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BENJAMIN L. BAKER
 
 

  BENJAMIN L. BAKER was born August 28, 1845 in Shelby County, Indiana, the son of George and Elizabeth (Hollis) Baker. In the fall of 1850 the family went to Page County, Iowa. Benjamin was still at home in Iowa on the 1860 census. In 1869, the family moved to Johnson County, Missouri, but Benjamin went to Arizona.

   He’s listed on the 1870 and 1880 census in Prescott, Yavapai County. He was first a Mail Carrier in the mountains, then later the Stage Superintendent in Prescott.

   Benjamin was a part time prospector and filed mining claims everywhere he went, but apparently never struck it rich. He always kept a full time job as well.

   Ida Lee was born 15 July 1862 in Buckeye, Colusa County, California. She had a daughter, Frances, born Feb. 1880 in Santa Barbara. Frances was from Ida's first marriage but used the surname Baker. In July 1880, Ida was divorced and in Prescott, Arizona and lived with a Shull family as a servant. The daughter, Frances, was not with her then, but was with Ida and Benjamin later.
   Ida married Benjamin Baker, 17 November 1880 in Prescott. The marriage wasn’t recorded but was announced in the newspaper on November 18, 1880.
   Their first child, Lena, was born in Prescott, Arizona in 1881. The next, Frederick, was born in Oklahoma in 1883.
   By 1890, the family, including Frances, was in Butte, Montana. Frances married John Hirt and went to Shasta Co., California. Lena married Ernest Hardie and stayed in Montana until after 1920, then moved to Shasta. Frederick married Nettie Seivers and stayed in Butte.
   Benjamin died in November 04, 1916 in Butte and Ida went to Shasta with her married daughters. They and their children lived in Dunsmuir and Redding. Ida died 2 February 1948 in Redding, Shasta County, California.

 

Note: Benjamin was the Stage Superintendent in Prescott at the time that Doc Holliday and the Earps were living there. The population of Prescott was only 1,200 people.

 

 

The following is his obituary:
 
Obituary from "The Butte Daily Miner"
Benjamin L. Baker
Butte, Montana
 
Baker--at the family residence, 1750 Grand Avnue, Nov. 4, 1916,
Benjamin L. Baker, in the 68th year of his age, beloved husband
of Mrs. Ida Baker, father of Mrs. J. F. Hirt of Densmore, Cal., Mrs.
Ernest Hardle of Boulder, Mont, and F. C. Baker of this city.  The
remains will be removed from Sherman & Reed's Undertaking
Parlors to the family residence this Sunday morning, where the
funeral will take place this evening at 6:00 o'clock. Cremation
will take place in Spokane. Please omit flowers.
 
 
The following newspaper articles are from The Arizona Miner, Prescott, Arizona.
Thanks to The Arizona State Archives for some of them.
 

  

   
                          January 22, 1874
 
 
   
                       January 11, 1881                             27 October 1880
 
 
  
 
Tax Records
 
                                         1881
 
1880
 
 
                                  1879
 
 
The following article and retraction were also printed in the Arizona Miner.
 
ooops!!!!!!!
 
 
 
              August 30, 1880                                             September 6, 1880
 
 
Some additional mentions of Ben in the newspapers
 
 

 

 

 

 
 
After he went to Montana Ben was involved in a long legal dispute with the Water Company over their use of his land.
 
 
 
Benjamin's Mining Claims in Montana
 
Claim One
 
Claim Two
 
 
 
 
James R. Baker, Jr.
 
jrbakerjr@yahoo.com

 
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