Bio-Pen Pictures

residing on the Almaden road, in the Pioneer District, Almaden Township, is the owner of perhaps the most desirable farm in his district.  His residence is about nine miles from the Court House in San Jose, an four miles from New Almaden.

Mr. Baker was born in Hampshire County, West Virginia, February 2, 1835.  He was reared to a farm life, and received his education in that county.  The work to which he was trained has been the chief business of his life.  He left his native State for Saline County, Missouri, in 1855, and there worked for Robert Wilson for two years and two months, with a view to getting enough money to come to California.  By hard work and economy, this was accomplished, and in August, 1858, he reached San Jose, his entire capital being $1.50.  His resent position, as the owner of a splendid farm of 300 acres, speaks truly of his ambition, energy, and good management.  This farm, to-day, in character of improvements, buildings,  etc., is second to none in this part of the county.  During the year following his arrival  in California, he purchased a part of the property which he has ever since owned, and upon which he now makes his home.  Later he has added to his farm by purchase, until it has reached its present extent.  His costly residence was erected in 1886.

In 1865, he was united in marriage with Miss Winifred L. Hart, who was born in Massachusetts, but who has been a resident of this State since 1850.  In 1873 Mr. Baker left his Santa Clara home, and during the ten years following made his home at Hollister, where he engaged in stock and general farming.  He owned there a farm of 172 acres, and sixteen miles from Hollister a magnificent stock ranch of 2, 320 acres.  He also engaged in butchering while a resident of that place.  In 1883 he disposed of all his property near Hollister, and returned to the home place, to the cultivation of which he has since devoted his entire attention.

Mr. and Mrs. Baker have eight children living, all of whom are yet under the parental roof:  Mary L., Reuben F., Josephine, Walter R., Emily, Ella, Irene, and Teresa.  The sixth child, Charles, died in infancy.

Politically Mr. Baker is identified with the Democratic party, with tendencies to act independently, especially in local affairs.  The enterprise, industry, and good management which have won for him the prosperity which he enjoys, have also won recognition from his neighbors and associates.

SOURCE:  Pen Pictures From The Garden of the World or Santa Clara County, California, Illustrated. - Edited by H. S. Foote.- Chicago:  The Lewis Publishing Company, 1888. page 451
Transcirbed by Carolyn Feroben