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22 May 2013

The Legacy of Florence Walter at The Book Club of California

Jane Hufft, Bill O'Neil and I had the pleasure of attending the exhibit opening of "The Legacy of Florence Walter: Celebrating a Century" on Monday, April 29, 2013. We were invited by Henry Snyder, CGS Library Committee Chair and member of our board of directors. Henry also happens to hold the same titles at The Book Club of California where the exhibit is on display through the summer.

Florence Schwartz Walter (1884-1972)
The Legacy of Florence Walter: Celebrating a Century features forty-five exquisite book bindings by one of San Francisco’s most celebrated artists in this genre. The exhibit was curated by Kathleen Burch and John McBride.

Florence Walter was prominent in social and cultural circles in San Francisco for decades. She had a notable collection of Asian art was also a professional bookbinder, described as "one of the finest bookbinders in the French style working in the United States."

Walter joined The Book Club of California in 1913  and was the first woman elected to the board and its first woman president.

The exhibition was made possible by three of the grandchildren of Walter who donated the bindings and related ephemera to the Book Club for its Florence Walter Collection. Several members of the family were present and spoke at the opening.

The exhibition also includes examples of Walter’s work from other sources. It is the largest collection of the work of Florence Walter in an institution.
The Legacy of Florence Walter: Celebrating a Century runs through August 26, 2013.

The Book Club of California, located at 312 Sutter Street, Suite 500, San Francisco, is a non-profit organization of people who take pleasure in fine printing related to the history and literature of California and the Western states. They help further the interests of book collectors and scholars, and promote an understanding and appreciation of fine books.

Copyright © 2013 by Kathryn M. Doyle, California Genealogical Society and Library.