Title: Redelia Bates to Walt Whitman, 8 April 1872
Date: April 8, 1872
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.05427
Contributors to digital file: Alex Kinnaman, Stefan Schöberlein, Nicole Gray, and Kenneth M. Price
470 State Street
Mr Walt Whitman
I regret exceedingly the awkwardness which seemed to impress you this morning as a disposition to pry impudently into your business for the purpose of making you a subject of public gossip. Permit me to assure that such a motive was foreign to my mind. My object in calling upon you was simply that of friendly interest which I had been encouraged to think was reciprocal during our brief acquaintance in Washington. If my presence was an intrusion pray pardon it: but do not I beseech you attribute to presumption or idle curiosity that which sprang only from the most disinterested feelings of friendship.
Trusting that this explanation will exonerate me from all undeserved suspicion, I have the honor to remain
Redelia Bates (1842–1943) was a female suffrage lecturer from St. Louis, who married American socialist Albert Brisbane. After his death she edited and published his autobiography.