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History of Adair
County, Iowa, 1915.

Biographical.  Volume 2.


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C. A. Baker.

C. A. Baker is the cashier of the State Savings Bank at Fontanelle and was the dominant factor in the organization of that institution.  He has made a close study of financial problems and his thorough acquaintance with every phase of the banking business has enabled him to make this a thoroughly reliable financial concern.

Mr. Baker was born in Livingston county, Illinois, on the 17th of December, 1858, and is a son of Thomas F. and Susan (McMillin) Baker, who were natives of Ohio and Virginia respectively.  They were married, however, in Indiana and soon thereafter removed to Livingston county, Illinois, where they took up their abode upon a farm.  At a later period they became residents of Fairbury, Illinois, where the father engaged in merchandising and with that business he was prominently identified for fifteen years or more, becoming one of the influential residents of his community.  He died about 1912, while his wife is still living.

C. A. Baker after completing a course of study in the high school at Fairbury, Illinois, enjoyed the advantages of a business course in Grand Prairie Seminary at Onarga, Illinois.  For some years thereafter he was in the employ of the Chicago & Northwestern Railway Company as station agent and operator but about 1900 gave up railroad work and entered the banking business at Coon Rapids, Iowa, in the capacity of bookkeeper in the First National Bank of that place.  There he laid the foundation for his later success in connection with the banking business, which he thoroughly studied during the four years which he spent as bookkeeper.  On the expiration of that period he went to Cumberland, Iowa, where he entered into partnership with A. Dixon, who was then president of the First National Bank of Coon Rapids.  Together they bought a private banking business and a few months later Mr. Baker organized the First National Bank at Cumberland, of which institution he became the cashier and practically the director of its financial policy.  In March, 1905, after disposing of his banking interests in that place he removed to Fontanelle, where he organized the State Savings Bank.  He built the present bank building, with the assistance of C. T. Launder,  and on the 26th of August, 1905, the doors of the new institution were thrown open for business.  From the beginning a liberal patronage has been accorded them and the success of the undertaking is attributable largely to the business enterprise and broad experience of Mr. Baker.

In May, 1892, was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Baker and Miss Grace Welch, of Glidden, Iowa, and to them have been born four children:  Eunice W., a graduate of the Fontanelle high school;  Olive L;  Charles L.;  and Julia Mae.  The parents hold membership in the Methodist Episcopal church and theirs is an attractive and hospitable home, its good cheer being greatly enjoyed by their many friends.  In his fraternal relations Mr. Baker is a Mason and an Odd Fellow and is loyal to the beneficent spirit which underlies those organizations.  His political allegiance is given to the republican party.  During the years 1912 and 1913 he filled the office of mayor of Fontanelle, his administration being a most business-like and progressive one.  It was during his incumbency in office that the waterworks, electric light plant and town hall were built.  He stands for progress and improvement in all public affairs and his cooperation and influence have been potent elements in advancing the interests and improving the conditions of the city in which he resides.



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