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Baker, Alice (1855–1935)

Widespread regret was expressed yesterday at the death, which occurred at her home in Rockley road, South Yarra, on Wednesday, of Mrs Alice Baker, CBE, widow of the late Mr Thomas Baker, former chief managing director of Kodak (Australasia) Pty Ltd.

Mrs Baker, who was formerly Miss Alice Shaw, of Sydney, was associated with many women's public institutions, and took a responsible part in many important activities. In 1920, through the beneficence of the late Mr Thomas Baker, his wife, and his sister-in-law (Miss E. M. Shaw), the Thomas Baker, Alice Baker, and Eleanor Shaw Medical Research Institute was established at the Alfred Hospital. It has since carried on invaluable work in the advancement of medical science in Australia. Mr Baker had offered to bear the cost of maintaining a laboratory for a period of five years. The total amount involved in this magnificent gift was £20,000, or at least £3,500 a year.

On January 1, 1933, Mrs Baker was included in the list of New Year honours conferred by His Majesty the King as a Commander of the Order of the British Empire. In her many public activities she was associated with the National Council of Women in Victoria. She represented Australia at two conferences—one at Washington and one at Rome. The Women's Hospital and the Talbot Colony for Epileptics at Clayton were two of the Institutions which had benefited greatly through Mrs Baker's generosity, which had been to a much greater extent anonymous than public.

The cremation yesterday at Fawkner was attended by many leading citizens. The chief mourner was Mr A. C. Shaw and among others present were Major General Grimwade and Colonel J. H. P. Eller. The Rev. E. I. Gason, of St Peters, Mornington, where Mrs Baker formerly resided, conducted a service at Sleight’s chapel and also at the crematorium. The pall-bearers were Sir Walter Leitch, Mr P. D. Michaelis, Dr. Mackeddie, Dr A. J. Trinca, and Messrs John Turnbull, T. C. Gates, R. H. Wilkins, and J. Sutherland.

Original publication

Additional Resources

  • probate, Argus (Melbourne), 31 May 1935, p 8

Citation details

'Baker, Alice (1855–1935)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/baker-alice-16288/text28235, accessed 29 May 2017.

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