Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Harry Stafford, 1 December [1880]

Date: December 1, 1880

Whitman Archive ID: loc.04010

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

Editorial note: The annotation, "1880," is in the hand of Richard Maurice Bucke.

Contributors to digital file: Eder Jaramillo, Alicia Bones, Grace Thomas, Kevin McMullen, and Nicole Gray

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Wednesday Evn'g Dec: 1—

Dear Hank

Nothing very new with me the last two weeks—how has it been with you?—Are you on the C & A1 again—& how about that Medford Station?—Write soon—(it will do you good to write & fully & carefully—I wish you would oftener)—

I have had something of a set-back—A rascally publisher in New York named Worthington has been printing and selling a cheaper edition of my book for his own profit, no benefit to me at all—& it has been going on privately for a year—I only found it out for certain about ten days ago—of course it is quite a hurt to me—will lead to a law suit, as I shall have to sue him, & I hate getting into law—it is almost as bad to me to sue, as to be sued—then it cost money—

—I am jogging along here about the same—keep pretty well, & eat my allowance every time—went over to 41st st: Phila: to eat my Thanksgiving dinner, with an old friend of mine, (his wife & two young ones)—had a good time—Came back home in a rousing snow storm, but got along all right—Sunday morning went to breakfast at Mr and Mrs Scovel's2

—I am sitting up here 3d story—warm & nice, every thing as still as can be—it has struck 8, and the wind outside moans & whistles by starts—have been reading the evening paper, & to-day's N Y Tribune—& I thought I would write to you, but I am afraid I havn't made out a very interesting letter—It was well I was down there the good weather middle of November—it has been bad enough since, some bitter cold—I have got my new overcoat, it is thick & warm & I like it—have you got the new cider?—Love to your father & mother, not forgetting your share dear son—



1. Camden & Atlantic Railroad. [back]

2. According to entries in Whitman's Commonplace Book, Whitman often had Sunday breakfast with the Scovels. Though there is no entry in the notebook for November 28, he was at the Scovels's on December 5. The poet spent Thanksgiving with the Kilgores (Whitman's Commonplace Book, Charles E. Feinberg Collection of the Papers of Walt Whitman, 1839–1919, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.). [back]


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