Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to the Staffords, 15[–17] April [1881]

Date: April 15–17, 1881

Whitman Archive ID: med.00649

Source: Miller's transcription is derived from Alpress Broadsides, ed. Frank Ankenbrand, Jr. (1935). The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 3:220–221. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Contributors to digital file: Stefan Schoeberlein, Niima Najafi Kianfar, Eder Jaramillo, and Nicole Gray

Well here I am in a grand old hotel, the finest in town—the proprietor Mr Ferrin1 (a stranger too) sent and invited me to stop here as the guest of the house & no bill to pay—nice room large, fire in it, first rate grub (too good, I am tempted too much)—When I got up this morning, snow falling thick & every thing dark & cloudy & wintry—but looks a little brighter now—I am feeling pretty well—went out around yesterday & last night—great bright stirring city, this—great people, these Yankees—I like them—I am used tip top here—friends call all the time2—lecture comes off to-night.

Saturday Evening Lecture went off first rate last night—best I have had yet, better audience (better than New York or Philadelphia)—I am enjoying myself well—have been out riding today & shall go again to-morrow. I dont know that I can tell you anything particularly to interest you but I suppose you will like to have a word. I am to stop here till Tuesday or Wednesday next. Love to Harry & Ed—I send you a paper—

Walt Whitman

Boston Friday now April 15


1. Charles B. Ferrin, the proprietor of the Revere House. Whitman was in Boston from April 13 to 19. The proceeds from the lecture amounted to $135 (Whitman's Commonplace Book, Charles E. Feinberg Collection of the Papers of Walt Whitman, 1839–1919, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.). [back]

2. For the Boston visit, see The Critic of May 7, 1881; Specimen Days, ed. Floyd Stovall (New York: New York University Press, 1963), 264–269, 347–348; and Gay Wilson Allen, The Solitary Singer (New York: New York University Press, 1955), 491. An account of Whitman's lecture appeared in the Boston Herald on April 16. [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.