Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138
Wellesley College, 106 Central St, Wellesley, MA 02481
Guy Warren Walker, Jr. (April 11, 1897 - April 18, 1978) was a member of the Horace Walpole Society, elected in 1953. He was a financier and collector.
Guy Warren Walker, Jr., financier and collector, was born April 11, 1897, in West Newton, Massachusetts, the son of Guy Warren Walker and Alice Morgan Coxe. After prep-aration at St. Mark's School, he matriculated at Harvard College. His studies were interrupted by wartime service as an army private and corporal in France, but he returned to college in 1919 and graduated with his class in 1920 with a wartime A.B. degree (honoris causa).
Shortly after commencement, Walker went to work for the Chase National Bank in New York. The next year, in October 1921, he returned home to work as a bond salesman in the investment banking firm founded by his father, G. W. Walker and Company. He remained with the company (eventually becoming a partner) until April 1942 when he entered service in his Second World War. He served in the latter conflict as a captain, major, and lieutenant colonel in the Army Air Force.
Walker chose not to return to the family investment firm after the war, but became instead the treasurer of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities (SPNEA). He kept his hand in business as chairman of the board of the Galveston-Houston Company, a director of both the Fort Worth Transit Company and the Hollingsworth & Vose Company, and as an inactive member of the Boston Stock Exchange.
Walker's collecting interests ran at first, he once wrote, to "Americana of the Colonial and early Federal periods—furniture, silver, ceramics and glass—rounding out a collection started by my father in 1900." Election to the American Antiquarian Society came at the semiannual meeting in 1954. He was not especially active in the Society, attending only seven meetings in the quarter century he was on its rolls. He was as well a member of the Club of Odd Volumes, the Walpole Society, and the Essex Institute of Salem, among other associations.
In later years, Walker dispersed his collection of Americana through gift and sale and he began buying objects in Spain, where he spent six months of each year. Within the last decade, he became interested as well in the graphic arts.
Guy Warren Walker died April 18, 1978, after a long illness. He is survived by his second wife, the former Leila S. Stevens, whom he married in 1960, and a daughter, Judith W. Mixtell, by his first marriage, to the former Nancy Sturgis Vose, who died in 1959.
On deposit since 1981 from the St. Mark's School in Southborough, Massachusetts, the Guy Warren Walker, Jr. Collection at Wellesley College consists of 384 volumes documenting the history of book illustration. The most beautiful and significant specimens of each century are here assembled to demonstrate the use of various media and styles in the printed book. From early illuminated manuscripts to twentieth century livres de peintre, the Guy Walker, Jr. Collection complements the Book Arts Collection.
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