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Letter signed by Walter Chrysler (1924)

Letter signed by Walter Chrysler (1924)

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About to found the famous car brand, Walter Chrysler encourages his son to study and practice sports.

Typewritten letter from Walter Chrysler to his son, Walter Percy Junior, 15 at the time, a student at the elite Hotchkiss school. Hand signed "Dad". One page, with official Walter Chrysler letterhead, and original envelope. In English. 20.2 cm x 25.4 cm. New-York, October 6, 1924. Excellent condition. Single piece.


I got back from Detroit on Saturday morning … I know you're working hard and that you'll do one hundred percent at Hotchkiss. Work hard and have fun whenever you get the chance. Reid will pick up your golf clubs today and probably ship them tomorrow. I hope you get everything we send you. If you want, play tennis, golf, etc; get plenty of exercise.

Walter Chrysler (1875 - 1940), of German descent, after working and being recognized as an excellent mechanic in companies in the railway sector, was invited to head production at Buick, at the time the largest company in the field in the United States. He made a brilliant career at the company, innovating in a spectacular way, until he became a shareholder and president, thus building his fortune. His enrichment made it possible to have enough capital to found Chrysler and become one of Detroit's "three". Currently, Chrysler belongs to the Fiat group, like Ferrari, controlling several other brands, such as Dodge, Ram trucks or Jeep.

His son Walter Jr, the recipient of this letter, then aged 14, became interested in his father's art collection very early on. The Chrysler Museum Of Art website recounts a unique event, one year after this letter:

Walter Chrysler Jr., while a 14-year-old boarding school student, bought his first painting, a small watercolor of a nude. A dorm master, believing no proper young man should have a nude in his room, confiscated and destroyed the painting. The kicker? The destroyed painting was a Renoir!

Later, when formed, Walter Jr. left for Europe, where he met Picasso, Braque, Gris, Matisse, Léger and other avant-garde artists in Paris. He acquired several works from each of them, preparing - with his father - the largest private collection of painting and sculpture in the United States.

This letter draws attention to Walter Chrysler's concern for his son's education and well-being, asking him to work hard, but also practice sports (his father's passion). Walter Chrysler also shows affection for his other children and especially for his wife, whose loss in 1938 caused his premature death. In addition, this letter is historically important as it was written in 1924, the year in which Walter Chrysler created the brand's first car, also the first car with an affordable price, the Chrysler Six, a year before officially creating Chrysler.

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