Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Thomas Donaldson, 16 September 1886

Date: September 16, 1886

Whitman Archive ID: loc.01478

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

Notes for this letter were derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller, 6 vols. (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), and supplemented, updated, or created by Whitman Archive staff as appropriate.

Contributors to digital file: Stefan Schöberlein and Kyle Barton

page image
image 1
page image
image 2

Camden New Jersey
Sept: 16 1886

As I sit here by the open window, this cloudy warm forenoon, I feel that I would just like to write a line (quite purposeless no doubt) sending my love & thanks to you & yours—Do you know this is the anniversary day of my receiving the present through you of the horse & wagon? And much, much good has it done me

—I remain in health much as usual, of late—Shall come over & spend a couple of hours with you soon. Shall send you a postal day before.

Walt Whitman

Shall get the tinotype of horse & wagon &c. for you, first opportunity—.1

Thomas Donaldson (1843–1898) was a lawyer from Philadelphia and a friend of Whitman. He introduced Whitman to Bram Stoker and later accompanied Stoker when he visited the poet; he also organized a fund-raising drive to buy Whitman a horse and carriage. He authored a biography of Whitman titled Walt Whitman, the Man (1896). For more information about Donaldson, see Steven Schroeder, "Donaldson, Thomas (1843–1898)," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998).


1. A picture of the horse and buggy was taken in October. [back]


Published Works | In Whitman's Hand | Life & Letters | Commentary | Resources | Pictures & Sound

Support the Archive | About the Archive

Distributed under a Creative Commons License. Matt Cohen, Ed Folsom, & Kenneth M. Price, editors.