Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Unidentified Correspondent, 2 May 1887

Date: May 2, 1887

Whitman Archive ID: med.00799

Source: The current location of this manuscript is unknown. Miller derives his summary and transcription from the catalog of J.F. Drake (1931), a now-defunct antiquarian bookdealer. The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 4:89. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Contributors to digital file: Ryan Furlong, Stefan Schöberlein, Kevin McMullen, and Stephanie Blalock

May 2, 1887

[WW thanks his correspondent for the gift of "Every-Day Life of Abraham Lincoln."] I shall keep it by me for my own reading, & to refresh my memory of those turbulent days.

This correspondent may be Francis Fisher Browne (1843–1913), the author of The Every-Day Life of Abraham Lincoln (1886). Browne, editor of the literary monthly The Dial, was familiar with Whitman's work, having written a review of the 1881-82 edition of Leaves of Grass. In his biography of Lincoln, Browne reprinted Whitman's poem "O Captain ! My Captain!" under the title "Walt Whitman's Poem on President Lincoln's Death." It is possible that Browne sent Whitman a copy of the biography, to which Whitman is here responding.


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