THE LEADING CITIZENS OF MADISON COUNTY

CONTENTS
Preface
Names Index
Portrait Index


   GEORGE W. BAKER, a well-known citizen and a leading agriculturist of the county, was born October 18,1818, on the farm in Lebanon where he now resides. His father, David Baker, was a native of Westmoreland, Oneida County, N. Y. His grandfather, Solomon Baker, was born, it is thought, in Cambridge, Washington County. His great-grandfather, David Baker, a New England farmer of English ancestry, served in the Revolutionary War, and was in the battle of Bennington. Coming to New York not many years after, he settled in Cambridge, and there spent the remainder of his days, dying when about eighty years of age. His wife was a physician.
   A farmer's son, reared to agricultural pursuits, Solomon Baker pursued his father's calling during his life, going first to the town of Westmoreland, Oneida County, leaving that place about 1792, and coming to that part of Herkimer County, as it then was, now included in the town of Lebanon. Securing an extensive tract of land at government prices, ranging from one to three dollars per acre, he built a log house; and, clearing the land of its heavy growth of timber, in process of time he had a large farm under good cultivation. He lived to about the age of seventy-five years. The maiden name of his wife was Delany Loucks. She was born in the Mohawk Valley, of Dutch parentage. She reared nine children. A part of the farm of Solomon Baker became the inheritance of his son David, father of the subject of this sketch, who lived on it until about three years before his death, when he sold the place to his son, and bought a home for himself in the village of Lebanon. David Baker married Dolly Batchelor, who was born in Connecticut, and who died in the village of Lebanon. Of the six children of Mr. and Mrs. David Baker, only two, George and Orange W., are now living. Orange W. resides at Grant Park, Kankakee County, Ill.
   George W. Baker, the subject of this sketch, was educated in the public schools of his native town. At twenty years of age he began teaching, but, having taught about ten terms of school, turned his attention to agriculture. After marriage he purchased with his brother the paternal acres, and later bought out his brother's interest in the same. He has since been successfully engaged in general farming, and now owns four hundred acres of well-improved land, one of the best farms in the county. October 14, 1846, he married Hannah Head, who was born in Lebanon in 1818. Mrs. Baker's father, Sanford Head, was born in Little Compton, R.I., a son of Joseph Head, a native, it is believed, of the same place, but of English descent. The last-named, a farmer, came to New York in his early years, driving a team. Buying timber land in what is now the town of Madison, he cleared a farm, and there lived and died. He married Rebecca Sanford, of Rhode Island, daughter of the captain of a whaler, who lost his life at sea. Mr. and Mrs. Head had six sons, none of whom are living. Mrs. Head spent her last years with a son in Georgetown. Sanford Head was seven years old when he came with his parents to Madison County. His education in the public schools fitted him to become a teacher at the age of about seventeen, in which profession he continued for several years. Having taught one term after his marriage, he bought land in Lebanon, and from that time on engaged in farming, remaining a resident of this town until his death. He was twice married. His first wife was Sally Ballard, a native of Massachusetts, daughter of Dane and Rebecca (Forbes) Ballard. She died in 1821. His second wife was Anna Ballard, half-sister of his first wife. There were four children by the first wife, and five by the second. Mr. and Mrs. Baker have three children living--Sanford, Seymour, and Sarah. Sanford married Jennie Dunham, and has five children-- Will, G. Larmon, Harry, Calista, and Max. Seymour married Annie Morgan, and has five children--Clara, Blaine, Katy, Molly, and George.
   Mr. Baker cast his first vote for William Henry Harrison. He was a Whig until the formation of the Republican party, since which time he has been a firm supporter of its principles. Various offices of public trust have been honorably filled by him, as that of Assessor six years, Justice of the Peace twelve years, Supervisor two years, and School Inspector five years.

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