Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to William D. O'Connor, 21 July [1882]

Date: July 21, 1882

Whitman Archive ID: nyp.00462

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), 3:298. 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, Nima Najafi Kianfar, Eder Jaramillo, and Nicole Gray

July 21—Evn'g1

Yours of 20th rec'd2—Nothing very new—the 2d & larger Phila. ed'n L of G. will be ready ab't 26th or 7th3—(I like it best of all my ed'ns)—I will send you one soon as I can get it—also Florio's Montaigne if it can be had4



1. This letter is endorsed: "Answ'd July 24/82." It is addressed: Wm D O'Connor | Life Saving Service Bureau | Washington D C. It is postmarked: Philadelphia | Pa. | Jul 21 82 | 11 PM; Washington, D.C. | Jul | 22 | 7 AM | 1882 | Recd. [back]

2. In 1888, speaking to Horace Traubel, Whitman observed that he had read O'Connor's letter of July 20 "a dozen times" (Horace Traubel, With Walt Whitman in Camden [New York: Mitchell Kennerley, 1915], 2:60). O'Connor was so vituperative in dealing with Comstock that Traubel omitted the following passage: "It a disgrace to the Government that they should employ this vile maggot bred from carrion—the rat of the cloaca—this lump of devil's-dung." [back]

3. This edition appeared on August 4 (see the letter from Whitman to O'Connor of August 6, 1882). [back]

4. On July 7, O'Connor asked Whitman to see whether Rees Welsh & Co. had a copy of the first edition of Florio's Montaigne (Charles E. Feinberg Collection, Library of Congress, Washington D.C.). See also Traubel, With Walt Whitman in Camden, Wednesday, October 17, 1888, 496. [back]


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