Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Walker, John G. (1835-1907) to Thomas Gibbons

High-resolution images are available to schools and libraries via subscription to American History, 1493-1943. Check to see if your school or library already has a subscription. Or click here for more information. You may also order a pdf of the image from us here.

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02763.01 Author/Creator: Walker, John G. (1835-1907) Place Written: Washington Type: Typed letter signed Date: 14 November 1902 Pagination: 3 p. : envelope ; 26.8 x 20.9 cm.

Summary of Content: Glad to receive a copy of the "Rainbow," a paper published aboard the U.S. Flagship Rainbow. Thanks him for box of cigars, though he says he does not smoke regularly, as well as for a photograph of himself and one of Gibbons taken in Hong Kong. Says, "Canal matters are waiting upon a treaty with Colombia for rights, privileges and concessions necessary before the Government can undertake the construction of a canal to connect the two oceans. How soon, if at all, a satisfactory treaty can be had no one can tell. If a suitable treaty is made and acted upon by the Senate, I have no doubt that the President will move promptly and that the preliminary work will begin almost immediately." Describes his family and where his children and grandchildren are staying. Comments, "I now have six grandchildren and begin to feel that I must be growing old." Mentions his wife's recovery from illness. Declares that he is out of touch with naval matters, since he has been consumed with canal matters. Mentions a Paymaster Whitehouse, who has been spending time in Europe with his family.

Background Information: John Grimes Walker (1835-1907) was a distinguished Union naval veteran of the Civil War. He was appointed President of the Isthmian Canal Commission in 1899. Prior research suggests that Gibbons served ...in the Department of State.See More

People: Walker, John Grimes, 1835-1907
Gibbons, Thomas, fl. 1902

Historical Era: Progressive Era to New Era, 1900-1929

Subjects: Progressive EraNavyTobacco and SmokingGiftJournalismPhotographyAsiaTreatyGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyLatin and South AmericaGovernment and CivicsPanama CanalCanalsInfrastructureCongressPresidentChildren and FamilyHealth and MedicalGlobal History and US Foreign Policy

Sub Era:

Order a Copy Citation Guidelines for Online Resources