American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Mt. Marcus Baker (Mt. St. Agnes)

  • Notes
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1943


Mt. Marcus Baker (Mt. St. Agnes). The highest point (13,250 ft.) in the Chugach Mountains at the head of Prince William Sound, Alaska, appears alternately as Mt. Marcus Baker or Mt. St. Agnes on U. S. Government maps. The mountain was climbed by Bradford Washburn’s party in 1938. He referred to it as Mt. St. Agnes in subsequent written accounts. All authorities agree that the two names refer to the same identical point. An inquiry addressed to the U. S. Geological Survey in 1941 elicited the following reply from Mr. Philip S. Smith, Chief Alaskan Geologist:

Search of the Alaskan Branch records reveals no basis for the use of name Mt. St. Agnes, which appeared on the 1923 edition of the general map of Alaska issued by the Geological Survey. I can only assume that some member of the Branch may have intended to recommend that name and so placed it on the manuscript copy. However, the name was not submitted or administratively approved, and evidently slipped through unnoticed in the course of proof reading and publication of the map.

The Survey’s record shows that the name Marcus Baker was proposed by Alfred H. Brooks in a letter to the Director of the Geological Survey dated February 18, 1924. Mr. McCormick, in a memorandum of February 26, 1924, apparently questioned the desirability of this name, because of the number of geographic names already named for Marcus Baker. Brooks, however, pressed his original recommendation in a memorandum of February 29, 1924, and at a meeting of the Geographic Board on March 5, 1924, the name was officially adopted. Since that date, therefore, Mt. Marcus Baker has been the only name officially recognized for this mountain. You will find specific reference to the decision regarding the name Marcus Baker on page 501 of Vol. VI, U. S. Geographic Board for the Years 1890-1932.

The name, Mt. Marcus Baker, is used on the 1940 edition of

Alaska Map 25, the southerly sheet of the topographic map of the Alaska Railroad.

H. S. H. Jr.

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