John Brooks Walton, renowned Tulsa architect, historian, author, public
speaker, artist, collector and so much more peacefully passed on October
22, 2016. He was 87 years old.
John Brooks Walton was born in Kaw City, Oklahoma, on April 28, 1929, to
Ray Earl Walton and Mattie Brooks Walton. Raised in Ponca City, Walton
graduated with a degree in Architecture from Oklahoma A&M (O.S.U.)
in 1953. He and his wife, Margaret Stanley Walton, were married that same
year and relocated to Tulsa in 1954, where John started his apprenticeship
and 60-year private practice as an architect.
In 1970, Walton began purchasing and restoring homes primarily in the historic
Maple Ridge District in Tulsa. Included were the James Gillette and the
W. G. Skelly mansions which he had listed on the National Register of
Historic Places. The Walton family would live in the Skelly mansion for
seventeen years. In 1990, Walton was listed in SOUTHERN LIVING MAGAZINE
as one of twenty-five southern architects recognized for their work in
In 1995, he and Margaret relocated to Swan Lake and would present the Lake
with a bronze statue called ENCHANTMENT. Located at the east end of Swan
Lake, it was originally one of several bronzes that encircled a fountain
at the 1934 Chicago World's Fair.
Following his retirement as an active architect, Walton began to write
and eventually wrote and published fourteen books on historic homes and
architects. In 2006, he was given a grant by the Oklahoma Centennial Commission
to write a book for the 2007 State Centennial on the artwork of Tulsa.
In the 2003, a long-time Tulsa friend and artist, Ruthie Armstrong, encouraged
Walton to expand his artistic talents from his short time in ceramics
to acrylic paints. His many compositions, developed from his own personal
style, have been popular with local and national experts.
Walton was a member of Trinity Episcopal Church, Wauhillau Outing Club,
American Institute of Architects, Sons of the American Revolution, Pi
Kappa Alpha Fraternity and many other fondly held organizations.
John Brooks Walton was not only known for his architecture and many artistic
talents. He will be missed most for his enormous generosity, hearty sense
of dry humor and lifelong dedication to his family, friends and the city of Tulsa.
John Brooks Walton is preceded in death by one son, Brooks Walton and two
sisters. He is survived by his wife, Margaret, their 5 children, Ann,
Stan, Jane, Sue, Jean, seven grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
A funeral service and celebration for Walton's time on earth will be
held at 1:00 pm, Saturday, October 29 at Trinity Episcopal Church, 501
S Cincinnati. In lieu of flowers, donations are requested to Tulsa Iron
Gate, 501 S Cincinnati.