Art Baker (actor)

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Art Baker
Born Arthur Shank
(1898-01-07)January 7, 1898
New York City, New York, USA
Died August 26, 1966(1966-08-26) (aged 68)
Los Angeles, California, USA
Resting place Forest Lawn Memorial Park
Occupation Film, television and radio actor
Years active 1937–66

Art Baker (born Arthur Shank; January 7, 1898 – August 26, 1966) was an American film, television and radio actor of the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s and 1960s.

Born in New York City, he was best known for his radio and television work, which began in the mid-1930s. On September 8, 1938, he began "Art Baker's Notebook" on Los Angeles' KFI radio station, which lasted for two decades. The program was syndicated to other stations via electrical transcription.[1]

Baker appeared in over forty films including:

His tall, slim frame, snow white hair, smooth slightly nasal voice and genial nature made him a natural choice to play business executives, doctors, and senators in film. Baker grew up in New York and, after working at a number of different jobs, eventually became an actor.

He had four children, Virginia, who died of TB, Arthur (Bart), Robert and Dorothy, all by his first wife. The family lived in Iowa.


Baker is best known for his work on a television series he created, titled You Asked For It (for which he became affectionately dubbed, the "genie with the light, white hair") between December 1950 and January 1958. It was originally named "The Art Baker Show", but the title was changed in April, 1951. During the last 20 months of the show, Baker was replaced by Jack Smith.

Another Baker TV program, End of the Rainbow, debuted January 11, 1958. The program helped unsuspecting people "who are in need of a push to make a success of their dreams, such as a chance to regain a sound footing in business..."[2]

Hollywood Walk of Fame[edit]

Baker has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his work in radio. The star, at 6509 Hollywood Boulevard, was dedicated February 8, 1960.[3]


Baker died of a heart attack at a bank in Los Angeles August 26, 1966.[4] He was survived by his wife, a daughter, and two stepsons.[5]


  1. ^ Dunning, John. (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3. P. 42.
  2. ^ Wade, Tom (January 11, 1958). "Popular Art Baker Emcees New Series". Pasadena Independent. p. 12. Retrieved September 3, 2015 – via  open access publication - free to read
  3. ^ "Art Baker". Hollywood Walk of Fame. Retrieved 4 September 2015. 
  4. ^ "Actor Art Baker Collapses, Dies". Independent. August 27, 1966. p. 8. Retrieved September 3, 2015 – via  open access publication - free to read
  5. ^ "Actor Art Baker Dies". The Kansas City Times. August 27, 1966. p. 21. Retrieved September 3, 2015 – via  open access publication - free to read

External links[edit]