Life & Letters

Correspondence

About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Peter Doyle, 5 April [1872]

Date: April 5, 1872

Editorial notes: The annotations, "1870," and "1872," are in an unknown hand.

Source: Transcribed from digital images or a microfilm reproduction of the original item. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Location: The Charles E. Feinberg Collection of the Papers of Walt Whitman, 1839–1919, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Whitman Archive ID: loc.01734

Contributors to digital file: Alex Kinnaman, Elizabeth Lorang, Kathryn Kruger, Zachary King, Eric Conrad, and Nicole Gray



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Brooklyn,
Friday forenoon,
April 5.

Dear son,

I expect to be back in Washington next week—somewhere in the middle of the week.—I am well—Mother is pretty well—I rec'd your letter three days since—Pete, things must be going on about the same as ever—

̬As I write, it is pleasant weather, & I am going out to get the good of it—Pete take care of yourself till I see you dear boy.


Walt


Correspondent:
Peter Doyle (1843–1907) was one of Walt Whitman's closest comrades and lovers, and their friendship spanned nearly thirty years. The two met in 1865 when the twenty-one-year-old Doyle drove the forty-five-year-old Whitman by horsecar. Despite his status as a veteran of the Confederate Army, Doyle's uneducated, youthful nature appealed to Whitman. Although Whitman's stroke in 1873 and subsequent move from Washington to Camden limited the time the two could spend together, their relationship rekindled in the mid-1880s after Doyle moved to Philadelphia and visited nearby Camden frequently. After Whitman's death, Doyle permitted Richard Maurice Bucke to publish the letters Whitman had sent him. For more on Doyle and his relationship with Whitman, see Martin G. Murray, "Doyle, Peter."


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