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59 Newton Diehl Baker, Jr

Page history last edited by ebryant 10 years, 11 months ago

December 3, 1871 – December 25, 1937




Personal Data


Born     December 3, 1871
Martinsburg, West Virginia, U.S.

Died     December 25, 1937 (aged 66)

Shaker Heights, Ohio, U.S.

Political party     Democratic

Parents:  Newton Diehl Baker I and Mary Dukehart

Spouse:     Elizabeth Leopold Baker

Alma mater:   Johns Hopkins University

Washington and Lee University

Profession     Politician, Lawyer




Attended village schools in Martinsburg, WV, through the second year of high school and finished his preparatory training at Episcopal High School near Alexandria, VA.
1888-1892--B.A., Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD.
1892-1894--L.L.B.,Washington and Lee University, Lexington, VA.
1895--Admitted to the bar.





Practiced law in Martinsburg, WV


Private secretary to Postmaster General William L. Wilson, Washington, D.C.


Member of law firm of Flick, Westenhaver, and Baker, Martinsburg, WV


Practiced in the law firm of Foran, McTighe & Baker, Cleveland, OH


Legal advisor to the Cleveland city Board of Equalization, Cleveland, OH


Assistant Director of Law, City of Cleveland, Cleveland, OH


Law Director, City of Cleveland (title changed to City Solicitor and became elected rather than appointed)


City Solicitor, Cleveland, OH


Mayor of Cleveland, OH


U.S. Secretary of War, Washington, D.C.


Private law practice in the firm of Baker, Hostetter, Sidlo & Patterson, Cleveland, OH


Awards and Honors


Outstanding lawyer of the year by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, 1920

American Hebrew, 1930

Medal from the National Institute of Social Sciences  for his service to humanity, 1933


Membership-Professional Organizations


Adult Education Association of the USA, Cleveland President, 1928-1929

American Association for Adult Education, President, 1930-1931

American Judicature Society, President, 1930-1937

Board of Trustees of Cleveland College, President

Board of Trustees of John Hopkins University

Board of Trustees of Washington and Lee University

Board of Trustees of Western Reserve University, President, 1916

Carnegie Corporation of New York, Trustee

Cleveland Chamber of Commerce, President, 1922-1923

National Advisory Council on Radio in Education

National Commission on Law Enforcement and Observance, member, 1929

National Conference of Jews and Christians, Protestant co-chairman, 1928-1937

Permanent Court of Arbitration at the Hague, member appointed in 1928 by President Coolidge and reappointed by President Roosevelt, 1935

Woodrow Wilson Foundation, President, 1928-1931

Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity





Frontiers of freedom


Progress and the constitution


As a bystander sees it:  Some aspects of adult education



War in the modern world


Why we went to war


Newton Diehl Baker did not publish any books; however, all of the above are speeches that were printed into articles


Professional Interest Areas


Value of education for purposes of social change

vision of creating an institution for ex-soldiers and working adults to continue or further their education

Army (soldier) education

International relationships

Political Science


Major Contributions to Adult Education


Founding members in the American Association of Adult Education (AAAE)

Instrumental in founding Cleveland College

Committed to providing education to soldiers returning to civilian life

A strong advocate for adult education


Additional Resources



Photo Gallery





The official portrait of Baker by Edmund Hodgson Smart, 1921








Interesting Facts


Newton Diehl Baker was rejected for military service in the Spanish-American War because of poor eyesight.


Major quote:  “Education is fueled by the enthusiasm of the adult mind in search of intellectual growth, and this process continues through life.”





Beaver, Daniel R. (1966). Newton D. Baker and the American war effort: 1917-1919. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press.

Cramer, C. H. (1961). Newton D. Baker: A biography. New York, NY: World Publishing.

Hiemstra, R. (2002). Newton Diehl Baker Personal Vita.  Retrieved July 2, 2008 from http://www-distance.syr.edu/ndb.html

National Cyclopedia of American Biography. (1930). New York, NY:  James White.

NNDB. (n.d.). Newton D. Baker. Retrieved July 2, 2008 from http://www.nndb.com/people/535/000113196/

Rohfeld, R. W. (1986). Newton D. Baker and the adult education movement.  Ohio History, 95, 119-132.

Sobel, R. (1977). Biographical directory of the United States executive branch: 1774-1977.  Westport. CT: Greenwood Press.






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