Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Charles W. Eldridge, 13 October [1873]

Date: October 13, 1873

Whitman Archive ID: nyp.00322

Source: The Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature, New York Public Library. The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 2:250–251. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Contributors to digital file: Kenneth M. Price, Elizabeth Lorang, Kathryn Kruger, Zachary King, and Eric Conrad

Oct. 13
½ past 1, p.m.

My dear friend1

I am having quite a good spell to-day, (if it only lasts)—I wish you, in conjunction with Peter Doyle, would go over to my room at Dr. White's, & unlock the big trunk, (the one that is strapped) and take out

My gray suit, coat, vest, & I think there are two pairs of pants, both alike.

My black overcoat, quite heavy—it is the one in the trunk—

Black felt hat, (there are two black hats, this is the lightest, most flexible one—not the big fellow.)

The pair of old buckskin gloves, with sheepskin cuffs and do them up in a bundle—I think you can get three or four large sheets of very strong brown paper for wrapper, tied securely with very strong cord—direct plainly to me, 431 Stevens st. cor. West, here—put duplicate directions on—& send by Adams express—I write to-day to Peter Doyle, same request as this, and asking him to meet you at Milburn's2 bet 3½ and 4, this afternoon—if not to-day, to-morrow, (or next day, or next still) will do just as well, as I am in no particular hurry. Pete put the things in the trunk for me, & will know about them. Then lock & strap the trunk again, & return key to me. There are two locks, both of which this key unlocks.

I rec'd your good letter yesterday. I will write promptly if there is any marked change in my condition. I rec'd a letter from Walter Godey, Saturday, & wrote to him yesterday.

Walt Whitman

After the bundle is dispatched to express office, write me a line—(As I have said, I am in no particular hurry—use your convenience)—


1. This letter and his October 13, 1873 letter to Peter Doyle indicate that Whitman had abandoned his plans to return to Washington in the near future. [back]

2. Whitman refers here to a drug store run by his friends. [back]


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