Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Louisa Van Velsor Whitman, 30 April 1867

Date: April 30, 1867

Source: The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 1:327. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Location: The Trent Collection of Whitmaniana, Duke University Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library

Whitman Archive ID: duk.00648

Contributors to digital file: Kenneth M. Price, Elizabeth Lorang, Zachary King, and Eric Conrad

Attorney General's Office,
April 30, 1867

Dearest mother,

I received your letter—also one from Jeffy. I wrote to Jeffy yesterday—I suppose it is for the best that he should go to St. Louis 1 —as it seems to be a great position—I was much pleased to hear that it was Mr. Kirkwood 2 who was the designing Engineer—& also that Davis 3 is to go to St. Louis on the works—

Well, mother, about domestic matters—I hardly know what to say at present—Jeff did not say in his letter what was proposed, or how he & Mat thought of doing—I can tell better after I hear—But, Mother, you must not worry about it—it will be arranged some way—

There is nothing new in my affairs—I have a little more work these days than usual, but get along first rate—am satisfied with the boarding-house as well as could be expected. Love to you & all, dear mother. I write this at my desk—spring is quite advanced here—it is a damp, misty, cloudy forenoon—but pleasant—I can send you whatever money you need, dear mother, any time—or can come on for a few days—try to take things coolly.



1. This offer was first described in Walt Whitman's April 23, 1867 letter to Louisa Van Velsor Whitman. [back]

2. James P. Kirkwood was a New York engineer; in his September 29, 1865 letter, Thomas Jefferson Whitman wrote to Walt Whitman that Kirkwood had gone to St. Louis to construct a water works. [back]

3. Joseph P. Davis, who accompanied Jeff to St. Louis after returning from Peru in 1865. [back]


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