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Bush. Williams said “neither has required hospitalization,” after testing positive for the virus. He earned a law degree from the University of Texas at Austin in 1957 and then joined a major Houston law firm, eventually becoming a partner in it. As Bush was networking his way around Washington, Baker was settled into a life of comfortable privilege in Houston. . His father’s ambition to bring him into Baker Botts was foiled by an anti-nepotism rule that the partners refused to waive. Mary Stuart was the politically active member of the family, an Ohio Republican among the Southern Democrats. And 1961. He had practiced for years at the Houston firm Andrews Kurth but told his cousin that he “didn’t want to spend his whole life on oil and gas leases.” So when his friend George H. W. Bush was looking around for a successor to run for his House seat while he mounted a bid for the Senate, Baker was intrigued. His son James A. Baker Jr. was called Captain Baker for his time in the Houston Light Guards, a uniformed company of the state’s National Guard formed by Confederate veterans after Reconstruction, even though he never saw action of any kind. His only real involvement in politics was largely tangential. The Bakers of Texas had always been lawyers, and they passed the profession down to their sons along with the name—and the burden of living up to it. He billed his son if he drank more than one soda at the club. The art museum and the city’s leading service charity were established by his grandparents. Can They Come Back Tuesday? Not the Warden. Get our weekly newsletter, filled with good reads, news analysis—and updates on special events. “It was just a wonderful love affair,” remembered David Paton, one of Baker’s Princeton roommates. “The medication was barbaric. Copyright 2020 by KPRC Click2Houston - All rights reserved. James Baker, American government official, political manager, and lawyer who occupied important posts in the Republican presidential administrations of the 1980s and early ’90s, including that of U.S. secretary of state (1989–92). But he earned national renown for his role in “America’s most remarkable murder case” after one of his longtime clients, the plutocrat and philanthropist William Marsh Rice, suddenly died in New York. James Baker, in full James Addison Baker III, (born April 28, 1930, Houston, Texas, U.S.), American government official, political manager, and lawyer who occupied important posts in the Republican presidential administrations of the 1980s and early ’90s, including that of U.S. secretary of state (1989–92). Baker met Mary Stuart McHenry during a spring break trip to Bermuda in his sophomore year at Princeton, spotting her at a party on the beach. He may not have told her what he knew—what he had shared with George Bush in that letter months earlier—but she understood how dire her condition was. In the mid-2000s Baker was active on a number of government investigative committees; he served as cochair of both the Federal Commission on Election Reform (with former president Jimmy Carter) and the Iraq Study Group (with former U.S. congressman Lee Hamilton). “George, Mary Stuart does not know her true prognosis,” he confided. Rejoice—and come to me someday.”. Democrats Have Poured Money Into a Long Shot Bid to Defeat Rising GOP Star Dan Crenshaw, The Unlikely Candidate Who Might Flip a Republican Stronghold, Willie Nelson Singing ‘Under Pressure’ With Karen O Is the Duet We Didn’t Know We Needed in 2020, How Jerry Jeff Walker Helped Put Jimmy Buffett on the Road to ‘Margaritaville’, The List: The Top 50 Barbecue Joints in Texas, Texas Is Screwed More by the Electoral College Than Any Other State, Despite Our Size, Texas Will Be Turning Blue Any Second Now, Recipe: Truth Barbeque’s Triple Chocolate Cake, Olympic Protester Tommie Smith Reclaims His Legacy in a New Documentary. He took a job as an oil field equipment salesman for Dresser Industries, on whose board his father sat. By the time Bush made the five-hundred-mile move to Houston in 1959 and enrolled his oldest son, George W., at the Kinkaid School, which Baker had attended, he was president of his own small oil firm, Zapata Off-Shore Company. Meet the Harris County Voters Who Showed Up After Midnight to Cast a Ballot. . He resigned his post as secretary of state in 1992 in order to serve as White House chief of staff while simultaneously directing Bush’s unsuccessful reelection campaign. Also next to 1959. While fighting for the South during the Civil War, Baker was elected judge and eventually moved to Houston, where he joined a law firm founded by two other Confederate veterans, Peter Gray and Walter Browne Botts. Otherwise, he could hardly be bothered. The checks were often accompanied by notes with the dry, impersonal tone of a lawyer communicating with another lawyer rather than a father with a son. He served as Secretary of State during the Bush administration. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. A secret that big creates a bond as nothing else will. And number two, I’m a Democrat.”, “Well,” Bush said, “we can take care of that latter problem.”. His memoir, Work Hard, Study…and Keep Out of Politics!, was published in 2006. Corrections? At Christmas, the Bushes would invite the Bakers over for cocktails. How the Texas GOP Went Off the Rails in 2020. On Baker’s twenty-ninth birthday, his father sent a check for $50 and a typewritten cover page. After his father retired, Bush wanted to go to Washington too, mounting a losing challenge against Texas senator Ralph Yarborough in 1964. The son of a prosperous Houston attorney, Baker graduated from Princeton University in 1952 and then spent two years in the U.S. Marine Corps. Growing up in Dayton, Mary Stuart had been friends with Teensie Bush, a cousin of George. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/biography/James-Baker, U.S. Department of State - Office of the Historian - Biography of James Addison III Baker, Miller Center - Biography of James A. Baker, James Addison Baker - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). George H. W. Bush (center left) and Baker (center right), with two unidentified men on the White House tennis courts during Ronald Reagan’s presidency, in the eighties. Updates? But Baker told Bush he was interested anyway and began sounding out possible donors and supporters. He was previously married to Mary Stuart McHenry. “You ran a great race against almost overwhelming odds. Enter your email below to send a password reset email. “My dear George,” he wrote. Jamie and Mike Baker were roughly around the same age as Jeb, Neil, and Marvin Bush. Announcing our NEW encyclopedia for Kids! His first home in Texas was a rented two-room duplex in Odessa, where the family had to share a bathroom with a mother-and-daughter prostitute team next door. As it was, George was already using Baker Botts for legal work for his oil exploration firm. The son of a prosperous Houston attorney, Baker graduated from Jimmy’s friends “were a little bit afraid” of his dad, recalled one, Wallace Stedman Wilson. The next James A. Baker, who also ended up being known as Junior, really did fight in combat, serving in the trenches of France under General “Black Jack” Pershing during World War I and at one point capturing three German soldiers singlehandedly. “And he took that as being an answer to prayer.”. In 1970 Baker’s longtime friend George Bush asked him to run Bush’s political campaign for the U.S. Senate. When he got old enough to go to school, Jimmy attended the city’s most prestigious private academy; his father, naturally, was chairman of the board. The Cuban Missile Crisis, the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the Vietnam War, the civil rights movement—Baker’s letters from the time refer to none of them, nor would he summon strong memories of them later in life. Bush and Baker first met through a small-world connection involving Mary Stuart. He was born at Houston’s Baptist Hospital on April 28, 1930, the son of James A. Baker Jr. and his wife, the elegant society hostess Bonner Means Baker. He was a “stern disciplinarian,” as young Jimmy Baker’s cousin Preston Moore put it. His grandfather had warned him to “work hard, study, and keep out of politics,” a family rule going back to the Civil War. Mary Stuart developed a red spot on her breast. If Jimmy did not wake up by 7 a.m. on a Saturday, his father would splash cold water on him. Sorry, we’re unable to find an account with that username and password. The Warden dictated everything about his early path in life, sending Baker east to his own alma maters, the Hill School, in Pennsylvania, and then Princeton University.

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