Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Ada H. Spaulding to Walt Whitman, 26 December 1891

Date: December 26, 1891

Whitman Archive ID: loc.03952

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: Ethan Heusser, Cristin Noonan, Jason McCormick, Alex Ashland, and Stephanie Blalock

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Dear Walt Whitman:

Christmas Day was saddened by the news of your illness. On today we rejoice that you are better. There are many, now, who give thanks for your glorious work for life, for purity—for both in one; and the number will increase. You have helped make homes happy; you have taught lovers to love wisely; you have helped men to pray, who, but for you would have known only irreverence.

God bless you!

And if you can come back—tell us again—that all is good.

With tender gratitude,
A. H. Spaulding

Dec. 26

Ada H. Spaulding (b. 1841), née Pearsons, was a socialite and active member of various reform movements and women's clubs. She served as the President of the Home Club of East Boston and was a member of the Women's Educational and Industrial Union. She married Ebenezer Spaulding, an Assistant Surgeon during the Civil War, and, later, a homeopathic physician and surgeon who practiced in Boston. Ada Spaulding read and admired Whitman's poetry, visited the poet, and wrote a number of letters to him in his final years. For more on Spaulding, see Sherry Ceniza, "Women's Letters to Walt Whitman: Some Corrections," Walt Whitman Quarterly Review 9 (Winter 1992), 142–147.


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