Wood Lamp Timponogos by Owen Nelson Baker, Jr.
In the late 1950s, when my mother was my dad’s girlfriend, the two of them hiked to the peak of Mt. Timponogos in Utah. (Nelson and Lucille have been married for 54 years.) The 20-mile hike ends with optional slide down a steep, half-mile-long glacier. (I made the mistake of sliding down this glacier 60 years after they did. I slid so violently and fast, hitting dozens of rocks and holes on the way, that I thought I was going to die. My backside was black-and-blue for months!)
Owen Nelson Baker, Jr., my father, returned from that trip with a large piece of twisted root-wood on his shoulder. He sandblasted it clean and smooth, drilled it, wired it, stained it, mounted it, and switched on the light of this gorgeous wood lamp, which I have named Timponogos. The heavy iron base he hack-sawed off of an antique bird cage. The root-wood still contains a sizable stone around which the roots grew.
The antique oak table on which Timponogos rests was made by my father’s grandfather, also Nelson Baker, who was a machinist and mine foreman for the Prince gold mind in Pioche, Nevada.
Notice the solid brace construction.
I have decorated the Timponogos table top with antique tools made and used long ago by great-grandpa Nelson.
My father’s beautiful lamp, which I have admired all of my life, is the inspiration behind Baker Brothers Lamps, an enterprise in which I join my three younger sons–John, Caleb, and Hyrum–to make beautiful wood lamps that we sell to fund our attendance at the National Boy Scout Jamboree, and for their future college expenses. (Sorry to disappoint, but Timponogos is not for sale.)
Dad and the Baker Brothers on 9/11/2011
John, Dad, and Caleb coming home tired from the 2013 National Jamboree
We continue to enjoy making beautiful wood lamps together, the pictures and stories of which I will continue to post on this blog and offer for sale. Here are links to some of the lamps we have made thus so far. We hope you like them.