Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Maurice Minton to Walt Whitman, 9 March 1890

Date: March 9, 1890

Whitman Archive ID: loc.02342

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: Kirby Little, Ian Faith, Blake Bronson-Bartlett, Alex Ashland, and Stephanie Blalock

page image
image 1
page image
image 2

[illegible]SE, ASTOR PLACE,
[illegible]NEW YORK, N. Y.
The Illustrated American.
New York,
March 9th 1890
Walt Whitman, Esq.
Camden, N. J.

Dear Sir,

One of our artists has just completed an excellent large portrait of yourself, which we hope to publish in an early issue. We should like a few lines to verse to go with it, and if you could supply us with this we should feel extremely obliged.1

Yours truly,
Maurice M. Minton

Maurice Meyer Minton (1859–1926) was a writer, politician, and editor, working as sports and drama editor of the New York Telegram and managing editor of the New York Herald. He founded The Illustrated American in 1890 and was editor and owner until 1894; Whitman appeared on the cover of the magazine in the April 19, 1890, issue. The publication was a weekly photographic news magazine, published at the Bible House, the headquarters of the American Bible Society, devoted to printing and distributing millions of bibles. The Bible House was located in a large and iconic cast iron building at Astor Place and East Ninth Street in New York City, which housed several publishing businesses and was a center of intellectual and literary activity.


1. Whitman sent Minton lines from section 16 of "Song of Myself": "One of the Nation of many nations, the smallest the same, and the largest the same: / A Southerner soon as a Northerner . . . Comrade of Californians: comrade of free North-Westerners: / Of every hue and caste am I—of every rank and religion." Whitman's portrait appears on the cover of the April 19, 1890, issue of The Illustrated American. The Sacramento Daily Union wrote that this image was "Probably the finest pen-and-ink drawing that has been published in this country," and attributed the illustration to Valerian Gribayédoff (vol. 39, no. 3, 1890). [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.