How the Waltons — America's wealthiest family and heirs to the Walmart empire — live their lives

AP/April L. BrownSam Walton — who created Walmart and Sam’s Club — wasn’t a man of flashy luxury. But his children live a slightly more lavish life now.

The combined wealth of the Walmart heirs – which includes Rob, Jim, and Alice, as well as John’s wife, Christy, and their son Lukas – is more than $US175 billion, according to The Financial Post.

While some work in the family business – whether that’s serving on the company board or working to manage the family’s wealth – others chose to pursue areas of personal passion.

Sam Walton, the original man behind the company that now encompasses both Walmart and Sam’s Club, set his family up for financial success when he divided the ownership before he died.

He wasn’t a man of flashy luxury, but you can see how his children are living a slightly more lavish life now.

Sam Walton opened the first Walmart store in Arkansas in 1962.

Associated PressSam Walton wearing an original Wal-Mart name tag.

He married Helen Robson on Valentine’s Day in 1942, and together they had four children: Rob, John, Jim, and Alice.

April L. Brown/Associated PressThe couple had a romantic Valentine’s Day wedding.

By the time Sam died in 1992, he had set up the company ownership in a way that minimized the estate taxes anyone on the receiving end of his will had to pay.

Rick Wilking/ReutersSam was very organised with his finances.

Source: Fortune

He set up his ownership of Walmart’s stock in a family partnership — each of his children held 20% of Walton Enterprises, while he and Helen each held 10%. Helen inherited Sam’s 10% tax-free when he died.

Courtesy of WalmartThe stocks were carefully divided between the family.

Source: Fortune

Samuel Robson “Rob” Walton is the oldest Walton child.

ReutersRob served as chairman of Walmart for many years.

He served as chairman of Walmart until 2015.

Rick T. Wilking / Stringer / Getty ImagesHe retired five years ago.

Rob has a house in Paradise Valley, Arizona, near the base of Camelback Mountain.

Tim Roberts Photography/ShutterstockThe beautiful Paradise Valley, Arizona.

In the past, protesters have rallied outside of his Arizona home to advocate for better wages and benefits for Walmart workers.

J Pat Carter/Associated PressProtesters at a Walmart in Boynton Beach, Florida.

Rob also has a large collection of vintage cars.

Ben Pruchnie/Getty ImagesWalton’s personal collection not pictured.

In 2013, he ran his Daytona Coupe, which was worth $US15 million at the time, off the tracks and wrecked it. The car was one of only five ever made.

AP Photo/Tom MihalekThe car was totalled in the crash.

John was the second-oldest child. He died in a plane crash in 2005.

April L. Brown/Associated PressJohn (right) with his mother (centre) and brother, Rob (left).

He was married to Christy Walton and had one son, Lukas.

Walton Family Foundation/YouTubeLukas is now 34-years-old.

John left about 17% of his wealth to his wife, and he gave the rest to charity and to his son.

APJohn was very charitable.

Source: Business Insider

John served in Vietnam as a Green Beret. When he returned from the war he held a series of jobs — like the Walmart company pilot, a crop duster, and the owner a few yachting companies — before becoming a Walmart board member.

AP Photo/Spencer TireyJohn (second from left) pictured with members of his family.

Source: Fortune

In 2013, Christy decided to sell their Jackson Hole mansion. She also listed the family’s ranch, which includes its own elk herd, for $US68.7 million — it’s now listed for $US39 million.

Jackson Hole Real EstateThe family’s Jackson Hole mansion.

Source: Curbed and Ranch Marketing Associates

The 8,606-square-foot home was put on the market for $US12.5 million.

Google MapsAn aerial view of the mansion.

Source: Curbed

James “Jim” Walton is the youngest son.

WalmartJim Walton is now 71-years-old.

He is chairman of the board of the family’s Arvest Bank, which has assets that total more than $US18 billion and is estimated to be worth $US45.3 billion.

Google MapsOne of many Arvest Bank locations in Bentonville, Arkansas.

Source: Bloomberg

He also served on the Walmart board before being replaced by his son Steuart in 2016.

Rick T. Wilking /Stringer/GettyJim served on the board for more than a decade.

Now, he presides over Walton Enterprises — the private company that deals with the investments and finances of the Walton family only — from modest offices in Bentonville, Arkansas.

Google MapsJim now manages the family’s finances.

Source: Fortune

The youngest sibling, Alice Walton, is worth $US44.4 billion. She has been divorced twice and has no children.

AP/April L. BrownAlice is passionate about collecting art.

Alice has never taken an active role in running the family business.

REUTERS/Rick WilkingAlice Walton (Jim out of focus).

Instead, she became a patron of the arts, which she fell in love with at a young age.

D Dipasupil/Getty ImagesAlice followed her passion and devoted her life to collecting art.

When she was 10, she bought her first work of art: a reproduction of Picasso’s “Blue Nude” for about $US2, she told The New Yorker.

Evan Vucci/Associated PressPicasso’s ‘The Blue Room.’

Source: The New Yorker

She has an immense private art collection, with original works from Andy Warhol and Georgia O’Keeffe.

AP Images/Kirsty WigglesworthAlice has built a massive collection.

Alice opened a museum called Crystal Bridges in 2011 to house her $US500 million private art collection.

Danny Johnston/Associated PressThe museum displays both paintings and sculptures, like this one by Alexander Calder (centre).

The collection includes a Georgia O’Keeffe painting she spent $US44.4 million on in 2014 — the biggest sale for a woman’s piece of art in history.

Courtesy of Sotheby’sGeorgia O’Keeffe, ‘Jimson Weed/White Flower No. 1’ (1932), Sotheby’s.

Source: The Observer

When it opened, it had four times the endowment of the famous Whitney Museum in New York.

Eduardo Munoz/ReutersA view of the Whitney Museum from the High Line.

The museum’s grounds are filled with flora …

Danny Johnston/Associated PressThe lucious gardens outside the museum.

… and surrounded by streams that make it look like the buildings float on water.

Jacob Slaton/ReutersThe serene setting of the museum.

It’s so beautiful that people use it as a wedding and special events venue.

Weddings at Crystal Bridges/YouTubeThey can host both indoor and outdoor ceremonies.

Source: Crystal Bridges

Alice is also a breeder of horses.

Associated PressBesides art, she loves spending time with horses.

Her Millsap, Texas, property, Rocking W Ranch, sold to the Three Amigos Investment Group of Kermit in September 2017 for an undisclosed amount.

Courtesy of WilliamsTrewHer property was elegantly decorated.

Source: Star-Telegram

It had an initial asking price of $US19.75 million, but was most recently listed for $US16.5 million. The working ranch has over 250 acres of pasture and outbuildings for cattle and horses.

Courtesy of WilliamsTrewIt was also next to a large lake.

Source: WilliamsTrew

Her other 4,416-acre Texas ranch was previously listed at a reduced price of $US22 million.

Courtesy of WilliamsTrewA huge firepit was built in the backyard.

Source: Fortune

The modest, three-bedroom, two-bathroom home overlooks the Brazos River.

Dave Mosher/Business InsiderA sunset near Brazos River.

Alice also owns a two-floor condo on New York’s Park Ave., which she bought for $US25 million in 2014.

Getty Images/Arata PhotographyPark Avenue pictured above at night.

Source: Business Insider

It has more than 52 large windows overlooking Central Park plus a media room, a winding staircase, and more than 6,000 total square feet of space.

evenfh/ShutterstockView of Central Park from the southeast.

Source: Business Insider

In January 2016, Alice donated 3.7 million of her Walmart shares — worth about $US225 million at the time — to the family’s nonprofit, the Walton Family Foundation.

Facebook/Walton Family FoundationThe Walton Family Foundation website.

Sam and Helen started the foundation as a way to teach their children how to give back and how to work together.

Walton Family Foundation/YouTubeThe children learned from an early age to be generous with their money.

The charity awarded $US535.5 million in grants, each helping a cause that aligns with their values.

The foundation has three main areas of focus:

Walton Family Foundation/YouTubeA project put on by the Walton Family Foundation.

The foundation’s focus on education was led by John. His brother, Jim, said John was really interested in being able to give parents choices when it came to their child’s schooling.

Walton Family Foundation/YouTubeThe foundation was dedicated to supporting children’s education.

Source: Walton Family Foundation

Rob spearheaded the foundation’s venture into environmental outreach. One of the first grants they gave was one that helped develop a sustainable fisheries label.

Walton Family Foundation/YouTubeRob launched the environmental and sustainability branch of the foundation.

Source: Walton Family Foundation

A commitment to the family’s home in Arkansas is another large part of the foundation. Whether it’s creating a system of mountain-bike trails through the Ozarks or developing the grounds around Crystal Bridges, the Waltons are celebrating the community that helped their family get to where they are.

Walton Family Foundation/YouTubeThe Bentonville town square.

Source: Walton Family Foundation

Walmart Inc., which owns Walmart and Sam’s Club, is the largest retailer in the US in terms of revenue, with sales of $US500.34 billion per year.

Business Insider/Jessica TylerThe storefront of a Walmart.

Source: Fortune

When Walmart has a good quarter, the Waltons make hundreds of millions of dollars in dividends.

AP/April L. BrownThe siblings all together.

Source: Forbes and The Guardian

The company reported in February 2019 that same-store sales in the US up 3.6% for fiscal 2019.

AP/Gunnar RathbunShoppers leaving Walmart with lots of gifts.

Source: Walmart

Even though the Walton family is raking in billions as a result of the company’s success, they remain relatively under-the-radar in terms of flashing their wealth — much like their patriarch, Sam, did in the early years.

JULIO CESAR AGUILAR/AFP via Getty ImagesThe infamous Walmart store.

Source: Fortune

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