Collection F01476 - Walter Hawkins collection

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Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Walter Hawkins collection

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Collection

Reference code

CA ON00239 F01476

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Dates of creation area

Date(s)

  • [ca. 1830]-1840 (Creation)
    Creator
    Hawkins, Walter

Physical description area

Physical description

2 v. ; 3 indexes

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Archival description area

Name of creator

([1787-1862])

Biographical history

Walter Hawkins was born in London, England in 1787, where he worked as an insurance and shipping broker and importer. An avid numismatist and amateur antiquarian, he amassed a collection of thousands of coins and medals, as well as a broad assortment of botanical, zoological, and historical oddities and artifacts, over his lifetime. He was a Fellow of the Antiquarian Society in London [1843] as well as an original member of the Numismatic Society, and presented on a variety of topics from archaeology to medals to various organizations around London. He died on January 27 1862.Never married, he died after a brief illness om January 27, 1862 at the age of 75.

Custodial history

"The Casket", created by Walter Hawkins, was donated to Douglas Library from the estate of Mrs. R.F Segsworth via the Queen's Art Foundation in April 1944. It was officially presented to the University during Spring Convocation May 20 1944.

Scope and content

The Walter Hawkins collection consists of a scrapbook in two volumes entitled The Casket, along with 3 index volumes. The scrapbooks are bound in leather, by Clarke & Bedford, London. Many of the title pages within the volumes are elaborately decorated in the manner of illuminated manuscripts. Included are original works of art as well as copies of paintings and engravings, and hundreds of drawings of coins, some from Hawkins’ collection, and some accompanied by lengthy explanations of their origins. Also included are works of poetry and texts in foreign and ancient languages. Of the zoological, botanical, and historical artifacts depicted, some were described and drawn for Hawkins’ interest and/or inclusion in the scrapbook by traveling acquaintances.
A significant portion of The Casket is occupied by Hawkins’ collection of “autographs of eminent persons.” They appear in various formats: on pages printed for the purpose, on tickets to lectures of the Royal Society tipped into the book, and on elaborately decorated pages displaying the autographs of members of individual institutions. Hawkins requested of some contributors that they provide a brief theme in an area of their interests or expertise, and several take the form of personal tribute to Hawkins. One section is dedicated to autographs of his fellow numismatists. Many of the autographs are dated within the period from 1843-1845, suggesting that the bulk of the collection was the result of an intensive project, rather than a life-long hobby. Some notable items are pencil tracings of two William Blake sketches, a watercolour done by John Hoppner, autographs of royal personages from Henry VIII to Queen Victoria, and the autograph of Peter Jones (Kahkewaquonaby). Some of the drawings are thought to be done by Walter Hawkins himself, especially the coins and medals as these were of particular interest to him. But many of the drawings were done by other people. Each item in The Casket has a number assigned to it. This number directly corresponds to one of the indexes which identifies the creator or provenance of most items.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Donated to Douglas Library by Queen's Art Foundation, April 1944. Donated by Special Collections Unit, Douglas Library, Queen's University.

Arrangement

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Location of originals

3248

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Open

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Copyright restrictions may apply.

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Location

  • Shelf: 3248