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Inventory of the Louis Baker Papers, circa 1917-1968, 2007
Inventory of the Louis Baker Papers, circa 1917-1968, 2007
|Abstract:||Photographs, correspondence, and other papers of Louis Baker, president of M. Baker and Sons meat packing plant and founding member of the Charleston County Livestock Growers Association. Materials include photographs of Louis Baker and the M. Baker and Sons plant; certificates from Louis's involvement in the National Independent Meat Packers Association, the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine (renamed Shriners International), and the Scottish Rite of the Freemasons; financial records from his position as treasurer of Beth Israel Synagogue in Charleston, South Carolina, correspondence, and printed materials including synagogue programs and newspaper clippings. Also includes recordings of his sons' Bar Mitzvah's at Congregation Emanu-El in Charleston.|
|Title:||Louis Baker papers|
|Creator:||Baker, Louis, 1909-1955|
|Date(s):||circa 1917-1968, 2007|
|Extent:||0.5 linear feet
(1 slim document box, 1 oversize folder)
|Repository:||Special Collections, College of Charleston Libraries
66 George Street
Charleston, SC 29424
Phone: (843) 953-8016
Fax: (843) 953-6319
|Call Number:||Mss 1136|
|Language of Material:||Materials in English and Russian|
Louis Baker (1909-1955) was born to Rebecca Logan (1888-1958) and Morris Baker (1879-1952). In 1914, he immigrated to the United States with his mother and siblings to join his father, who had arrived in the United States in 1909. The family settled in Charleston, South Carolina, where Morris Baker began buying and selling livestock, eventually establishing his own meat packing plant, M. Baker and Sons. The Bakers became members of Beth Israel, a congregation established in 1911 largely by immigrants from eastern Europe.
Louis Baker joined his father at M. Baker and Sons in the late 1930s. A pioneer in Charleston County's beef cattle industry, Louis became a founding member of the Charleston County Livestock Growers Association and served as president of the South Carolina Meat Packers Association. He bought a large farm on Johns Island to raise cattle, which he sold wholesale from a packing plant in North Charleston. In 1940, he married Pearl Cohen (1912-2014) and the couple had four children, Barry Baker, Stanley Baker, Sharon Baker, and Sandra Baker. By 1944, the Bakers had opened a butcher shop at 556 King Street in Charleston. The store sold non-kosher meats from a counter up front and kosher meat from behind a partition, later becoming an exclusively kosher market.
In 1947, Louis and his wife, Pearl Cohen Baker, were among the founders of Charleston's new Conservative congregation, Emanu-El, though they continued to be active in Beth Israel as well. Additionally, Louis was a member of the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine (today known as Shriners International), and was a 32nd degree Mason. He died in 1955 at the age of forty-five from a damaged heart valve caused by having rheumatic fever as a child. Shortly after his death, M. Baker and Sons suffered significant fire damage and closed in 1957.
The collection consists primarily of materials relating to the life and career of Louis Baker, president of the Charleston meat packing plant M. Baker and Sons. Photographs feature images of Louis and the M. Baker and Sons plant, as well as one family portrait of Morris and Rebecca Baker with their children Sophie, Louis, Julie, and Sarah. Also included are certificates from Louis Baker's involvement in several organizations, such as the National Independent Meat Packers Association, the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine (renamed Shriners International), and the Scottish Rite of the Freemasons. There are also financial records from his position as treasurer of Beth Israel Synagogue (which later merged with Brith Sholom and became Brith Sholom Beth Israel Synagogue), a small amount of correspondence, and printed materials including synagogue programs and newspaper clippings, including advertisements for M. Baker and Sons, marriage announcements, and obituaries.
Materials are described at the folder level.
Search TermsThe following terms have been used to index this collection in the Library's online catalog. They are grouped by name of person, family, or organization, by topical subject, by place, and by types of material.
- Baker, Louis, 1909-1955
- Baker family
- M. Baker and Sons
- Beth Israel (Charleston, S.C.)--Finance
- Meat industry and trade--South Carolina--Charleston
- Packing-houses--South Carolina--Charleston
- Jewish businesspeople--South Carolina--Charleston
- Jews--South Carolina--Charleston
- Charleston (S.C.)--Commerce
Types of Material
- Black-and-white photographs
- Financial records
- Clippings (information artifacts)
Related materials in Special Collections includes an oral history with Pearl Cohen Baker (Mss 1035-360).
The majority of photographs feature Louis Baker in a professional setting. Images include Charleston County Livestock Growers Association events, Louis Baker with a group of children dressed as cowboys on the Fran Bob show, at a Livestock Association event in Illinois, with other businessmen in the Charleston Livestock Association, and seated in an office. Also includes an image of the Bakers' butcher shop at 556 King Street in Charleston, South Carolina, and one family portrait of Morris and Rebecca Baker with their children Sophie, Louis, Julie, and Sarah.
A record of Louis Baker's birth created in 1929 and signed by a Notary Public, a marriage certificate for Louis Baker and Pearl Cohen, and yahrzeit calendars for Morris Baker and Louis Baker.
Includes a letter appointing Louis Baker as a Notary Public of the State of South Carolina, a letter from the Charleston County Livestock Growers Association to the family of Louis after his death, and a letter from L. Mendel Rivers to the wife of Max Cohen, Pearl Cohen Baker's father, after his death.
American Business Women's Association National Citation awarded to Pearl C. Baker, a Merit Award to Mr. and Mrs. Baker from the Charleston Jewish Community Center, membership certificate for M. Baker and Sons in the National Independent Meat Packers Association, and a certificate of recognition from the Jewish Welfare Fund to Pearl C. Baker.
Includes a class 2 slaughterer license, and certificates from The Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine (renamed Shriners International), and the Scottish Rite of the Freemasons.
Receipts and statements from Louis Baker's term as the treasurer of Beth Israel synagogue.
Recordings of the Haftorah portions for Barry Baker's bar mitzvah in August 1957, and his brother, Stanley's, in November 1959, made by Cantor Jacob J. Renzer, Synagogue Emanu-El.
Articles on the marriage of Louis Baker to Pearl Cohen, advertisements for M. Baker and Sons, reports of a major fire at the M. Baker and Sons plant, and the obituary of Louis Baker.
Includes a 2007 Camp Baker program, with a tribute to Louis and Pearl Baker on the back cover. Louis and Pearl Baker volunteered use of a portion of their property on Folly Beach to accommodate the Charleston JCC's day camp, which was then named Camp Baker.
This collection is open for research.
The nature of the College of Charleston's archival holdings means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. Special Collections claims only physical ownership of most archival materials.
The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.
[Identification of item], Louis Baker papers, College of Charleston Libraries, Charleston, SC, USA.
Materials were donated in 2011 and 2012 by Barry Baker.
Processed by Amy Lazarus, October 2015.
Encoded by Amy Lazarus, November 2015.
Reviewed and uploaded by Joshua Minor, November 2015.