society Worldwide is very active in the United States and is based there. It is also active in Canada, Australia, and new Zealand, as well as many other countries where Bairds live.
The Society website is
He came to New Jersey in 1694, from Aberdeen, as part of the headright of Sir Robert Barclay of Ury (our Commander Richard Holman-Baird's family owned Ury last and he still retains the barony as part of his title). Robert Barclay of Ury was and is the great Quaker Apologist; his book is still used as the basis for Quaker belief. The Bairds and the Barclays are buried at the Houff on the Ury Estate, near Stonehaven.