A 7th generation Louisianan, Harold's forebears arrived in South Louisiana from Saint-Domingue over 200 years ago as French citizens and free people of color. He was born in Charity Hospital, grew up in Treme and in the Seventh Ward; a life-long New Orleanian.
As a young man, Baquet built his first darkroom and plunged into the profession as an independent photojournalist. A few years later, he became the official photographer to the Mayor of the City of New Orleans, he held the position of City Photographer, from 1984 to 1989 under the late Ernest N. Morial and then Sidney J. Barthelemy.
In 1989, he became Loyola’s University Photographer and has been telling the campus’s story in photographs ever since. Befitting his many contributions and his dedication to the university’s mission, Loyola presented him with three of its highest awards: the Coadjutor Optimus in 2002, the Saint Sebastian Award in 2008 and the President’s Medal in 2010.
In 2010, along with his wife; Cheron Brylski; A&S 80, Harold co-wrote and published “In the Blink of an Eye”; Photographic memories of a New Orleans no more, which included a corresponding lecture and exhibition in the Collins C. Diboll Art Gallery. In April 2012, to commemorate Loyola New Orleans’ Centennial Year, he presented a discussion of images from the University Archive titled: “Loyola’s Photographic Treasures.”