Baker, Henry Edward(born: 1922 - died: 2014)
Reverend Henry E. Baker was a civil rights activist, a pastor, and a city commissioner in Winchester, KY. The Henry E. Baker Intermediate School, dedicated on August 3, 2014, was named in his honor.
For 38 years (1955-1993) he was pastor of the Broadway Baptist Church. In 1977, he was elected the moderator of the Consolidated District Association of Kentucky Baptists. In 1978, he established a fund drive for Elizabeth Greene who was blinded on August 4, 1978 when an unknown person fired into her car and the bullet struck her in the head ["Fund drive," Kentucky New Era, 12/28/1978, p. 29]. He was chair of the Winchester Human Rights Commission. And he was among those who helped integrate the Winchester schools in 1956.
In 1979, Rev. Baker became the first African American to serve as a city commissioner in Winchester, also serving as vice mayor from 1980-1984. In 2000, he was inducted into the Kentucky Human Rights Commission Civil Rights Hall of Fame. In 2006, the block in Winchester between Washington Street and Broadway was renamed from Bell's Alley to Reverend Baker Way. Reverend Baker also received the Martin Luther King Jr. Award in 2007.
Reverend Henry E. Baker was born in The Pocket in Wilmore, KY, the son of Mary E. Overstreet Baker (1894-1985) and Henry Baker (1890-1973) [source: Ms. Hallie Miller; Kentucky Birth Index; and 1930 and 1940 U.S. Federal Census]. Rev. Baker was the husband of Sarah F. Prentice Baker for 69 years. He was a World War II veteran, having enlisted in Cincinnati, OH, April 16, 1943 [source: U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records]. He was the brother of Fred Baker.
For a photograph of Rev. Baker and more informataion, see the Clark County (KY) Public Library's Black History Month page; and see his obituary at the Scobee Funeral Home website.
This entry was submitted by Ms. Hallie Miller.