The other day I posted about Major General Hugh Scott’s month as Woodrow Wilson’s interim Secretary of War. One hundred years ago today Newton Baker was sworn in as the full-time secretary. Baker was an excellent choice and he served President Wilson well for the next five years. I uploaded this to the Strawfoot Facebook page this morning, but over at Roads to the Great War they uploaded my article about Secretary Baker. I have always found it odd that Baker is not better known today than he is. I think it may have to do with his break with Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the 1930s over the New Deal. The Democrats seem to have written Baker off. Also, Baker died in 1937 when Europe was getting ready for Round Two. By this time the world was focused on the rise of Hitler, Mussolini’s taking of Ethiopia, and the Japanese threat in the Pacific. By 1945 the WW1 generation must have seemed entirely anachronistic to most Americans.
The Baker piece was the second of a two part series. If you didn’t see it, here is the link to the piece about the February 1916 resignation of Baker’s predecessor, Lindley M. Garrison.
(image/Library of Congress)