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Bryant Baker

(1881 – 1970)

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Biography

Percy Bryant Baker (July 8, 1881 – March 29, 1970), better known as Bryant Baker, was a British born American sculptor. He sculpted a number of busts of famous Americans (including five presidents). In 1910, Queen Alexandra of the United Kingdom commissioned him to create a bust of King Edward VII.

In 1916, Baker emigrated to the United States, where he enlisted in the United States Army. He served during World War I in Army hospitals, crafting artificial limbs and face masks for wounded soldiers. He became a U.S. citizen in 1923.

In 1928, millionaire Oklahoma oilman E.W. Marland sponsored a $100,000 competition to create a statue honoring pioneering women of the American Old West. Baker won the design competition, and in 1930 his 27-foot (8.2 m) high, 12,000 pounds (5,400 kg) statue, Pioneer Woman was unveiled in Ponca City, Oklahoma. It became his best-known work. In 1957, Baker was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate member, and became a full member in 1959.