Papers of Aloha Baker, 1918-1932

Baker, Aloha


10 boxes.
5 linear ft.
Organized into the following series: I. Aloha Baker bound collection; II. Collection overview and the Wanderwell family; III. The "Million Dollar Wager" and other travels; IV. Work Around the World Educational Club.
Chronicles the travel adventures of her husband, Walter Wanderwell beginning with his adventures as a seaman and later his around the world automobile trips. Includes, in Polish, experiences aboard the Norwegian schooner Cambuskenneth, the day it was sunk by a German U39 during World War I, and other naval experiences. Documents the Million Dollar Wager, a competitive auto race around the world, the outcome determined by who could visit the most countries. Other subjects covered are the Bororo, a Brazilian Indian tribe, the Descalvados Ranch in Brazil, and the automotive speed slope design (or "fastback") patented by Wanderwell. Collection includes postcards sent by Wanderwell from around the world, negatives and photographs documenting the countries visited during the Million Dollar Wager, and official documents of the Work Around the World Educational Club, plus materials on his efforts to establish an international police force.
Walter Wanderwell was born Valerian Pieczynski in Toruniou, Poland on Nov. 27, 1895. He worked as a seaman before coming to the United States where he developed a fascination with the automobile. Aloha Baker became his second wife after working as a translator during a four-year European trip made by Wanderwell and his first wife, Nell. He died on Nov. 7, 1932 at age 36. Aloha W. Baker died on June 4, 1996.
Aloha Baker Collection, National Automotive History Collection, Detroit Public Library.
Finding aid available in library.

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