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P.J. Walker Construction Company Photographs: Finding Aid
photCL 454  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Access
  • Administrative Information
  • Historical Note
  • Scope and Content
  • Related materials in the Huntington Library
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Overview of the Collection

    Title: P.J. Walker Construction Company Photographs
    Dates (inclusive): 1923-1987
    Bulk dates: 1923-1960
    Collection Number: photCL 454
    Creator: P.J. Walker Company
    Extent: 18 boxes
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Photo Archives
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: (626) 405-2191
    Email: reference@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: This collection contains photographic prints, film negatives, photo albums, company records, ephemera, and promotional material documenting construction jobs of the P.J. Walker Company, chiefly commercial buildings in the Los Angeles region from the early 1920s to the 1960s.
    Language: English.


    Open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, contact Reader Services.

    Administrative Information

    Publication Rights

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], P.J. Walker Construction Company Photographs, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.


    Gift of Fred C. Walker Jr., 1989.

    Historical Note

    The P.J. Walker Company was founded in San Francisco in 1895. It eventually became one of the largest construction firms in California. In the early 1920s, the P.J. Walker Company came to Los Angeles to construct the William Garland Building at 9th and Spring Street designed by Curlett and Beelman. Many other Southern California projects followed, including the Subway Terminal Building, the Richfield Oil building, Bullock's Wilshire, the Los Angeles Times building, the Doheny Library at the University of Southern California, the Stock Exchange Building and Title Guarantee and Trust buildings. Few builders had a greater impact on the region. In later years, the company was headquartered at 3900 Whiteside Street in Los Angeles, and Fred C. Walker, Jr. (died 2011) served as president.

    Scope and Content

    This collection contains photographic prints, film negatives, photo albums, company records, ephemera, and promotional material depicting construction jobs of the P.J. Walker Company, chiefly commercial buildings in the Los Angeles region from the early 1920s to the 1960s. Building types include office buildings, department stores, public utilities, industrial plants, university buildings, banks, hotels, and residences. Many of the construction projects are documented as 8 x 10 in. black-and-white progress photographs by local commercial photographers, and show the building process from the ground up over a period of months or years,. Several important architects are represented in the collection including Morgan, Walls & Clements, John and Donald Parkinson, Edward Durrell Stone, Walker & Eisen, George Kelham, and Gordon Kaufmann, to name a few.
    Identified photographers represented in the collection include: the "Dick" Whittington Studio; Dwyer Studios, L.A.; Green & Tillisch; and Mushet Photography.
    While the bulk of the collection consists of construction site photographs, there are also manuscripts and ephemera, which chiefly consist of cost reports, business correspondence, and miscellaneous ephemera and magazines and newspaper clippings related to the opening of the building. There is a small group of additional company records including job indexes, promotional booklets, and some photographs, film negatives, photo albums, company records, ephemera, and promotional material documenting construction jobs of the P.J. Walker Company, chiefly of commercial buildings in the Los Angeles region from the early 1920s to the 1960s.

    Related materials in the Huntington Library


    The collection is arranged in the following 3 series:
    • Job photographs (14 boxes)
    • Job manuscripts and ephemera (4 boxes)
    • P.J. Walker Company job lists, photographs, and ephemera (3 folders, 5 volumes)
    Oversize items are housed in separate boxes listed at the end of the Project photographs and manuscript and ephemera series.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Huntington Library's Online Catalog.  


    Bullock's (Department store) -- Photographs.
    Bullock's Wilshire (Department store) -- Photographs.
    California Clubs -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Coca-Cola Company -- Photographs.
    Douglas Aircraft Company -- Photographs.
    Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Los Angeles Branch -- Photographs.
    Four Seasons Biltmore (Santa Barbara, Calif.) -- Photographs.
    General Petroleum Company (San Francisco) -- Photographs.
    Huntington Memorial Hospital (Pasadena, Calif.) -- Photographs.
    Joseph Schlitz Brewing Company -- Photographs.
    Los Angeles Times (Firm) -- Buildings -- Photographs.
    Loyola University of Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Mobil Oil Corporation -- Photographs.
    Owens-Illinois Glass Company -- Photographs.
    P.J. Walker Company -- Archives.
    P.J. Walker Company -- Photographs.
    Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company -- Photographs.
    Southern California Edison Company -- Photographs.
    Southern California Telephone Co. -- Photographs.
    Standard Oil Company -- Photographs.
    Union Oil Company of California -- Photographs.
    University of California, Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    University of Southern California -- Photographs.
    Western and Southern Life Insurance Company -- Photographs.
    Architects and builders -- California -- Los Angeles -- Archives.
    Bank buildings -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Building sites -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    College buildings -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Commercial buildings -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Construction industry -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Contractors -- California -- Los Angeles -- Archives.
    Department stores -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Dwellings -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Dwellings -- California -- Pasadena -- Photographs.
    Hotels -- California -- Santa Barbara -- Photographs.
    Industrial buildings -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Restaurants -- California -- Los Angeles -- Photographs.
    Edwards Air Force Base (Calif.) -- Photographs.
    Los Angeles (Calif.) -- Buildings, structures, etc. -- Photographs.
    Long Beach (Calif.) -- Buildings, structures, etc. -- Photographs.
    March Air Force Base (Calif.) -- Photographs.
    Pasadena (Calif.) -- Buildings, structures, etc. -- Photographs.
    Santa Barbara -- Buildings, structures, etc. -- Photographs.


    Photograph albums.
    Color transparencies.
    Film negatives.
    Manuscripts -- California -- 20th century.


    Curlett, Aleck, architect.
    Becket, Welton, architect.
    Beelman, Claude, 1883-1963, architect.
    Bowen, Oliver G., architect.
    Clements, Robert, 1918-1987, architect.
    Clements, Stiles Oliver, 1883-1966, architect.
    Cleveland, Ron, -1987, architect.
    Coate, Roland E., architect.  
    Crawford, Rowland H., 1902-1973, architect.
    Denman, C. K., architect.
    Derrah, Robert V., 1895-1946, architect.
    Farquhar, Robert D., 1872-1967, architect.
    Heitschmidt, Earl T., 1894-1972
    Hobart, Lewis, P., architect.
    Johnson, C. Raimond, architect.
    Johnson, Reginald D., 1882-1952, architect.
    Kaufmann, Gordon B., architect.
    Kelham, George W. (George William), 1871-1936, architect.
    Lewis, P. P., 1885-1962, architect.
    Lippincott, Joseph Barlow, 1864-1942, architect.
    Lunden, Samuel E., architect.
    Martin, Albert C., 1879-1960, architect.
    Matcham, Charles, 1903-1980, architect.
    Montgomery, Ross Gordon, 1888-1969, architect.
    Morgan, Walls & Clements, architect.
    Munson, Arthur C., 1886-1969, architect.
    Parkinson, Donald B. (Donald Berthold), 1895-1945, architect.
    Parkinson, John, 1861-1935, architect.
    Rible, Ulysses Floyd, 1904-1982, architect.
    Roller, Albert, architect.
    Ruoff, Allen, 1894-1945, architect.
    Shelton, Jesse M. (Jesse Markham), architect.
    Stone, Edward Durell, architect.
    Taylor, Edward Cray, architect.
    Wing, Kenneth S., 1901-1986, architect.
    Wurdeman, Walter, 1903-1949, architect.
    Abbott, Merkt & Co., architect.
    Albert C. Martin and Associates, architect.
    Allison and Rible, Architects, architect.
    Austin, Field and Fry, architect.
    Bechtel Corporation, architect.
    Claud Beelman & Associates, architect.
    Clement Chen & Associates, architect.
    Cram and Ferguson, architect.
    Faxon, Gruys and Sayler, Architects, architect.
    Hamm, Grant & Bruner, architect.
    Harley, Ellington & Day, architect.
    Hunt and Chambers, Architects, architect.
    Langdon and Wilson, architect.
    Leach, Cleveland & Associates, architect.
    Parkinson, Powelson, Briney, Bernard & Woodford, architect.
    Pereira & Luckman, architect.
    Schultze & Weaver, architect.
    Taylor & Barnes, architect.
    Walker & Eisen, architect.
    William L. Pereira and Associates, architect.