Mark Allen Baker

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Mark Allen Baker
Mark Allen Baker.jpg
Author Mark Allen Baker, Oxford, England, UK
Born Mark Allen Baker
(1957-03-27) March 27, 1957 (age 60)
Binghamton,New York, U.S.
Occupation Historian, author
Nationality American
Period 1990 – present
Genre Biography, History, Sports & Music
Notable works The Fighting Times of Abe Attell (2017), Battling Nelson, The Durable Dane (2016), Connecticut Families of the Revolution, American Forebears from Burr to Wolcott (2014), Spies of Revolutionary Connecticut: From Benedict Arnold to Nathan Hale (2014), Basketball History in Syracuse: Hoops Roots (2010), Title Town USA, Boxing in Upstate New York (2010), Rock ‘n’ Roll Memorabilia (1997)
Notable awards For Outstanding Preservation and Promotion of American History, Daughters of the American Revolution (2015)
Spouse Alison Long Baker
Children Three

Mark Allen Baker (born 27 March 1957), is a former business executive, and American author, biographer, and writer of hundreds of articles and 20 books[1].

Born in Binghamton, New York and raised in Virginia Beach, Virginia and central New York, Baker graduated from Fayetteville-Manlius High School before earning a B.A. from the State University of New York at Oswego. His first book, Baseball Autograph Handbook (1990),[1] addressed the growing interest in the sport of baseball and its artifacts, even earning him a Lifetime Donor Membership to National Baseball Hall of Fame & Museum. The author has since written nearly two dozen nonfiction titles, including two biographies, on such topics as sports, music and American history.

Expertise in the area of historic manuscripts and artifacts, along with investigative research, have enhanced Baker's passion for history-his later works have placed a greater emphasis on regional events and biography. While passionate about his primary subjects, the author has also written many articles in the areas of antiques, art, entertainers, computer graphics, finance, forensic science and music.

Life and career[edit]

His fascination with history, and historical artifacts, began as a child-as a result of a sixth grade school project-and grew from a simple celebrity autograph to major historical collections. "We collect celebrity autographs to preserve a moment, and to remind us of the human spirit that succeeds despite adversity," he explained to Daily Celebrations.

Baker, a graduate from Fayetteville-Manlius High School, attended the State University of New York at Oswego. During his undergraduate work he was active in the central New York music scene promoting or assisting with over fifty shows including: Aerosmith, Boston, Peter Gabriel, Genesis, Billy Joel, Kiss, John Mayall, Queen, Bob Seger and Bruce Springsteen.[2] His post graduate work centered on digital imaging for his employer, the General Electric Corporation - Genigraphics Division(Microsoft PowerPoint). When General Electric sold their Genigraphics (computer-graphics) division to a group of venture capitalists, Baker stayed with the new corporation. There he held a variety of positions including Trainer, Program Manager, Art Director, Marketing Research Manager and Executive Assistant to the CEO. [3]

Baker has also been the co-owner of numerous businesses-while employed by the Genigraphics Corporation- including "Bleachers" of Liverpool, New York - an 8,000 sq ft (740 m2). sports bar and museum. Opened in 1990, the restaurant hosted many famous and diverse events from a reception for "Stars on Ice" featuring Scott Hamilton and Debbie Thomas to a Monday Night radio show hosted by Mike Tirico. Tirico hosted his first show from WAER radio in Syracuse, NY, the radio station where he started this sports broadcasting career, on the campus of Syracuse University. During the NFL football season it was broadcast live from Bleachers prior to Monday Night Football.

Baker decided to leave the Genigraphics Corporation shortly after their acquisition by Pansophic Systems, Incorporated, a Lisle, Illinois software firm.

Writing career[edit]

Mark Allen Baker in Austria

While employed by the Genigraphics Corporation, Baker began writing and illustrating technical articles, trade periodicals and books.[3] This led to columns in other fields and even his first book. His diverse interests is perhaps best exemplified by the individuals who have contributed Introductions to his numerous books including: Joe Sewell (Baseball Hall of Fame, Lou Gehrig's roommate), Max Patkin (Cleveland Indians coach, Clown Prince of Baseball, actor "Bull Durham"),[4] and Kermit "Shine" Forbes (Ernest Hemingway's boxing sparring partner ). Additional contributors have also included: Charles Gehringer (Baseball Hall of Fame), A. Bartlett Giamatti (Baseball), Bobby Doerr (Baseball Hall of Fame), Jeff Gordon (Racing), Paul Newman (Actor, Racing), Mario Andretti (Racing) and Andrew Wyeth (Art).

The author's numerous radio appearances have included: Bridgeport, CT (WICC), New York, NY (WFAN), Santa Rosa, CA (KXXY), Syracuse, NY (WSEN, WHEN), and Tampa, FL (WNBA). As a television guest he has been seen on Metro TV, New York, NY and numerous local channels. Following his 1997 book, Goldmine's Price Guide to Rock & Roll Memorabilia[11], he appeared as a co-host on the VH-1 series Rock Collectors. As a speaker, Baker has attended many events including the Hemingway Days Festival & Writers Conference in Key West, Florida.

From 2007 until 2010 Baker was Editor for "The Pen & Quill,"[14] a journal for historical manuscripts.

Gaining recognition[edit]

Since 2010, Baker has turned his interest to regional history with the release of four titles:

The award nominated Title Town, USA, Boxing in Upstate New York, published by The History Press examines the rich history of Boxing in central New York.[5] [15] It is the first book to truly establish this region as the epicenter of pugilism. The book's foreword was written by Edward P. Brophy, Executive Director of the International Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota, New York.

In October 2010, the author released Basketball History in Syracuse, Hoops Roots, also published by The History Press. The book is an introduction to professional basketball in Syracuse and includes teams like (Vic Hanson's) All-Americans, the Syracuse Reds and the Syracuse Nationals (1946–1963). Contributions to the work include over a dozen former NBA players, along with members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

In "Spies of Revolutionary Connecticut: From Benedict Arnold to Nathan Hale", Baker's first book of 2014, he introduces readers to the role the state played in intelligence gathering during the American Revolution.[6] From coded messages and invisible ink, to early submarines with the first exploding torpedoes, the book incorporates chapters on: Ethan Allen, Benedict Arnold, Edward Bancroft, David Bushnell, Enoch Crosby, Silas Deane, Nathan Hale, Thomas Knowlton, Ezra Lee and even The Culper Ring. Lesser-known spies are also included, such as Dr. Samuel Adams, James Aitken, Daniel Bissell, John Clark, William Heron, Solomon Jones, Nehemiah Marks, and Noah Phelps.[7] With this release, Baker tops the 6,000 published book page plateau.

"So he's (George Washington) not going into the Revolution blind; this is an experienced leader who knows about covert intelligence and he's going to use it to his advantage."

– Mark Allen Baker, Connecticut Magazine

"Connecticut Families of the Revolution, American Forebears from Burr to Wolcott", Baker's second book of 2014, takes readers inside of the homes of the state's most patriotic families. The work features the relatives of: Oliver Ellsworth, Nathan Hale, David Humphreys, Samuel Huntington, William Samuel Johnson, Samuel Holden Parsons, Samuel Peters, Sarah Pierce, Israel Putnam, Tapping Reeve, Roger Sherman, Benjamin Tallmadge, Jonathan Trumbull, Noah Webster, Oliver Wolcott, and David Wooster. Women, such as Eunice Burr, Lucretia Shaw, Mary Silliman, and Elizabeth Hull are also featured for their valuable contribution to the American Revolution.

Currently a contributing writer to numerous periodicals, including Goldmine magazine,[8] Baker has focused much of his recent attention on music. This, along with his passion for regional history-the author has also spoken at many historical sites including the Nathan Hale Scoolhouse in New London, Connecticut and even given the 2015 Keynote Address at the annual meeting of the Norwich Historical Society inside the Slater Memorial Museum in Norwich, Connecticut-has occupied a bulk of his recent time. On May 16, 2015, Baker was awarded a certificate of appreciation "For Outstanding Preservation and Promotion of American History" by the Connecticut Daughters of the American Revolution. The organization Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) is a lineage-based membership service organization for women who are directly descended from a person involved in United States' independence.

Biographies[edit]

Turning his focus toward biography in 2016, Baker released, Battling Nelson, The Durable Dane. It is the author's eighteenth book and his first biography for McFarland & Company. The incredible story of Oscar Battling Matthew Nelson is a "rags, to riches, to rags" tale. As the toughest and most durable professional boxer ever to enter a ring, Battling Nelson held the World Lightweight Championship from 1908 until 1910. Inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1992, Battling Nelson is often recalled for his boxing trilogy with Joe Gans which is still considered one of the greatest in sports history. Garnering significant interest, the author will neither confirm nor deny cinematic attention in the work.

With the release of this book, Baker holds the distinction of being the only person to serve the International Boxing Hall of Fame as an author, historian, chairperson, sponsor, volunteer and biographer.

Author Mark Allen Baker will release his second biography in 2017 about International Boxing Hall of Fame inductee Abe Attell

The author's nineteenth book, The Fighting Times of Abe Attell, will be published in the spring of 2017. Known for his record-setting, six year consecutive reign as World Featherweight Champion from 1906-1912, Abraham Washington Attell (1883-1970) was among the cleverest, most scientific professional boxers ever to enter the ring. Attell's success inspired his brothers Caesar and Monte to take up the sport—Abe and Monte both held simultaneous world titles for a time. This first ever biography covers Attell's life and career. Growing up poor and Jewish in a predominantly Irish neighborhood, he faced his share of adversity and anti-Semitism in and out of the ring. He was charged for alleged involvement in the 1919 Black Sox Scandal. The charges were dropped but Attell was branded by association for the remainder of his life. The release of this work will give the author over the 7,000 published pages in book form.

During the third week in January 2017, The Fighting Times of Abe Attell hit #1 on Amazon’s List of Hot New Releases in Boxer Biographies.

The author has recently confirmed that his twentieth work will be a photography book that will be released in the fall of 2017.

Personal life[edit]

Mark Allen Baker lives in Hartford, Connecticut area. He has three children : Aaron (b. 1985), Elizabeth (b. 1986) and Rebecca (b. 1990).

Selected Books[edit]

Biography[edit]

National and Regional History[edit]

Reference and Popular Culture[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Baker, Mark (1990). Baseball Autograph Handbook (First ed.). Iola, WI: Krause Publications. p. 288. ISBN 0-87341-125-0. 
  2. ^ Humphries/Hunt, Patrick/Chris (1985). Springsteen, Blinded by the Light (First ed.). London, UK: Plexus Publishing Lmited. p. 86. ISBN 0-85965-086-3. 
  3. ^ Lewell, John (1983). Computer graphics. NY, NY: Van Nostrand and Reinhold. 
  4. ^ Baker, Mark (1992). Team Baseballs. Iola, WI: Krause Publications. pp. Introduction. ISBN 0-87341-316-4. 
  5. ^ Baker, Mark (2010). Title Town, USA, Boxing in Upstate New York. Charleston, NC: The History Press. p. 160. ISBN 978-1-59629-769-2. Retrieved 2014-07-18. 
  6. ^ Baker, Mark (April 2014). "Spring Book Report, This Spring Sees The Publication of Five Books with Strong Connecticut Historical Connection" (Doctors). Connecticut Magazine. 
  7. ^ Bendici, Ray (April 2014). "AMC's 'Turn' Features Connecticut Spies of the American Revolution" (History). Connecticut Magazine. Retrieved 2014-07-18. 
  8. ^ Baker, Mark (February 2000). "Live Throwing Platinum". Goldmine Magazine (Live (cover story)). Krause Publications.