Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to an Unidentified Correspondent, 8 May 1891

Date: May 8, 1891

Whitman Archive ID: duk.00959

Source: Trent Collection of Whitmaniana, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University. The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 5:197–198. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Contributors to digital file: Andrew David King, Cristin Noonan, and Stephanie Blalock

Seems to me you had better take half a dozen (6) copies of the big book complete works1—See Circ: herewith. I w'd send you the six for $30 (by Ex:s)—

Walt Whitman

328 Mickle st: Camden N J
May 8 '91

no "previous letter" has come—

As yet we have no information about this correspondent.


1. Whitman often referred to Complete Poems & Prose (1888) as his "big book." The volume was published by the poet himself in an arrangement with publisher David McKay, who allowed Whitman to use the plates for both Leaves of Grass and Specimen Days—in December 1888. With the help of Horace Traubel, Whitman made the presswork and binding decisions, and Frederick Oldach bound the volume, which included a profile photo of the poet on the title page. For more information on the book, see Ed Folsom, Whitman Making Books/Books Making Whitman: A Catalog and Commentary (University of Iowa: Obermann Center for Advanced Studies, 2005). [back]


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