George Dunton Widener, Jr. was the son of George Dunton Widener [1861-1912] and his wife Eleanore Elkins Widener [1861-1937]. The elder George was one of three sons of Pennsylvania businessman Peter Arrell Brown Widener [1834-1915] and his wife Hannah Josephine Dunton [c.1836-1896]. The son of a bricklayer, Peter went to public schools in Philadelphia, began his career as a butcher's assistant, and eventually rose to power and fortune in the trolley-car and financial industries. Of the three sons of Peter A.B. Widener, only Joseph Early Widener [1871/1872-1943] survived his father. The eldest son, Henry K. Widener, died of typhoid at age 15, and the elder George Dunton Widener died aboard the Titanic in 1912 along with his own son Harry Elkins Widener [b. 1885]. George, Jr., was married in 1917 to Jessie Sloan Dodge [d. 1968]. He carried on the family tradition of horse breeding and racing, a devotion of his uncle Joseph Early Widener and his cousin Peter Arrell Widener II [1895-1948]. He also continued the family tradition of art patronage, serving as chairman of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Lynnewood Hall, the family home built by Peter A.B. Widener in Elkins Park outside Philadelphia, housed an extensive collection of paintings, sculpture, decorative art and porcelains, which was ultimately donated to the National Gallery in 1942, through Joseph Widener.
Obituary, The New York Times, December 9, 1971, 50:1.
The New York Times. December 9, 1971:50 [obituary]