When J. Carter Walker returned to Woodberry Forest in 1897 to assist his father, Robert Stringfellow Walker, and to become Woodberry’s first headmaster, father and son quickly began planning for a new school building.
After Mr. Walker mortgaged the Woodberry property to secure $30,000 and called upon friends, neighbors, and relatives for loans, work on what was then called the Main Building began in 1898. The foundation was made from bricks fired where the third green of Woodberry’s golf course now sits. Trees from Woodberry and surrounding farms were logged for timber to frame out the rooms.
When the building opened in February 1899, it was cutting edge, and the finest prep school building in the South. Additions over the following decades, as well as updates to the original space, made it the place where Woodberry boys lived, ate, and studied.
As the building nears its 120th birthday, Woodberry is completely updating and revitalizing the Walker Building, ensuring that it is once again a cutting edge space devoted to educating boys.