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A. S. Williams III Americana Manuscript Collections

Guide to the George O. Baker and Joseph M. Baker papers W.0066

ASSET VIEWER
Publication:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 35487-0266
205.348.0500
archives@ua.edu

October 2013

Creation:

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2013-11-15T16:16-0600

Language Usage:

English

Description Rules:

Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Collection Title:

George O. Baker and Joseph M. Baker papers

Unit ID:

W.0066

Repository:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Quantity:

1.0 Linear feet

Dates:

1886-1898

Location:

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, The University of Alabama.

Abstract:

Correspondence, ledgers, and other papers of Selma, Alabama, businessmen, George O. Baker, his son, Joseph M. Baker, and their various companies and businesses.

creator

Baker, George O.

creator

Baker, Joseph M.

creator

Kyle, Robert Benjamin

creator

Williams, A. S., III

Access Restrictions:

None

Acquisition Information:

Gift of A. S. Williams, 2010

Biographical/Historical note

George Oscar Baker was born on February 29, 1828, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. On February 27, 1854, he married Emma Belzora Miner in Petersburg, Virginia; the couple had seven daughters and three sons.

The Bakers moved to Montevallo, Alabama, in 1855, where he worked as an engineer at the Montevallo Coal Company. In 1859, he moved to Selma and founded several businesses, including a grain and produce business. In 1870, he became the President of the Central Oil Mill. George Baker died on October 16, 1891, in Selma.

The son of George O. and Belzora M. Baker, Joseph Minor Baker was born on September 4, 1858. According to census records and Selma, Alabama, city directories, Baker was the manager of the Alabama Cotton Oil Company mill located in Selma. Baker married Lillian Hall and had two children, George and Belzora. Joseph Baker died on July 19, 1912.

Scope and Contents note

This collection contains correspondence, ledgers, and other papers of Selma, Alabama, businessmen, George O. Baker and his son, Joseph M. Baker. The first series is George Baker's correspondence relating to the development of Gadsden, Alabama. The second series contains letterbooks from Baker and Co., dating between 1904 and 1908. Much of this correspondence relates to his business transactions, including the sale of livestock and building leases. The third series contains the financial records of Baker and Co., Chilton Lumber Co., Dallas Iron Works, and Dallas Oil Co. from 1862-1869 and 1887-1904. The final volume is Joseph Baker's autograph and commonplace book. It includes many autographs and journal-type entries describing social events, plays, dances, etc. One such entry is a description of Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama.

Related Archival Materials note

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection holds other materials on the development of Alabama cities and industries, letterbooks, and diaries. Please see the staff for assistance.

Processing Information:

Processed by

Haley Aaron and Martha Bace, 2013

General note

Title on phase box spines: Joseph Baker's Commonplace Book - Selma, Alabama, 1875; Baker & Co. Letterbooks - Selma, Alabama, 1904-1908; Gadsden's Industrial Development by George Baker & R. B. Kyle - 1890-1900; Financial Records of Baker & Co., Chilton Lumber Co., Dallas Iron Works, and Dallas Oil Co., 1862-1869, 1887-1904

Preferred Citation:

George O. Baker and Joseph M. Baker papers, The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Source(s)

Williams, A. S., III (local)

Autograph albums (lcsh)

Business (lcsh)

Business and Labor (localbroad)

Business records (lcsh)

Correspondence (aat)

Daily Life and Family (localbroad)

Diaries (aat)

Etowah County (Ala.) (lcsh)

Farming and Agriculture (localbroad)

Gadsden (Ala.) (lcsh)

Ledgers (account books) (aat)

Letter books (aat)

Mardi Gras (lcsh)

Real estate development (lcsh)

Selma (Ala.) (lcsh)

Technology and Industry (localbroad)

George O. Baker correspondence

Scope and Contents note

This series contains correspondence sent and received by George O. Baker, primarily from Robert Benjamin Kyle, related to the development of Gadsden, Alabama. The letters, dating from 1886 to 1898, describe the purchase and development of real estate in the area by the Gadsden Land and Improvement Company.

Components in Detail

Outgoing correspondence Box W0066.01 Folder 1

Incoming correspondence Box W0066.01 Folder 2

Baker and Co. letterbooks

Scope and Contents note

This series contains letterbooks containing copies of Baker's correspondence, dating between 1904 and 1908. Much of this correspondence relates to his business transactions, including the sale of livestock and building leases. The correspondence is cataloged by the correspondent's last name and is listed in the alphabetical directory included in the front of each ledger. Many of the letters in the second ledger (1903-1905) have faded and are difficult to read.

Components in Detail

Letters, 1907-1949 Box W0066.02 Volume 1

Letters, 1903-1905 Box W0066.02 Volume 2

George O. Baker and Joseph M. Baker ledgers

Scope and Contents note

This series contains three ledgers. The smaller ledger with a green marbled cover lists the expenses of Joseph M. Baker from 1887 to 1911. The ledger lists renovation and building expenses for several home construction projects. The ledger also contains descriptions of Baker's assets, including real estate and shares in several companies, such as the Robbins and Baker Land Company, the Standard Oil Company, and the Chilton Lumber Company.

The second and third ledgers are larger and are the cash and day books for George O. Baker and Co. The cash book contains entries dated between 1862 and 1869 and records personal and business expenses. The day book contains entries dated between 1867 and 1869 and documents the expenses of George O. Baker and Company.

Components in Detail

J. M. Baker private accounts, 1886-1911 Box W0066.03 Volume 1

G. O. B. & Co. cash book Box W0066.03 Volume 2

G. O. B. & Co. day book Box W0066.03 Volume 3

Joseph M. Baker autograph book Box W0066.04

Scope and Contents note

This phase box contains Joseph M. Baker's autograph book which includes many autographs and journal entries describing social events, including plays, dances, boating excursions, and a description of Mardi Gras celebrations in Mobile, Alabama.