No, you are not barking up the wrong tree. I'm in touch with other direct descendants of the BAGG line, but am not sure how much help this will be as we have not reached a confirmed UK connection.
I, too, believe in reconnecting the famillies disconnected by emigration from the UK and other countries. While your belief that there may have been some problems among relatives, my thinking is more along the lines of separation by illiteracy and sudden deaths that did not get communicated to relatives back in England.
I'm currently mapping out the origins of those we know on a UK road atlas as proximity is one factor in marriages. Patterns are starting to form, which I believe will help us to go after confirming information in a more focused way.
Bonus: We have a large team of people from related families pooling their genealogies to make faster, well-sourced connections.
In Newfoundland, Canada, *Hugh BAGG is believed to have been born c. 1759 in either St Lawrence or Lamaline, both on the Burin peninsula (S)/E corner of NL. He m. Jane ? b. c. 1763. They had at least 7 children, although Joseph Small wrote that they had 8. Names of children b.1783 - 1809 are John (m. Sarah); Sarah (m. John MATTHEWS - this is my line); Elizabeth (m. Charles COLLIER); Hugh; Frances (m. Benjamin KEEPING); William; Maria (m. John PINK).
*Hugh BAGG and ? MATTHEWS are believed to have founded Cape LaHune in the Burin Peninsula, NL. MATTHEWS and ANDERSON are believed to have founded Burgeo, NL.
There is some reason to believe that *Hugh was present in Bere Regis in 1797 when Charlotte BAGG m. William GUY. Charlotte and William 'went to live in nearby Parkstone to raise their family', according to a posting on www.curiousfox.com
ANDERSON, BAGG, GUY, MATTHEWS, VACHER/VATCHER were all shown in the same posting on www.curiousfox
where Charlotte m. William GUY. Of the above men, ANDERSON, MATTHEWS and VACHER/VATCHER were known to be men of the sea, very likely engaged in the seasonal fishery before settling in NL permanently.
The BAGG family must have settled in NL earlier for Hugh to have been born in NL.
Let's not forget the surname STONE. My great-grandfather, William J DAVIDGE m. (1)Caroline CAINES, (2)widow Jane STONE. Jane STONE's maiden name was ANDERSON. Jane STONE'S first marriage was to Jobe/Joby STONE, close friend to William J DAVIDGE. The STONEs had at least one child (name unknown, age abt 10-12 y/o) who is shown in a photo of William and Jane, along with William's youngest daughter, Geraldine (abt 14 y/o)
I have heard recently from someone who is related to Charlotte BAGG/William GUY and hope to learn more soon.
I have reason to believe that the same William GUY had a second marriage in Burgeo to *John MATTHEWS' (b. 1781) granddaughter, Ann MATTHEWS.
IMHO, Charlotte may have died, leaving William so lonely that he left England to rejoin his friends who were all living in Burgeo by this time.
Plympton is very close to Plymouth, not that far by sea from Poole/Bournemouth. Parkstone is adjacent to Poole. We have a mapped string going from Lydlinch to Bere Regis.
IMHO, groups of families knew each other, often intermarrying repeatedly for hundreds of years before emigrating from England and repeated this when they emigrated. Our descendancy book that started out as a search for all of the descendants of Sarah GUY m. John DAVIDGE shows this very clearly in North America.
Hugh BAGG m. Jane ? are my 6x great-grandparents.
If we are connnected, it will likely be along a sibling line through Hugh BAGG.
I hope the above is helpful. Please contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
so we can see where the connections might be.
In our work as a group, the most important factor in making connections that are accurate has been through knowing who the sibllings of each person are.