Lucy Margaret Baker

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Baker, Lucy Margaret
Lucy Margaret Baker ca 1870.jpg
Personal details
Born 1836
Died 30 May 1909
Profession Teacher, missionary
Religion Presbyterian Church

Lucy Baker (1836 – 30 May 1909) was the first female teacher and missionary in present-day Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. She pioneered the development of the western Canadian settlement.[1]

Life and career[edit]

Baker was born in Summertown, Glengarry County, Ontario,[1] and raised from a young age by her aunt.[2] She became a teacher shortly after finishing school in Fort Covington, New York.

Her teaching career was as varied as it was wide-ranging. She first worked in Dundee, then held classes in New Jersey for a women's school. She moved to New Orleans not long afterwards to co-own another women's school just before the American Civil War. In 1878, she returned to Glengarry County to teach a private school.

In 1879, minister Donald Ross asked Baker to teach at a missionary school in Prince Albert, on behalf of the Presbyterian church. She accepted the offer, and trekked cross-country to arrive at the western territory in 1879. She earned a permanent teaching grant at the mission school in 1880.

In 1890, Baker relocated to the Makoce Washte reserves in present-day South Dakota, where she served as chief instructor at a school for Sioux refugees. She learned to speak Sioux, and regularly spoke Mass (Christianity) in the refugee's native language.[3] She remained teaching at Makoce Washte until her retirement in 1905.


  1. ^ a b "Lucy Margaret Baker fonds - SAIN Collections". Saskatchewan Archival Information Network. Retrieved 2015-09-15. 
  2. ^ "Biography - BAKER, LUCY MARGARET.". Dictionary of Canadian Biography. Retrieved 2015-09-15. 
  3. ^ Byers, Elizabeth (1920). Lucy Margaret Baker: A Biographical Sketch of the First Missionary of Our Canadian Presbyterian Church to the North-West Indians. Toronto, Canada: Women's Missionary Society of the Presbyterian Church in Canada. p. 12.