Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Senator George F. Edmunds to Walt Whitman, 4 January 1867

Date: January 4, 1867

Whitman Archive ID: loc.01609

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.

Contributors to digital file: Alex Kinnaman, Elizabeth Lorang, Beverley Rilett, Ashley Lawson, Kevin McMullen, John Schwaninger, Caterina Bernardini, Amanda J. Axley, Cristin Noonan, Kassie Jo Baron, and Stephanie Blalock

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Senate [W?]
Jan 4 67

Dear Sir:

Mr Hyde1 of Burlington Vt, has sent by me a small package2 for you. It is at my room 419 N.Y. [av.?].3 Please call for it.

[Yours truly?]
Geo. F. Edmunds

Mr W Whitman
Atty Gener Office

George Franklin Edmunds (1828–1919) was a lawyer and, later, a Republican senator from Vermont, serving from 1866 to 1891. Edmunds was a participant in the 1868 attempt to impeach President Andrew Johnson. He co-sponsored the Edmunds-Tucker Act of 1887 that restricted practices of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, including polygamy. Edmunds also authored the Sherman Anti-Trust Act (1890), limiting monopolies.


1. Charles Louis Heyde (ca. 1820–1892), a French-born landscape painter, married Hannah Louisa Whitman (1823–1908), Walt Whitman's sister, and they lived in Burlington, Vermont. Charles Heyde was infamous among the Whitmans for his offensive letters and poor treatment of Hannah. For more information about Heyde, see Steven Schroeder, "Heyde, Charles Louis (1822–1892)," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998). [back]

2. Whitman mentions this package in his January 8, 1867, letter to his mother, Louisa Van Velsor Whitman. The package contained a stereoscope with images of Vermont. [back]

3. The Congressional Directory of 1867 lists George F. Edmunds' Washington residence as "419 N.Y. ave,. bet. Thirteenth and Fourteenth," what is today the 1400 block of New York Ave., NW. The 1867 edition of Boyd's Directory of Washington & Georgetown lists this same address as a part of Columbian College's National Medical College. [back]


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