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Father Divine
Original name: George Baker
Birth: 1876
Montgomery County
Maryland, USA
Death: Sep. 10, 1965
Montgomery County
Pennsylvania, USA

Minister. Born George Baker in Rockville, Maryland he was the son of recently freed slaves. Around 1920 he founded what would become his legacy, the International Peace Mission. Early in his ministry he had started being known as "Father Divine" but later he took on his full self given name, Reverend Major Jealous Divine. Around this time he also made claims of being "God". This garnered much criticism from the outside world and lead to his imprisonment. Upon release, Father Divine and his followers moved to Sayville, New York in 1919 and remained there for 12 years before migrating to Harlem in 1932. Here he was able to accumulate a substantial following in the black community as well as great wealth. Father Divine's comfortable lifestyle allowed him to purchase several hotels, which he called Heavens. He allowed members to live and seek jobs inexpensively. The movement also opened several budget enterprises including restaurants and clothing shops. By the mid 1930's he had opened branches of the movement in Los Angeles, California, and Seattle, Washington, and gatherings occurred in France, Switzerland, Canada, and Australia. Around 1942 he moved his headquarters to Woodmont Estate in Gladwyne, Pennsylvania. It is estimated that he had nearly 2 million followers, but the true figure is unknown. He stayed there until his death in 1965 and was buried on the grounds of his estate. Father Divine was a very significant part of the early civil rights movement although he opposed the labels associated with race. The infamous cult leader Jim Jones tried to take over the movement in 1971 after Baker's death. Jones claimed to be the reincarnation of Father Divine. (bio by: Dione Wilson) 
Family links: 
  Mother Divine (1925 - 2017)*
*Calculated relationship
Shrine to Life at Woodmont
Montgomery County
Pennsylvania, USA
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Jan 01, 2001
Find A Grave Memorial# 285
Father Divine
Added by: Dione Wilson
Father Divine
Added by: quebecoise
Father Divine
Added by: Chotsie Kelly
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