Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walter Whitman Reynolds to Walt Whitman, 1 June 1870

Date: June 1, 1870

Whitman Archive ID: loc.01861

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, Ashley Lawson, Nima Najafi Kianfar, John Schwaninger, Caterina Bernardini, Amanda J. Axley, Cristin Noonan, and Stephanie Blalock

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New York
June 1/70

Friend Walter

I now take my pen in hand to write to you I am in good health at Present & I hope you are same I wrote to you twice but received no answer what is the Reason you Dont write to me what are you angry about. in looking over your letters i find in your—letter of January 7/691—you say It is a very good thing to have a friend that will stick to you through life. It is a very good thing if you have such a friend I Dont think you are such a friend at least you Dont Prove it by your Actions—I think Actions goes further than words I am still at McKesson & Robbins2 I got over that little affair—without any help from any Body I think you acted very queer about that affair if you did not want to lend me the I asked for, why Did you not write and say so—not to make out you Did not get my letter for it would have been returned to McKesson & Robbins & I—would have received it if it had not been Delivered in ten Days. it is a month what about that suit of Clothes you said you would give me. you said when i was big Enough you would give me a good suit of Clothes but as you Did not think of it when you was I though I would put you in—mind of it if I would be man Enough to keep my word. I would not mind if you would give me my Clothes now as I need them very I cant go out any wear at present until i get some Clothes to wear. this is all at—Present from friend with love.

Walter W Reynolds

P.S.) if I Dont hear from you by Saturday I Shall know you have forgot me. if I dont Receive no answer, this is the last I Shall write yourself.

Walt Whitman Reynolds

Walter Whitman Reynolds (b. 1854), named after the poet, was the son of Henry Reynolds (b. 1827–before 1880), a car driver, and Eliza Reynolds (b. 1828?). Walter's mother Eliza Reynolds, wrote to Whitman on October 16, 1868, imploring Whitman to get to know his namesake. She described Walter as "a nice boy, between 13 and 14 years old" and told the poet: "i thought perhaps you might take an interest in him."


1. This letter has not been located. [back]

2. McKesson & Robbins (now the McKesson Corporation) was founded in 1833 by John McKesson and Charles Olcott as a wholesale pharmaceutical importer and distributer in New York. Daniel Robbins started working for the company as an apprentice and, later, became a partner. The company then became known as McKesson and Robbins. [back]


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